Call to rebuild the CBD rather than build a flood levee
"IF it's good for Gympie, I'm in favour of it," Billy's Hotel owner Lesley Mitchell said yesterday, when asked about the Gympie CBD flood levee plan.
"But I don't think it is good for Gympie - and I'm one of the beneficiaries," she said.
"I do not believe in spending that amount of money to protect an area that should be redeveloped.
"With $30 million we could do something great."
She was among a surprisingly large proportion of flood prone CBD business people who said they had doubts about the idea.
The Gympie Times yesterday began a first hand survey of affected businesses, talking initially to Rex Lohse at Bridgestone Service Centre, Denise Sterling and Siobhan Wilson at Parklane Garden Centre (Monkland St), Eric and Kayley Sprott at Sprott's Stainless Steel (Barter St) and Mrs Mitchell.
Mr Lohse said the levee would be three-quarters built if the idea switched from a levee at the touch grounds to one built on a raised Bruce Hwy between Monkland St and Albert Park.
"But there's more to Gympie business than our section around here," he said.
"I'm like everyone else. I don't want to get flooded either. My biggest concern is I don't want it interfering with someone else's home.
"If they prove to me that the levee won't do that that's okay, but a house is personal," he said.
"Don't want it, don't want to pay for it," said Denise Sterling, of Parklane Garden Centre. "We have friends in other areas who aren't going to be helped, but they will pay for it," partner Siobhan Wilson said.
Eric and Kayley Sprott did not oppose the idea but were concerned about how quickly waters would rise if the flood reached even slightly over the top of the levee.