Cowell shore works on track

Foreshore works in Cowell are on track, with the marina expected to be finished by July or August this year.

Franklin Harbour chief executive officer Shane Gill said everything had gone fairly smoothly.

"We're only really working on the marina at this point and that's progressing really well now, and we're probably on track to have an operating marina by July/August," he said.

"And then the next stage is of course the whole beautification, water park, of the whole foreshore, that will start pretty much as the marina finishes.

"The coronavirus may slow it down a bit, but not much I don't think - the government are going to want to be stimulating the economy so they will be wanting us to push on no doubt."

Mr Gill said they had encountered an issue with the northern breakwater because it was leaking water during excavation and the pumps were not keeping up with the inflow.

"It was a risk that was identified before the job ever started that when you're digging or excavating like we are there, it's much easier and more cost effective to dig if you can get it dry and keep it dry," he said.

"But because that northern breakwater was built a long time ago we had no idea really what was under there and whether it would hold the water back - and it didn't.

"The contractors had to go along and sort of dig one side out of it and do what they call clay keying, which is water tight, and it's worked."

Mr Gill said one of the first projects to begin after the marina is completed will be the water park, which landscape architects are now working on the final design for.

He said it was one of the "big ticket items" and would personally like to see it completed by Christmas.

"I'd like to see it functioning by Christmas but given what's now going on in the world that's probably a pipe dream but it's not out of the question," he said.

Mr Gill said the foreshore redevelopment, which began in October 2019 should be complete by Christmas 2021.

The council is still in the process of purchasing a section of the land for the foreshore development but hope to have it finalised this month.

The foreshore and marina development is expected to cost about $8 million, after the scope of infrastructure on the foreshore was reduced, and is a combination of government, council, and grant funding.