Extension over Airlie Creek given green light
THE Deck restaurant will soon live up to its namesake after approvals for a 3.5m alfresco dining area that extends over Airlie Creek was given the final green light last week.
The extension, which was spearheaded by the Heart Hotel, will include a cantilevered deck that juts out from the side of the building.
The new structure will overhang Airlie Creek with structural support fixings connected to the Heart Hotel.
Fixed glazing balustrades with a steel top will line the new deck and pelmet blinds will be installed along the side overlooking the creek.
The deck will be tiled with imitation timber and the structure will have a Colorbond roof that matches the adjoining Heart Hotel.
Original plans show the new deck will provide an additional 75sq m of dining space.
Public access between the Airlie Beach lagoon car park and the main street alongside The Deck will also be maintained.
Whitsunday Regional Council development services director Neil McGaffin said the project had been in the works for several years.
The extension was included in the council's draft land management plan for the Airlie Beach foreshore reserves in 2018.
In the draft plan, it was stated that "the proposed deck will contribute to the amenity of the creek by covering a dirty, unsightly area and increase the use of the reserve by creating additional usable space".
It was also indicated that rent received from the outdoor dining permit would be channelled back into the maintenance and upkeep of the reserve.
Mr McGaffin said the final council approval, which was issued last Thursday, means work can now begin on the project.
"It's taken a long time to get this far because they've been dealing with the fact that it's over public land," he said.
"They've got the lease, they've got the approval and they're ready to go."
A development permit and a term lease from the council was approved, as was an application to the Department of Natural Resources, Mines and Energy.
Mr McGaffin said the project also received support from the Whitsundays Rivers Trust.
The application was criticised by a resident in early 2017 who was concerned the deck was built beyond the company's "existing boundaries".