The new K’gari-Fraser Island World Heritage Discovery Centre will be based at SeaLink’s Kingfisher Bay Resort. The Discovery Centre is a joint project of the University of the Sunshine Coast and Kingfisher Bay Resort.
The aim is to develop a visitor experience that promotes K’gari’s UNESCO World Heritage status and highlights its unique environmental and cultural values.
Located at a convenient place for visitors accessing the Great Sandy National Park, the Centre will focus on the World Heritage value of the Island, including unique features such as long sandy beaches, tall forests growing in sand, perched lakes, significant dune systems, coloured sands and K’gari’s flora and fauna. The Butchulla people are also recognised for their central role in K’gari’s story and the role they play in caring for the Island today. European history of logging and sand mining also feature, along with the fight to protect the Island.
To date, stakeholders have been consulted, an interpretation plan has been drafted that includes the proposed content and visual images, and a conceptual design for the refurbishment of the building (an ex-childcare centre) has been developed. USC design students are working on a series of information panels which will tell K’gari’s World Heritage story.
The Butchulla Aboriginal Corporation has endorsed the plan, and Aunty Gayle Minniecon is providing advice on the project. The World Heritage Discovery Centre will complement the Cultural Centre planned for Central Station.
Contributed by Dr Kim Walker, University of the Sunshine Coast