10 May 2023

Rumour mill quashed by Cape York NRM

| Sarah Martin
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Cape York NRM biodiversity project officer James Dobson and project officer Ben Ansell at the former bakery site in Cooktown.

THERE will be no McDonalds, nor a KFC at the old Cooktown Bakery block, with the rumour mill put to bed this month when Cape York NRM announced it had purchased the site.

Ever since the bakery went up in flames two years ago, locals have been whispering about options for the premium block on the corner of Charlotte and Hogg streets.

Some have even suggested the site was going to house a new supermarket.

However, Cape York Natural Resource Management CEO Adam Sadler has quashed those rumours.

“There was a lot of commentary about it being a KFC or a Woolies,” he said.

“We’ve put the sign up at the block to highlight to everyone that we’re investing in our region and that our future is going to be at that site.”

Mr Sadler said he was unable to go into detail about the bigger plans ahead, with the board yet to determine exactly what the new site will look like.

“At the last board meeting, the board endorsed a master planning exercise,” he said.

“We haven’t got a detailed perspective of what we’re going to do – we are still working to set up a project team at the moment.”

Cape York Weekly understands that NRM will look at creating a large office space on the half-acre block, with the view to potentially adding accommodation quarters for some staff or visitors.

There is also talk that Cooktown will become the sole office for the organisation, with Cape York NRM currently housing some staff in Atherton.

“It’s exciting but we just haven’t locked in the details yet,” Mr Sadler said.

“We’ve had a big year, the team’s delivered a lot with all our business partners and we’re making a difference across the landscape.

“There are a lot of projects and opportunities in the pipeline.”

Mr Sadler said Cape York residents could expect more news in the early part of 2023.

“On behalf of the team we want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a happy and safe festive season,” he said.

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