Toora Reserve, between Murray Bridge and Mypolonga, is about to become a major recreation and watersports area.
The Murray Bridge council has published a master plan for the site and is seeking public feedback.
The plan hinges on four main priorities:
- Destination: Making the reserve a place locals and holidaymakers love to visit due to its location, amenities and beauty
- Character: Enhancing its landscape and heritage so it stands out among other riverfront reserves
- Environment: Protect nature by remediating the site and using sensitive design
- Recreation: Supporting watersport, walking, cycling, play and picnicking to reduce congestion at other reserves, especially Thiele and Avoca Dell
Willows will be removed to allow a boat ramp and ski beach to be built, at the suggestion of local wakeboarding guru Adam Bruce.
The redevelopment will also add a playground, chairs and tables, barbecues, rubbish bins and shaded areas.
Parking will be provided for cars, including those with boat trailers, and pathways constructed between points of interest such as an existing billabong.
The ultimate plan is for Toora Reserve to become a second Avoca Dell, a place buzzing with activity every weekend throughout the summer.
At present, the reserve is a bare and underused patch of grass accessible only by dirt road and not well signposted.
It is situated next door to "Thalia", an 1874 homestead and school still owned by the descendants of German settler Johann Auguste Jaensch.
The Jaensch family indicated they might consider developing the property into a cafe or accommodation facility in future, something the council bore in mind as it drew up its plan.
In time, the planned Murray Coorong Trail along the river would also pass through the reserve.
As well as drawing on the expertise of Mr Bruce, the Ngarrindjeri Regional Authority and council staff, the plan took into account feedback from 32 people who attended a consultation session at the reserve on January 27.
The redevelopment is one of the first parts of a broader master plan for Murray Bridge's riverfront to come to fruition.
- Have your say: Visit letstalk.murraybridge.sa.gov.au or the council office at 2 Seventh Street, Murray Bridge before next Wednesday, April 4.