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Airlie Beach Lagoon

The Airlie Beach Lagoon is 4,300sqm and is filled with 4.5 million litres of fresh, self-chlorinated water. Located parallel to the Main Street, on the foreshore of Airlie Beach. It is built on a raised breakwater, giving an excellent view out to the Coral Sea and Whitsunday Islands. And it's FREE!!
The Airlie Beach Lagoon has a rich history, and it starts well before 8 January 2001, when it was officially opened by the Premier Peter Beattie.
One of the local newspapers, the Whitsunday Times, celebrated 25 years of publication in 2006, and their commemorative publication recounts the Lagoon's history as follows:
1992 – The Shire Chairman made the historic announcement that Council would build and/or lobby for a deep water, stinger free lagoon on Airlie's main beach. The call consolidated years of community pressure to implement a range of similar concepts.
1993 – Local community, leading businesses and tourism organisations were all working hard to raise funds toward the lagoon – 'Loot for the Lagoon' became the catch cry at many a fundraising event.
1994 – In January, Shire Chairman Glen Patullo was pulling out all stops to get Airlie's lagoon funded and built. The shire borrowed $200,000 to get the project going and the community was raising many more thousands with the help of Fantasea's David Hutchen and his 'Loot for the Lagoon' campaign. The public gave huge support. However, potential funding for the lagoon was threatened as a developer's lease on Muddy Bay expired in August, ending plans for a resort and marina on the shire – along with a promised contribution for Airlie's long proposed swimming lagoon.
1995 – By the year's end, Council had appointed new consultants to do a feasibility study on the proposed Airlie lagoon. The study was to form part of an application for State funding in February 1996.
1996 – By late March, Council was reviewing several plans for half and full sized swimming lagoons. By May, Council was slammed for proposing a shire-wide referendum on the lagoon as part of its annual rates billing process, as it was suggested this would set lagoon plans back yet another year.
1998 – By September, the new Labor tourism minister Bob Gibbs had given strong initial support for the Airlie Beach Lagoon. Vision Airlie was continuing active lobbying, and while the impact assessable study was pending, Vision Airlie coordinator Justin Gamble presented the project to the Premier.
1999 – After years of hard fought coastal lobbying, consultation, design changes, impact studies and community fundraising, the Airlie Beach Lagoon was finally given the go-ahead in June. By September, the Beattie government had allocated $8 million to the project. Despite the objections of a minority of residents or business owners adjoining the lagoon's site, the region's 'silent majority' welcomed the historic news.
2000 – History of earth-shaking proportions was made on 17 April as Premier Peter Beattie watched over the first works at the Airlie Beach Lagoon. Mayor Mario Demartini, joined in with Deputy Premier Jim Elder and construction officials."If anyone should be remembered for this, it's the likes of Bill Smith, David Hutchen, Tony Moscato and John McCulloch," former Cr Tony Price said. "They should have bloody statues put up for their efforts".
December saw a new date being set for the much anticipated opening of Airlie's lagoon – the project had progressed rapidly and below budget with a community celebration planned for mid February.
2001 – On 8 January, the now famous Airlie Beach Lagoon was officially opened to the public by Premier Peter Beattie.


 
Airlie beach Lagoon
Airlie beach Lagoon Entrance
Airlie beach Lagoon
Airlie beach Lagoon
Airlie beach Lagoon
Airlie beach Lagoon Northside
Airlie beach Lagoon
Airlie beach Lagoon beachend