Council To Invest $4M For Monohull Ferries Restoration

Three monohull ferries, the John Oxley, Kalparrin, and Lucinda, have been pulled from Brisbane River to undergo a $4-million restoration which will enable them to re-enter service alongside the five new KittyCats that have also been added to the fleet.

Public and Active Transport Chairman Ryan Murphy confirmed the news following Brisbane City Council’s announcement that a ferry stop at Kangaroo Point will be upgraded and reopened.

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Whilst some are pleased with the news, there are residents who criticized the Council for allegedly failing to consult them regarding the closure. This transpired to a protest, where over 100 residents joined last month.

Despite the protest and disapproval from many residents, Cr Murphy said the Council is looking forward to delivering the Dockside upgrade. Council is already progressing with the terminal design and obtaining the necessary approvals for the upgrade.

Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner said the decision to remove the wooden monohull ferries from service last year was due to safety reasons.

“The risk assessment reports found the structural integrity of all wooden-hulled vessels was compromised, with some having extensive deterioration and no longer considered safe,” he said in an official statement.

Public and Active Transport Chair Councillor Ryan Murphy, said buses, trains and ferries all have a use-by-date and had to be retired and replaced at some stage.

Cr Schrinner added: “It will come at a slightly higher cost, but it’s the right thing to do. There is $1.8 million allocated in 2021-22 and more than $2.2 million in 2022-23.”

The construction of the Dockside is expected to begin in 2022 and temporary shuttle services will continue during upgrades to the Dockside terminal. 

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John Oxley interior (Photo credit: John Robert McPherson/ Wikimedia Commons)

John Oxley, one of the three ferries to be restored, was launched in June 1990 and was built by Norman R. Wrights & Sons. Like a typical CityFerry, John Oxley can accommodate 47 passengers. 

Kalparrin and Lucinda, like John Oxley, can have 47 passengers. Kalparrin, launched June 1993, was built by Queensland Port Services. It came from the An Aboriginal word meaning “to help carry a load.”

Inside CityFerry Lucinda  (Photo credit: John Robert McPherson/ Wikimedia Commons)

Lucinda, launched June 1986, was built by Norman Park Boat Builders. The name came from Lucinda, a 301-ton paddle steamer owned by the Queensland Government and was built by William Denny and Brothers, Dumbarton, Scotland in 1884.