Welcome to this weeks edition of my Cairns News Report, a complimentary ‘week in review’ of all the pertinent news stories on what’s happening in and around Cairns.
If you missed any of the top Cairns news stories from last three weeks (yeah, things have been a little hectic for me with travel, illness and school holidays), here they all are in full below. Just click the title to read the full story.
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Aboud and for Sale, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 16 Sep 2020
Billionaire courts developers for CBD Site, crystal brook collection owner Ghassan Aboud has put one of his cairns properties on the market as the city grapples with a fragile economy. The Syrian billionaire has built three luxury hotels in the cairns CBD with Riley open to tourists, Only Bailey’s apartment tower functioning and Flynn’s grand opening pushed back to early 2021.
Isolate Return Aussies in Cairns, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 16 Sep 2020
A push to make Cairns a quarantine hub for Australians returning from overseas has divided opinion as family of stranded residents plead for permission to reunite with loved ones. Leichhardt MP Warren Entsch sparked a community debate when he urged Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk to ramp up the intake of quarantine travellers in order to fill the city’s empty hotels and increase airport activity.
Hotel Quarantine Jam, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 17 Sep 2020
Cairns and the Gold Coast have been identified as ideal quarantine locations as the Federal Government increases the cap on the number of Australians re-entering the country. But the move presents a dilemma for hoteliers. Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack said up to 2000 more Australians stranded overseas would be allowed back into the country each week, lifting the cap from 4000 to 6000.
Hotels offer up isolation services, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 18 Sep 2020
A hotel chain wants to establish a new quarantine hub in Cairns as states are urged to increase the intake of Australians returning from overseas. Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack nominated Cairns and the Gold Coast as logical locations to house a share of 500 extra travellers expected to undergo quarantine in Queensland each week.
$300 M Course Change, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 18 Sep 2020
Golf Geoff Ogilvy believes a ball change is coming to reduce the distance tour golf’s long bombers can hit. And it appears tour pros may end up playing a different ball from club golfers. Ogilvy, the 2006 US Open champion, believes momentum of influential opinion for change has been building toward a critical mass.
More Events Pop Up, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 18 Sep 2020
The former Bunnings building turned pop-up stadium could host more than just sport as the State Government aims to get bang for its buck from their $2.65 million spend. Three Suncorp Super Netball games will become the first events held at the Spence Street site this weekend.
Top Flight Action Drawing in Thousands of Visitors, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 18 Sep 2020
A Cavalcade of sporting events coming through Cairns during September is expected to bring a desperately-needed 10,000 visitor night stays to the region. This weekend’s series of three Suncorp Super Netball games, along with the city’s hosting of a fourth AFL game, will turn the city into a sporting mecca with thousands of locals relishing the chance to see top flight action.
Jet star Uses Cairns to fix it its Airbuses, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 19 Sep 2020
Jet star is ramping up its activities in Cairns by using the city’s airport to service some of its Airbus A320 aircraft while another three jets are now based in the Far North. An airline spokesman said three Airbus A320s in Cairns now operated 60 weekly flights to and from Adelaide, Darwin, Brisbane, Gold Coast and Sydney.
Real Estate Merger Aims for Top Spot, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 19 Sep 2020
Two leading and independent Cairns real estate agents are merging and they have already set an ambitious target to become the biggest in the Far North and one of the largest in Queensland. Elite Real Estate Services and Twomey Schriber Property Group are set to combine their services and databases in December, move into a new office in Sheridan St, and operate as one entity under the latter’s trading name.
New Bridge set to offer Safe Passage, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 22 Sep 2020
A critical new pedestrian overpass has been confirmed for one of Cairns’ biggest highway upgrades in decades as development ramps up in the city’s south. The Queensland Government has confirmed a long pedestrian bridge will be built south of the Draper Rd intersection as part of the $481m Edmonton- to- Gordonvale Bruce Highway package of works.
Direct Flight to Income, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 22 Sep 2020
Direct international flights could return to Cairns from several locations as part of a bid for the city to host 1000 quarantine travellers at once. Negotiations between Far North hotel operators and the state and federal governments are under way ahead of Queensland accepting an extra 500 Australians returning from overseas per week.
Targa’s Millions for FNQ Tourism, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 22 Sep 2020
Organisers of the popular event, which drew drivers from across the country preCOVID-19, have inked a deal with the State Government through to 2023. The pandemic enforced a reduced field when the race was held around the region this month with only 95 cars – all but three of which were local entrants – taking part and generating about $1.5m for the economy.
Cruising is back on, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 23 Sep 2020
A Cairns cruise company will lead the domestic industry’s COVID-19 recovery when it embarks on its first voyage since the pandemic forced the sector to its knees earlier this year. Coral Expeditions, the small-ship operator that specialises in boutique itineraries, will be the first Cruise Line International Association (CLIA) Company to restart operations in Australia when it launches a seven-night journey around the Great Barrier Reef on October 14.
Appetising Glimpse of $28m Dining Precinct, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 23 Sep 2020
Wednesday’s council meeting will vote on the big budget project, which includes a 20 per cent cost contingency in case the end price is higher than anticipated. Artist impressions and 3D fly-through videos have already given an idea of what the end product will look like – but new images show the vision at an individual restaurant level.
Building Boost, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 24 Sep 2020
Luke Stein of Strategic Builders is hiring more carpenters with large-scale jobs on Cape York and in the Torres Strait. But Master Builders are warning of a looming skills shortage. Carpenters and concreters are in hot demand across the Far North after a massive boost in land sales and building project approvals.
Quicker Growth Hinges on Loan, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 24 Sep 2020
A New $18 million reservoir to fast-track massive residential development in the southern corridor of Cairns is about to be brought forward by years if one crucial decision is made. Townsville developer Frederik Kroymans wants to launch the potential 1500-lot Pine crest subdivision at Mount Peter as quickly as possible to capitalise on a spike in home construction.
Locals Rush For Land, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 25 Sep 2020
Overwhelming demand for land across the Far North has sparked the launch of a new residential development. Avalon Cairns at Goldsborough Valley is the latest project by WER Developments Pty Ltd – the company behind Botanica Lifestyle Resort and Redlynch Valley Estate.
Resort Lifestyle Housing, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 25 Sep 2020
A unique, multimilliondollar housing development complete with its own doctor, hairdresser, bowling green and cinema is being planned for Port Douglas. Port Pacific Development director Danny Gray said the gated community would include 42 one and two-bedroom homes sprawled across the 1.7ha property between the Oaks Resort and Reef Resort.
Esplanade Evolution, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 26 Sep 2020
Big traffic and parking changes are coming to the Cairns Esplanade in just a matter of days as work surges ahead on a $28 million redevelopment. The waterside strip’s outdoor dining precinct is getting an overhaul but the road will be open to participants in the Ironman triathlon this weekend.
Southern Invasion, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 26 Sep 2020
Southerners escaping COVID-19 states are providing a welcome surge in the Far North’s property market. The buyers are snapping up homes sight unseen. Real estate agents say there has been a considerable spike in people from Sydney and Melbourne wanting to buy and relocate to the Far North.
Palms Decision Looms, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 28 Sep 2020
Kewara Beach residents have not given up on the likelihood of Cairns Regional Council rejecting the $300mplus Paradise Palms redevelopment next month. Developer Darren Halpin has overhauled the master plan for the residential, tourist park and water park project on the site of what was once the city’s premier golf course.
The Beat Grows on, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 28 Sep 2020
Far North streets will be safer with the addition of at least 150 new officers as part of the biggest state wide recruitment for the Queensland Police Service in about three decades. The new recruits are part of a 2025 extra police commitment that Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said would be delivered across the state over the next five years.
Woolies keen on New Estate but Seeks Delay, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 29 Sep 2020
Woolworths wants to build a big residential subdivision right next door to one of its most controversial shopping centre developments in Cairns — but there is a catch. The supermarket giant’s property arm, Fabcot Pty Ltd, applied to Cairns Regional Council for a four-year extension to construct the handy new neighbourhood beside its approved Gordonvale West Shopping Centre.
Changes to mend $5b NAIF, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 30 Sep 2020
A $5 billion infrastructure fund criticized for failing to get money out the door will be overhauled to take on riskier projects. Sweeping changes to the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility to be unveiled on Wednesday follow a statutory review that found the fund needed to do more to get money to projects.
Hotel hub Plan Stalls, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 01 Oct 2020
A Push for Cairns to become Queensland’s chief quarantine hub for thousands of Australians returning from overseas has hit a fork in the road. Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has not ruled out using shuttered Cairns hotels to house some of the 500 extra Queenslanders expected to be repatriated each week — but another favorite has emerged.
$15m Claim Premier on Land, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 01 Oct 2020
It will be the Premier’s hit for-six commitment to round off a big-spending visit to Cairns with major funding also unveiled for the marine and police sectors. The $15m pledge, coupled with a $10m federal guarantee, should lock down all of the land needed to upgrade Cairns Hospital to a tertiary level.
Netflix Coming to Town, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 01 Oct 2020
A New Netflix series to be filmed in Port Douglas is expected to provide an economic windfall for the region. The global streaming service will beam the seaside location to more than 190 countries through a 12-part mystery drama called Dive Club, creating at least 110 jobs and pumping more than $8 million into the Far North community.
University gets $76m Loan for Key Upgrades, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 02 Oct 2020
Remote education access, hundreds of jobs and future investments at CQ University have been strengthened against the coronavirus courtesy of a multimillion-dollar government loan. The university is set to receive up to $76 million from the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility fund to secure capital works and upgrades to digital infrastructure in the next two years.
Buyers Pouncing on Stock, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 03 Oct 2020
The catalyst for the surge in demand for property comes as no surprise – the Federal Government’s Home Builder initiative has kept everyone in the housing industry busy with Master Builders Far North Queensland reporting 178 new single dwelling approvals from June to August.
Crime Site on Radar, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 03 Oct 2020
A notorious caravan park smack bang in the middle of Cairns’ M suburbs has emerged as the most likely location of a new police station. The Cairns Villa and Leisure Park on Pease St at Manoora has been the site of many crimes for years, including violence and drug use, with police regularly called there.
Suite Life to begin at New Flynn Hotel, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 03 Oct 2020
Crystal Book Collection is about to announce the opening date of a $180 million hotel in Cairns after months of delays – and it has glass bottomed pools. The growing hospitality chain, owned by Syrian billionaire Ghassan Aboud, has been waiting since March to finally open its five-star Flynn hotel on the Esplanade. The date has been set for Tuesday, November 10.
Hospital Ready to Land on Target, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 03 Oct 2020
James Cook University is ready to get started on a $50 million research facility beside the Cairns Hospital as soon as the land has been bought – but several major hurdles must first be passed. Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk this week announced $15m to buy the property required for the Cairns University Hospital project.
Upgrading Dodgy Road on the Radar, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 03 Oct 2020
The Opposition Leader has finally wound up a 1400km road trip along the highway from Brisbane to Cairns to scope out problem spots and spruik her election infrastructure plan along the way. She visited CaPTA Group’s Tropic Wings bus depot in Cairns to stress the funding was budgeted despite there being no firm commitment from the Federal Government for its $26.4 billion share.
Travel Calls Bubble Up, Cairns Post e-Paper, the Cairns Post – 03 Oct 2020
Calls for a travel bubble between the Far North and Singapore have been made following the Asian country reopening its border to Australia. The calls come after the city-state on Friday made the announcement, which excludes Victoria, to begin on October 8.
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