Noosa River Markets
Unfortunately a Noosaville Business Association quest to fund decorative lighting along the river walk and in Thomas Street to enhance the leisure and eating experience has been dealt another blow by Noosa Council.
Despite the backing of some councillors, the association has been told an application to hold a “Noosa River Food Walk” event once a month for a trial period has been rejected.
“We are disappointed by Council’s decision, particularly as it comes after Council rejected a previous submission for a similar, but different event, from us last year,” said NBA president Jim Lloyd.
“Like the rejuvenated Thomas Street Food Festival, which also fell foul of Council after a small number of complaints, all our efforts for the past three to four years have been to find a regular source of funding to brighten up the foreshore and eating precinct to the benefit of both tourists and locals.
Better lighting, both in terms of ambience and security, has been at the top of every survey the Association has undertaken. And as Council, from our continual approaches, never seems to have the funds to make this happen, this has become the Association’s major focus.
The Noosa River Food Walk was planned to be held once a month on a Friday night for three hours in a small part of the Noosa River foreshore at Gympie Terrace. The dates were chosen specifically not to conflict with any other regular event in Noosa.At most times of the year, this area is under-utilised and further activation can only be a bonus for the community.
Ironically, the concept for the Noosa River Food Walk was developed in response to the feedback Council provided about the markets and we worked very closely with Council officers before submitting the application. We took on board all suggestions made by Council and felt the submitted proposal was one which the council would be eager to support.
We deliberately established rules which meant that only food vendors would be allowed to participate, and that local vendors would be granted sites before anyone from outside of Noosa would be able to book a site.
Initial indications were that most of the vendors would be sourced from Gympie Terrace itself and other close-by areas.
It was called a “walk” as the food vendors would provide hand-sized food bites, which would allow people to walk to the next site.
There was no request made to council for funding and no objections submitted from anyone who opposed the event. It is really quite hard to fathom why this event would not receive more support from Council,” Mr Lloyd said.
In the rejection letter to the Association, Council Property Advisor Denis Wallace said the Temporary Event Application for the foodwalk had undergone internal Council stakeholder consultation, including councillors.
He said "the similarities with the Association’s previous Thomas Street market and its proposed Noosa River Foreshore market were broadly noted.
While the foodwalk proposal is smaller scale, it is in a nearby location and likely to create similar issues relating to low parking availability and objections from existing Noosaville businesses not involved in the event.
The proposal to commence in January during school holidays is a significant concern. Noosa River foreshore is highly patronised and utilised during summer evenings.
The application suggests a need to “activate the Noosa River foreshore area” but Council currently does not support this view."
Mr Wallace said Council intends to develop a Noosaville Foreshore Land Use Masterplan in 2017.
Noosaville Business Association are disappointed with Council’s decision and would like to thank the community for their overwhelming level of support. The NBA will despite this setback continue to work on behalf of Noosaville businesses to enhance the Noosaville experience for visitors and locals alike.
To download the full media release please click nba-food-walk-rejection-media-release