Local families and visitors to the southern Sunshine Coast are set to benefit from a long-overdue re-development of the Metropolitan-Caloundra Surf Life Saving Club’s clubhouse in Kings Beach, under a re-elected Liberal National Government.
The $2.6 million pledge will see the development of a communications and command centre for regional emergency services; an operations base for lifesavers and lifeguards undertaking coastal patrols and surveillance; an education centre for all-abilities training, safety, and recreation programs like Nippers. It will also offer upgraded beach ramps and amenities for volunteers, members, and beachgoers of all abilities.
Federal Member for Fisher and Speaker of the House of Representatives, Andrew Wallace, who is himself a surf lifesaver at Alexandra Headland SLSC, said he and the club had been fighting for the project for several years.
“The transformation of this 70-year-old facility will meet the needs of a modern, inclusive surf lifesaving club, along with the demands of a rapidly expanding Caloundra community.
“This is a huge credit to club president Jim Chisholm, and his team at Met-Cal and demonstrates once again that the Liberal National Government is committed to keeping families safe and backing local community groups.”
The re-development project is supported by $2.4 million from the Sunshine Coast Council, as well as funds contributed by the club.
Councillor for Division 2, Terry Landsberg said that the announcement comes at a crucial time for the Kings Beach life saving facility and will greatly improve its functionality to keep our locals and tourists safe.
“The southern end of the Sunshine Coast is experiencing the largest growth rate in decades, with approximately 45,000 people set to call Caloundra south home over the coming years,” said Cr Landsberg.
“The changes to the northern tip of Bribie Island affecting the existing Caloundra bar will further extend the patrol footprint of the lifeguard service and club.
“I look forward to Council working with the club and the Federal Government to help deliver this project.”
President of Metropolitan-Caloundra SLSC, Jim Chisholm, welcomed the announcement as a game-changer for the club and the local community.
“It allows us to expand our Nippers program, store and mobilise our gear safely, and increase the accessibility of our activities to include people of all abilities. With the shifting Caloundra coastline, it also enables us to better monitor and respond to emerging issues, emergencies, and critical incidents,” said Mr Chisholm. “It really is a great announcement. This kind of commitment from the Federal Government, along with the funding provided by the Sunshine Coast Council and monies raised by the club will provide a space which we can use for the benefit of the community for many years to come.”