Queensland Air Museum, seeking an extension of their existing lease to incorporate part of vacant land adjacent to the Museum.
After many years attempting to negotiate the facility’s growth with the Sunshine Coast Council who are trustees of the land and the State Government without success, the QAM’s volunteers have reached the decision to petition the State Government.
“Cameron Elmes and the team at QAM have been extremely patient pursuing a lease extension but they have been met with brick wall after brick wall. I can understand their frustration with bloody minded bureaucracy,” Mr McArdle said.
“QAM has been based in Caloundra for over 30 years and holds the largest collection of civil and military aircraft and aviation memorabilia in all of Australia but this collection has outgrown the Museum’s current land. It is an important tourist attraction and growing its footprint can only add to its importance.
“The team at QAM should be allowed to develop their facilities which benefit the community. At the same time, they and I are aware that environmental and cultural issues may arise and are very happy to work through them.”
Queensland Air Museum President Cameron Elmes said after 8 years of going backwards and forwards with no real movement, it is now time to get this matter resolved.
“We’re ready to expand. We have a very strong volunteer workforce and we’ve been frustrated for quite a long time with the lack of moving forward,” Mr Elmes said.
“The Museum sees 25,000 visitors each year, but we find a lot of people don’t know where we are because we can’t be seen from the main road. Improving our presence would be fantastic for the economy of the southern end of the Coast.
“We want to build some new hangers to put the aircrafts that are outside, indoors; new workshops; a number of new aircrafts are in the pipeline for us to acquire but we’re not sure if we can say yes because we’ve run out of room.
“It could be a great loss to the Sunshine Coast and Queensland,” Mr Elmes concluded.
“It is of the utmost importance – now more than ever – that we support our struggling tourism industry by helping successful facilities to grow,” Mr McArdle said.
“The tremendous success of this Museum is a testament to the hard work of a very dedicated team of volunteers.
“They have given so much of their lives to create a collection that is both a triumph for aviation history and our local community. Now it is the community’s turn to support their bid by signing this petition,” Mr McArdle concluded.
The petition can be signed in person by visiting the Queensland Air Museum or the Caloundra Electorate Office at 1/20 Ormuz Ave Caloundra. It can be signed online by visiting: https://www.parliament.qld.gov.au/work-of-assembly/petitions/petition-details?id=3355