A MULTI-MILLION dollar wave pool in Ipswich may seem unlikely but Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale is determined the city can make a splash in the surfing world.
Cr Pisasale has confirmed the Ipswich City Council is in discussions with a Gold Coast-based businessman about conducting a $100,000 feasibility study into the concept.
If Ipswich gets the nod, areas with available land on public transport corridors such as Springfield, Ripley Valley or even Rosewood would be considered as possible locations.
The Gold Coast is also in the running after former mayor Ron Clark, who originally shied away from the concept, was replaced by Tom Tate in April.
Despite being landlocked, Cr Pisasale said Ipswich was the perfect location for the new surfing-themed tourist attraction.
"We are a great location for a wave pool so I'm driving this," Cr Pisasale said.
"Existing feasibility studies show the western corridor needs another tourist attraction.
"Tourists don't see the boundaries of Ipswich, Logan and the Gold Coast and we are closer to Brisbane airport than the Gold Coast."
While the wave pool itself is expected to cost $5 million to $10 million, any development would likely include attractions such as slides, pools and even white water rafting or canoeing courses.
Gold Coast Surf Industry Taskforce chairman John Nielsen is the brains behind the concept.
Mr Nielsen said Dubai-based company Select Contracts, which built a $75 million water park in Dubai, was already in place to conduct the feasibility study.
Cr Pisasale said negotiations were continuing about funding the study, but ratepayers would not fund the construction project.
Mr Nielsen said if Ipswich was serious about the project it could be up and running inside three years.
"We have a 20% growth in surfing globally and we just can't congest the natural locations anymore," he said.
"People already drive four hours to get to a venue, so recreationally this has a massive application, particularly in places like Ipswich.
"Ipswich needs things to do - it is hot and the perfect climate for this type of facility."