Council flags renaming a road to honour Edmonton pioneer

Council today announced its intention to recognise the extensive contribution of Lou Piccone to the Cairns community, particularly the Edmonton area, by renaming a road in his honour.

Council is proposing to name an unnamed service road, known as the “old Bruce Highway”, which services the strip from the Petersen Road/Bruce Highway intersection to the Mill Road intersection, to Lou Piccone Road.

Mr Piccone, the name behind the well-known Piccone’s IGA supermarket, has a lifelong connection to the area through support for community, sporting and charity groups.

“Lou Piccone is the heart and soul of Edmonton, an icon of our City of Cairns, respected and loved,” Division 1 Councillor Brett Moller said.

“His contribution to our community through sponsorships, philanthropic and community initiatives, advocacy, and in a caring way, is appreciated and valued.”

The road is currently a State asset, with Council intending to formally apply to rename it to Lou Piccone Road.

Council will also consult with local businesses and residents before proceeding.

As well as servicing a day care centre, accommodation, police station and commercial shops, the road also takes in the former butcher shop and general store run by Mr Piccone’s father.

This site was later developed by Mr Piccone (junior) into the Piccone IGA and the Edmonton Shopping Village, a shopping centre now operated by his sons Peter and John.

The family also owns the Historic Hambledon Hotel on this road.

Mr Piccone was born in Cairns on 28 February, 1934, the son of Italian immigrants, Luigi and Anna, who arrived in Australian in the 1920s.

While the couple settled briefly in Ingham and then Babinda, the search for a town with less rain brought them to Edmonton.

“As new residents of Australia, Lou’s parents were hard working members of the Edmonton community,” Mayor Bob Manning said.

“It was them who introduced a young Lou to the world of small business, unknowingly setting their son on a path not only to business success but toward a lifelong connection with Edmonton and its people.

“Lou Piccone Is one of those who have made a real and lasting difference to our community and our city.”

Mr Piccone was named Cairns Citizen of the Year in 2000.

Lou Piccone attended St Theresa’s School at Edmonton and boarded the St Augustine’s College for his high school years.

“We all know Lou has provided significant support to sporting clubs in this city, perhaps not such a surprise when you consider he was quite an accomplished sportsman himself,” Cr Manning said.

An indication of his sporting prowess can be seen from the St Augustine’s College Speech Night Programme Prize List of 1951:

  • Rugby League: Captained side for T.Smythe Shield; captained the Cairns U/17 Rep team in the NQ Register Cup (Cairns v Ayr playing front row).
  • Cricket: Cairns District Cricket competition B-Grade Premiers. St Augustine’s College, best batsman and best bowler honours.
  • Athletics: Received Mines trophy for most points.
  • Hockey: St Augustine’s College B-Grade Premiers 1951; received Best Player award.
  • Tennis: A. DeJarlais prize for senior champion.
  • Boxing: Senior champion.

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