Four Corners - Ocean Views
The rush is on for a beachside lifestyle...but in the drive for a sea-change are we in danger of loving our beaches to death? Australia's coastline is under pressure as never before. Four Corners looks at the sensitive issue of coastal development through the prism of the Tweed Shire, a picturesque and once sleepy hollow on the NSW side of the border from the Gold Coast.
Developers from the Gold Coast are now pouring into the Tweed, having discovered treasures like Kingscliff and Cabarita, tiny beachside villages that are now the sites of vast and contentious projects. Pro-business supporters face off against greenies and the nostalgic types who don't want change in the place where they grew up.
The conflict plays out vividly in the Tweed Shire Council, where election campaigns are always fierce and sometimes downright dirty. The winners get the responsibility of deciding which multi-million dollar developments get built, and which ones don't. Councillors have let Four Corners film its proceedings; the result is a remarkable record of the tensions at work among these ordinary men and women.
Stephen McDonell's report on development Tweed-style is a parable of the pressures on Australia's vast coastline, and on the people who decide what becomes of it.
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