A kayaker paddles in the clear waters off Dunk Island. PICTURE: ANNA ROGERS
A kayaker paddles in the clear waters off Dunk Island. PICTURE: ANNA ROGERS

Potential freeze on Dunk Island mega project

Works on a multimillion-dollar redevelopment of Dunk Island could be put on hold for up to six weeks as the project's investment company faces legal woes.

Key parts of investment firm Mayfair 101, which had plans for a beachside bar and a revival of water sports at the island's spit off Mission Beach, was recently appointed provisional liquidators by the Federal Court.

Redevelopment plans for the Dunk Island spit reveal a shaded lounge area to the south of the public jetty.
Redevelopment plans for the Dunk Island spit reveal a shaded lounge area to the south of the public jetty.

A court last week also banned the firm's managing director, James Mawhinney, from leaving or attempting to leave Australia.

The estimated $1.6bn project to transform Dunk Island, which was forecast to inject a much-needed boost to the region's economy, was put in jeopardy after the Australian Securities and Investments Commission sought and won freezing orders against Mr Mawhinney during a hearing last week.

Mayfair Iconic Properties hired Seaswift's Malu Chief to transport heavy machinery to Dunk Island in February 2020
Mayfair Iconic Properties hired Seaswift's Malu Chief to transport heavy machinery to Dunk Island in February 2020

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A Cassowary Coast Regional Council spokesman said the completion of the Dunk Island mega project could now be delayed.

"Council has been made aware of a recent judgment handed down by the Federal Court relating to entities forming part of Mayfair 101's operations," he said.

"Council has been advised that this may result in a freeze on Mayfair's ability to undertake capital works on the Dunk Island spit for a period of up to 42 days.

"At this time all contractual obligations have been met and there has been no change to the current lease agreement."

Despite the redevelopment hurdle, it's business as usual for the remainder of Dunk Island and Mission Beach area.

"While it is not appropriate for council to comment further on Mayfair 101's general business situation, council can advise Mission Beach Water Taxis is still taking bookings for Dunk Island and spit camp sites and walking tracks and amenities (toilets and showers) are available to the public," the council spokesman said.

"Barbecues have been removed as part of redevelopment works and are yet to be replaced."

Originally published as Potential freeze on Dunk Island mega project


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