Developers behind Bowen's Whitsunday Paradise Development hope to get approval from the council next week. Picture: Supplied
Developers behind Bowen's Whitsunday Paradise Development hope to get approval from the council next week. Picture: Supplied

Hopes for green light on $1.1 billion project this week

DEVELOPERS behind the $1.1 billion Whitsunday Paradise project have high hopes for a green light from the council next week.

The company behind the development, Greater Rewards Group, is pushing for final approval after extensions were granted last month.

Issues with sewerage connections, reticulated water and recreation space caused a delay in approval from Whitsunday Regional Council.

Speaking in September, the council's development services director Neil McGaffin said the earliest he expected the project to be presented to the council would be the end of October.

"If we get the infrastructure contributions wrong it could impose an unnecessary burden on council and that's what we want to prevent," he said.

Greater Rewards Group general manager Blake Thomas speaking about the Whitsunday Paradise development at the Bowen Chamber of Commerce meeting on August 13, 2020.
Greater Rewards Group general manager Blake Thomas speaking about the Whitsunday Paradise development at the Bowen Chamber of Commerce meeting on August 13, 2020.

"We've got a responsibility to make sure the ratepayers aren't contributing more than they should over the short and the long term."

Greater Rewards Group general manager Blake Thomas said the company was eagerly awaiting a decision so they could know the next step in the project's life.

"We are keen to start getting under way and calling for tenders for $40 million worth of infrastructure upgrades for the Bowen region if the council gives up approval for the project,'' he said.

"If the council provides the approval, we potentially give the Bowen region a fantastic Christmas present in the form of 84 jobs if we are able to start awarding contracts.

"The works would include improvements to the Bruce Highway and to Bowen's water and sewerage system."

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The development is expected to contribute $1.129 billion to the region's economy over its 10 stages.

The first stage of the project is planned to include 200 new housing lots, an AFL field with clubhouse and a service centre with food outlets, growing to 2000 dwellings over the next 20 years.

Mr Thomas said the project would house up to 5000 people over the next 20 years through traditional houses, townhouses, units, commercial premises and potentially tourist accommodation.


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