Gold Coast Council today launched stage one of its planned $25 million Surfers Paradise refurbishment.

The project which aims to improve accessibility and safety along the beach has attracted mixed opinions from locals.

Paige Ross reports.

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Gold Coast locals and tourists finally get a glimpse of the rejuvenated Surfers Paradise walkway and facilities, with stage one now open to the public.

The new development, between Elkhorn Avenue and the northern boundary of the Soul building, includes features such as toilet blocks, beach showers, barbeque and picnic areas as well as disability access ramps.

Susie Douglas, Divisional Councillor: “This is just in time for the school holidays, just in time. We have Schoolies event, we’ve got the V8 event happening. Thousands of people coming into the precinct and this will be very popular.”

Disruption to local businesses has been a concern during the development but Surfers Paradise officials say the inconvenience should now pay off.

Lucy Cole, Surfers Paradise and Broadbeach Chamber of Commerce: “When they see this now and how it’s open and all the hoarding has come down it will give renewed enthusiasm to them and look forward to the busy holiday months ahead.”

Most locals have welcomed the revitalised Surfers Paradise project and believe it’s long overdue.

Vox 1: “Coming down it looks great. I think its going to be great for the city.”

Vox 2: “It’s fantastic I can’t wait to use it.”

Vox 3: “The esplanade looks great but there are things that are missing.”

The revised foreshore is a major milestone for the development.

Locals are looking forward to stage two when it opens late next year.

Paige Ross, QUT News.