The first step in the City of Greater Geraldton’s commitment to help manage and protect coastal vegetation at Point Moore has been completed, with new boom gates installed on Friday. The gates are at two key access tracks along the beach following extensive community consultation, in which almost 800 residents were surveyed. Following that process, the City of Greater Geraldton council decided to introduce the gates — rather than proceed with a proposed vehicle ban — to protect coastal vegetation while also allowing vehicle access and prioritising the safety of beach users. “The majority of people (surveyed last year) were deeply concerned about protecting the sensitive coastal ecosystem,” Mayor Shane Van Styn said. “Most people who drive on the beach are respectful of pedestrians and the environment, so we did not want to ban vehicle access. “However, due to the changing nature of the coast, it is important to be able to prevent vehicles from driving on the beach when there is insufficient space between the dune and the waterline.” The boom gates allow beach access when the conditions permit, and restrict access when the conditions are deemed too risky. Their installation was partially funded by a $76,000 Coastwest grant awarded to the City by the Department of Planning, Lands, and Heritage. Additional works will include sand-trapping fences, brushing and potential CCTV camera installation, pending budget approval.