Budget 2021-22 briefs

New project to fill vacant shops – $180,000

Council will help boost energy and activity in the city centre with a new project to fill vacant shops with creative enterprises.

This new approach will assist property owners to activate and market vacant shops within the city. Creative enterprises selected to be part of the program will be carefully curated to complement, not compete, with existing traders.

This project follows on from Council’s significant investment in projects in the city centre, including the recently completed Esplanade Dining Precinct.

Climate Change Strategy – $95,000

The Cairns region is particularly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, but is also well placed to be a leader in the smart green economy and provide opportunities for sustainable growth and build resilience for the region.

The Cairns Climate Change Strategy will set out the next decade of climate action, including pathways to zero emissions.

Council has committed $95,000 to progressing this strategy, which builds on previous climate action and coastal hazard planning, investment into renewable energy, and emission reductions.

Cairns 2050 Growth Strategy (Stage 1) – $130,000

Council will develop a strategy that identifies targets and approaches to ensure the growth of the region to 2050 and beyond is being proactively and sustainably managed.

The growth strategy will encourage investment in the region, recognising that population is expected to reach 300,000 in the medium to long-term.

The 2050 Growth Strategy will look to support a wider range of businesses, industries and services and also form a foundation for Council’s contemporary land use planning that supports growth, liveability and sustainability.

Animal Management – $500,000

Council will invest $500,000 into improving its capacity to proactively respond to animal complaints and behaviour issues.

The funding comes following a general increase in dog related complaints over the past 12 months and is addition to $6.3 million in capital works for a new animal management facility in Woree.

Bus stop improvements – $760,000

Council has allocated $760,000 for the upgrade of bus sites across the city, including the installation of bus shelters at 16 sites and making 15 sites Disability Discrimination Act compliant. The DDA program upgrades bus stops to assist those visually impaired, and those in wheelchairs, to use the public transport system.

CCTV network – $500,000

Council has allocated $500,000 to the renewal, upgrade and expansion of its CCTV network, which currently has more than 400 cameras across the city, about 185 of which are in the CBD.

Palm Cove Streetscape and Landscape Master Plan – $150,000

The master plan will create a high-level, strategic vision for Palm Cove, with a focus on delivering an improved streetscape for Williams Esplanade, and develop a landscaping and materials palette.

The master plan will address a range of issues including pedestrian connectivity, parking and traffic flow, use of public spaces and outdoor dining.

The development process will include opportunities for key stakeholders, Palm Cove businesses and members of the community to have their say and help shape the master plan.

Cairns City Centre Master Plan – $250,000

A lot has changed since Council endorsed the 2019 Cairns City Centre MasterPlan.

Many of the identified projects have been started or completed as they were fast tracked to provide economic stimulus as a local response to COVID-19, including the Esplanade Dining Precinct.

To ensure planning for the City Centre responds to current needs and emerging trends, Council will revisit the master plan.

The master plan will also be a tool to bring together all the work that is being undertaken in the city centre to ensure planning and development is undertaken in a coordinated, integrated and sustainable manner.

FUNDING NOTE: The Queensland and Australian Governments have provided some level of funding for some items listed within the Cairns Regional Council budget.

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