The facility – located west of Yorkeys Knob Boating Club marina – will include a six-lane boat ramp with three floating walkways, two breakwaters, a car park and access road, footpath and amenities block on completion.
Hall Contracting CEO Cameron Hall said the new public infrastructure would improve safety and reduce congestion at the existing Yorkeys Knob boat ramp.
“The waterways around Cairns are incredibly popular with tourists and locals alike, so the facility will reduce wait times for boaties launching and retrieving their vessels on the north side of the Cairns CBD,” Mr Hall said.
The $22.4 million project is jointly funded by Transport and Main Roads and Cairns Regional Council.
Mr Hall said since commencing works in February 2022, the team had dredged approximately 20,000 cubic metres of material from Half Moon Bay to form a harbour basin and access channel.
“The dredged material was reclaimed and used to form a platform that will accommodate a carpark with 63 car spaces and 135 car-trailer spaces on completion,” he said.
“The conclusion of the dredging and reclamation works marks the halfway point for this project, and places us on track to finalise construction activities in March 2022, weather permitting.”
Mr Hall said with part of the work site located within the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, extreme care had been taken to protect the local environment.
“Stringent water quality measures are in place, and our team has undertaken regular water quality monitoring during the dredging campaign to ensure we’ve met these parameters at all times,” Mr Hall said.
“We have also taken steps to identify and protect vulnerable species of ant plant which are native to the area and have had traditional owners and cultural heritage advisors on site to oversee our operations.”
Mr Hall said the team was currently focused on constructing the new boat ramp and adding additional layers of rock to the two breakwaters, with approximately 15 workers on site each day.
A Queensland-based company, Hall Contracting has previously undertaken a range of work in Cairns and surrounds, including widening and deepening the Trinity Inlet shipping channel at Port of Cairns, renourishing Holloways Beach and carrying out maintenance dredging within the Bluewater canal system.