The biggest infrastructure development to happen in Midge Point (Whitsundays mainland, on pristine Repulse Bay) since the opening of The Point Tavern in 2004 was the official opening of the Carlisle Waters Estate over the weekend (Saturday 25 October).
At 10.00am last Saturday local developer John Lyons saw his Carlisle Waters Estate officially opened with dignitaries Hon. Jason Costigan State MP, and Councillor Alison Jones Mackay Regional Council doing the honours, cutting the ribbon.
Joining them were many prominent business associates, friends of the project and local Midge Point town folks, with one thing in common, celebrating this momentous occasion.
Officials thanked the traditional owners, explained there were three stages to the estate and Councillor Alison Jones said that 10 properties had already been sold which pleased the Shire no end and amazed all present looking toward a bright future. What was more it was a beautiful October spring day with that remarkable sea breeze, not surprising as the estate is one block from the ocean.
The estate's 103 house blocks feature the architect designed Carlisle Coast collection (Russell Winnett of Yeppoon Architect Firm Studio R) where purchasers have numbers of options to suit both their wallet and dreams. This is one development where first home owners are welcome.
Guests experienced the Carlisle Waters Estate's project home and such was the community fair that the regional Bloomsbury School P&C hosted a very welcome sausage sizzle - many of the school's pupils come from Midge Point along with a fine school bus service.
This project has been a vision of John Lyons for some years along with his business partner Garry Poole of whom he bought-out some eighteen months ago so as to enable Garry to prioritise his other business interests. Soon John Lyons had other business associates interested in this far reaching project to whit many became involved to meet the legal pre-sales requirement in initiating such a development.
The Mackay Regional Council was obviously involved and to ensure the T's were crossed and the I's dotted John Lyons decided to present a Land Use Strategy paper and engaged Robyn Hanett of Town Planning Strategies from Brisbane.
The idea behind this professional approach was to illustrate in detail such a development in light of the land's topography, zoning, drainage, slopes, positional roadway ergonomics, services and health and safety issues such as core relationships to entrance / exit along with boundaries and residency entitlements such as pathways and access.
This is the bread and butter of planning companies who deal with these issues with Councils across the nation. Getting it right is the basis of one's reputation and the client, the developer, needs it to be spot on. It fell into place.
I have written previously on several occasions on the mining situation in the Galilee Basin from west of Bowen in the north all the way down to past Rockhampton with huge coal mines.
What we're witnessing right now are companies closing one mine and opening another, hardly anything to do with the quantity of coal available, rather the international coal market demanding specific grades of coal. The Galilee Basin has it all.
My articles which have been republished in mining related on-line publications have focused on the needs of the mining families and that the coal industry has recognised that family support is essential. Fly-in-Fly-out (FIFO) is only one scenario of the coal industry and in reality it's only a small part of the greater picture.
This Midge Point Carlisle Waters Estate is part of that solution. Midge Point is central to a vast proportion of the Galilee Basin coal industry. Already many miners have domiciled their families in the Midge Point – Bloomsbury region. Industry buses transport the miners to and from home, the families are settled within a 3-5 hour run and everything is nearby.
Midge Point is 20 minutes from Proserpine airport (Whitsundays) and 25 minutes to the supermarkets in Proserpine or an hour's drive to Mackay. The area has ADSL and 3G for mobile connections while the Carlisle Waters Estate has NBN lines.
Fishing and the Arts are huge in the area. The fishing club is second to none in this part of Queensland and the Basil Sellers - Carlisle Coast Developments - Midge Point $2000 Art Prize is no small feat. I established this art prize to build community along with an annual business luncheon.
Our Well-Being Australia ministry has assisted the community with a local on-line newspaper when the hard copy monthly paper shut down. We had one of our savvy young writers create the web edition. Kim Hanson who ran the hard copy now runs the on-line edition, Midge Point – Bloomsbury – News and Mews.
Moreover we've shown that this area (Laguna Quays – Midge Point) is the ideal place for missionary respite where those returning from the mission field have a place re-charge their batteries (as it were).
John Lyons has become a co-sponsor of the art prize and the business luncheon and a supporter of the respite cottage providing new hand rails and balustrade to the front steps and veranda.
What we have found is that many families have settled in this area for a sea-change. With technology as it is, many can now work from their home office with fleeting visits to the central office. TigerAir fly daily from Sydney to Proserpine for around $80 one way, a one hour 45 min flight.
Try getting from the Blue Mountains to the Sydney CBD and find a car park. We know of one businessman who runs his Melbourne business from Midge Point and travels to Melbourne once every three weeks.
Although Midge Point is not the only cab off the rank in this, many rural and regional centres around Australia have these sorts of facilities, Midge Point however does have a few things in its favour. It's not built out. Most of it is small acreages. It's close to town yet not part of the rat race. Now there is a very affordable upmarket new estate - Carlisle Waters Estate.
Dr Mark Tronson is a Baptist minister (retired) who served as the Australian cricket team chaplain for 17 years (2000 ret) and established Life After Cricket in 2001. He was recognised by the Olympic Ministry Medal in 2009 presented by Carl Lewis Olympian of the Century. He mentors young writers and has written 24 books, and enjoys writing. He is married to Delma, with four adult children and grand-children.
Mark Tronson's archive of articles can be viewed at http://www.pressserviceinternational.org/mark-tronson.html