The Gap (4061)
Located 8 km to Brisbane’s west, The Gap (4061) is named for its situation in a valley surrounded on all sides by hills and once accessible only through a gap between the Taylor Range and Mt Cootha. Once thickly forested, the area was subjected to intensive timber felling then farming. The land was first leased in 1851 to Darby McGrath for sheep and was first sold in 1858. To address Brisbane’s need for water, Enoggera Dam was constructed in 1866.
Today, the Dam is a popular recreational facility for swimming and exploring its surrounding bush tracks. Post World War I, returned servicemen were given small farms, and although many tried to raise cattle or poultry, most were unsuccessful. In the past, The Gap has also been home to a jam factory and a gold mine. A swimming hole, previously named Shepherd’s Pool was also a habitat for turtles, platypus and eels.
The Gap is a leafy suburb with plenty of parks and outdoor recreational facilities but is also known as the entrance to the Brisbane Forest Park, a major protected bushland designated to preserve and educate about native fauna and flora. The Gap tends to be a young family oriented suburb with lots of resources to support this including numerous sporting clubs for soccer, tennis, swimming, and athletics. There is also a golf club first formed in 1939. There is a shopping village, churches of various denominations, a police station, about five schools, and access to a fire brigade and ambulance station in an adjacent suburb.
Transport is limited to road, however, the major arterial road which runs through The Gap has been substantially widened to alleviate traffic congestion and reduce travel times directly into Brisbane and there are excellent regular bus services.
The Gap has also been vulnerable to extreme weather events such as in 2008 when it sustained severe storm damage from destructive winds, fallen trees and power cuts to private homes, businesses, and public infrastructure requiring government financial assistance.