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Coffs Harbour’s Big Banana preparing for future with reduced passing trade

Coffs Harbour’s Big Banana preparing for future with reduced passing trade
May 9, 2018

The Federal Government’s 2018/19 budget allocation of $970 million for a bypass redirecting the Pacific Highway around the city of Coffs Harbour is likely to have a significant impact on visitor numbers at the popular Big Banana attraction.

With the bypass set to leave the Big Banana about a kilometre away from holiday traffic using the new road, Big Banana General Manager Michael Lockman said his team had already been preparing for the day the traffic disappeared.

Lockman told ABC Coffs Coast “we knew the bypass was coming. The land had been acquired some time ago, so we've been working on it for five years and we'll continue to work on it.”

"We've basically been focusing on really lifting the standards so it makes it a must-stop for people, somewhere they can break that trip whether there's a bypass or not.

Originally built in 1964, the Big Banana was redeveloped in 1989 at a cost of $30 million. A waterpark was added in ????.

The attraction brings up to 900,000 visitors a year and includes plantation tours, an ice rink and a waterpark.

The Coffs Harbour Visitor Information Centre moved to the site in 2014 to help market the rest of the region to tourists.

Locals have generally been supportive of the new bypass, with the town having experienced growing traffic volume in recent years.

Images: The Big Banana (top) and high traffic volumes in Coffs Harbour have prompted calls for the bypass (below, courtesy of ozroads.com.au

8th May 2018 - AUSTRALIAN TOURISM EXPORT COUNCIL CALLS FOR FEDERAL BUDGET TO BACK TOURISM

15th October 2017 - UNCERTAIN FUTURE FOR AUSTRALIA’S AGEING ‘BIG THINGS’

10th May 2017 - FEDERAL BUDGET CUTS TOURISM AUSTRALIA FUNDING, ‘PUTS JOBS AT RISK’

6th July 2016 - REGIONAL TOURISM OVERHAUL TO UNLOCK POTENTIAL OF NSW VISITOR ECONOMY 

12th March 2016 - TTF REVEALS PLAN FOR TOURISM TO ‘TURBOCHARGE’ THE AUSTRALIAN ECONOMY 

13th October 2015 - BIG BANANA STARTS WATERPARK OPERATIONS UNDER NEW BRAND 

16th August 2015 - AUSTRALIA URGED TO EMBRACE ITS ICONIC ‘BIG THINGS’ 

6th August 2015 - EVENTS TO ATTRACT VISITORS TO THE COFFS COAST

9th November 2010 - COFFS HARBOUR’S POOL UPGRADE REOPENS ON TIME AND ON BUDGET


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We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?

The news we publish at www.ausleisure.com.au is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.

However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.

Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.

Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.

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