In June 1979 the Queensland Government approved a canal estate development in Raby Bay which would expand the suburb of Cleveland into the bay using land reclamation to create waterfront building sites for prestige residential and commercial purposes with canal access to Raby Bay for recreational boats moored either at the individual properties or in marinas. Construction commenced in 1983 and the first stage was officially opened on 23 November 1984 with 158 blocks to be sold at prices between $53,000 to $96,000 each. The canal estate was marketed under the name Raby Bay and this name is commonly used as a neighbourhood name to distinguish this land from that of the rest of Cleveland (of which it is officially part). As with other canal estates in Queensland, the Redland City Council finds itself under pressure to provide for maintenance of the canals in these canal estates as the original development company no longer exists. In 2014, it was estimated up to 23 kilometres of canal wall were in need of repair. The owners of the properties in the canal estate claim they should not have to pay a levy as the canals are not part of their land and should be maintained by the council in the same way as roads. However, other residents in Redland City do not believe that their rates should be increased to pay for expenses associated with residents who chose to purchase land in a canal estate.
Raby Bay is known for its seagrass meadows, which support the local dugong population. The canal estate development destroyed seagrass meadows, mangroves and roosting sites for migratory wading birds. However, there are signs the seagrass is recovering in Raby Bay with sightings of the dugongs within the canals. However, larger populations of dugongs can be found in the Ormiston parts of the bay which have not been so affected by development.
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- "Cleveland and Cleveland Shire". Queensland Places. Centre for the Government of Queensland, University of Queensland. Retrieved 4 April 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
- "Cleveland Lighthouse (former) (entry 600772)". Queensland Heritage Register. Queensland Heritage Council. Retrieved 5 April 2015.
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- "Raby Bay canals highlight need for developers to pay for infrastructure". Redland City Bulletin. 14 October 2014. Retrieved 4 April 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
- "Seagrass Watch e-Bulletin" (PDF). Seagrass-Watch. 30 January 2009. Retrieved 5 April 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
Media related to Raby Bay at Wikimedia Commons