The town square is being built as a ‘staging post’ as part of the Cobb & Co. Tourist Drive initiative in honour of the original stage coach company that ran services in Queensland from 1866 until 1924.
Tourism and Libraries Committee Chairperson Councillor David Pahlke said the new town square would be built for visitors travelling from Ipswich and Toowoomba wanting an alternate historic route to the Warrego Highway.
“The Cobb & Co. coaches used to travel between these two main regional centres, forging an important transport link for people, mail and goods,” he said.
“To honour their services, a number of towns along the route have been selected to have ‘staging posts’ to commemorate the coach service and the history behind each town being involved.
“I’ve always been a strong supporter of preserving and promoting Rosewood’s history and this new town centre will be a wonderful way to greet tourists to our region and explain more about where we came from.
“I’ve been very keen to have this staging post built as a town centre for some time now, so I am thrilled that construction will soon begin.
“Thanks must also go to Mayor Paul Pisasale for his support in allowing me to get this project up and running.
“It will include historical information, toilets, barbecue facilities or be close to cafes, restaurants and food outlets that are open seven days a week.
“A main feature of the park will be the display of a replica Cobb & Co coach, which will be housed in a themed structure for secure viewing, with information about the coach displayed.
“As it is not possible to replicate the original route, the Cobb & Co. tourist drive will follow the railway line and the road from Ipswich to Gatton while providing historical significance,” Cr Pahlke said.
Other towns that will have ‘staging posts’ are Forest Hill and Gatton.
Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale said the historical contribution the new town centre would provide in the region would be invaluable.
“The Cobb & Co. coaches were a vital transport system in the western corridor of the state, and it is very important that we celebrate their existence and make people aware of their history in developing this state,” he said.
The Cobb & Co. Tourist Drive was developed as a joint initiative between Ipswich City Council and the former Laidley and Gatton Shire Councils (now amalgamated as the Lockyer Valley Regional Council), the Queensland Heritage Trail Network and Queensland Government.
Stages 1-3 of the Rosewood Town Square will be located on William and John Streets, and cost $500,000 and is due to be completed by 2013