At first I wasn’t sure whether or not this was actually a April Fools article printed a day late… but the Canberra Times Online has an article proposing that the naval station at Belconnen should become a tourist attraction serving several purposes:
(a) preserving the historic naval station as a museum,
(b) providing a tourist attraction targeting Asian tourism and
(c) preserving the endangered grasslands.
The proposal is not totally without merit as there are similar attractions already operating in the Territory. The first that comes to mind being “Gold Creek Station” a tourist facility that is run by John and Beverley Starr on the Gold Creek Homestead site in Gungahlin. Here tourists experience typical activities of a sheep station including watching dogs work the sheep, experience sheep shearing fist hand, informed about aspects of the wool industry and get to sample the culinary delights of the ubiquitous “Aussie BBQ”.
The proposed concept for the Naval Station is highly divergent of the aspirations that the ACT Government had of making the highly PCB contaminated site into affordable accommodation… but you have to give people credit for coming up with novel ideas.
[Ed. This was also sent in by Thumper who makes an important note below - the site is owned by Defence]
If the concept is accepted by Defence, the 143ha site at the centre of Canberra’s kangaroo cull controversy would remain Commonwealth land and its combined attractions could raise millions of dollars as a tourism venue.
It would also protect the site’s grasslands from future housing subdivision.