Planning is on track for a major redevelopment of the Deagon Racecourse with residents encouraged to have their say on the proposed changes.
While the site will remain an “equine precinct” with stabling, an equine hospital and an education centre for apprentice jockeys, other plans for the racecourse could include retail, dining and accommodation options.
Deagon Racing Club chief, Walter Kuhn, said the proposed development was “very exciting”.
“At this stage, we’re just talking about a consultation period and what the community wants there,” he said.
“The area has been deemed for equine racing and to keep that focus, and for that facility to become the be all and end all of training for the industry, would be great.
“An equine hospital would be awesome – the closest one to us is Toowoomba. And you know, hypothetically, to have facilities there like a coffee shop, people could come along in the morning, have their coffee and watch the horses train,” Mr Kuhn said.
He said there was plenty of space at the racecourse and that it was currently not being used to its full potential.
“The options really are endless – sporting fields, stabling facilities, apartments,” Mr Kuhn said.
“This proposal is really exciting and will bring the area into the 21st century.”
State Member for Sandgate, Stirling Hinchliffe, said northside residents were invited to help shape the future of the historic facility, paving the way for an enhanced training hub as well as opening up new community and commercial uses supporting jobs in the local economy.
“This is about enhancing Deagon’s status as a training hub while creating an inclusive community space for the enjoyment of local residents,” he said.
“A new and improved Deagon Training Centre will also bring important economic benefits and is expected to create 60 new racing jobs on site, along with dozens more during the construction phase.
“Additionally, the increased presence of trainers, jockeys, stable hands and farriers is expected to inject millions into the 4017 economy.”
Deagon Ward councillor, Jared Cassidy, said the master planning process was intended to complement the Sandgate District Neighborhood Planning process, which was already underway.
“The racecourse has been identified by Council as a catalytic site,” Cr Cassidy said.
“I’m pleased that consideration of Deagon’s future use will align with the Neighbourhood Plan.”
Racing Queensland and the Brisbane Racing Club will be asking for community input on other uses for the site, including sports facilities, cafes, shopping and entertainment areas and farmers markets.