Fast Ships ask for more time
Fast Ships Ltd, the proponent for a fast ferry service between Ettalong Beach and Sydney, has asked Gosford Council to extend by a year its deadline to provide the infrastructure and service.
Fast Ships told the council that it was experiencing difficulties in securing a vessel for the project.
It stated that a 12-month delay was anticipated in securing a vessel and asked for "the time to provide the various components" be extended by 12 months.
Council officers have recommended approval for the extension stating that council should "agree to Fast Ships Ltd's request for a 12-month extension to complete the infrastructure and provide a fast ferry service between the Central Coast and Sydney".
Officers stated that the earliest date for commencement of the ferry service without breach was June 27, 2008.
Fast Ships now want to extend the date to June 27, 2009.
Council officers stated that the company had submitted a draft construction program, and had applied for the certificates and plans required by part of clause 6.1 which includes a development environment plan and development quality assurance plan.
Council officers stated that if council terminated the agreement, it could delay the project for a period that might exceed one year.
It stated that "it is in the public's interest that council proceed in its endeavours to facilitate the provision of an alternative mode of transport between the Central Coast and Sydney".
It further stated that "arrangements with Fast Ships Ltd are at an advanced stage and negotiations between Fast Ships Ltd and vessel providers are proceeding.
"Accordingly, at this stage it is recommended that council continue its arrangements with Fast Ships Ltd and grant a 12-month extension for it to complete the infrastructure and provide a fast ferry service between the Central Coast and Sydney."
The company obtained development consent for the wharf and terminal building last year.
A report from council stated that "other than preliminary works, no works have been commenced on either the wharf, infrastructure or the provision of a vessel".
Council agenda COR.16, 27 Feb 2007