The proposed Whitsunday Paradise development could bring a critical boost for the economy post COVID-19. Image: Supplied
The proposed Whitsunday Paradise development could bring a critical boost for the economy post COVID-19. Image: Supplied

Development in ‘limbo’ until decision from state government

NEGOTIATIONS for the $1.1 billion Whitsunday Paradise development are still ongoing, with Whitsunday Regional Council saying it would remain in "limbo" until decisions are made by the State Government.

Whitsunday Regional Council's director development services Neil McGaffin said the development would require several road and sewage upgrades, improvements and infrastructure construction before it could go ahead.

The approval for infrastructure developments like these lie with the State Government and were not in the hands of the council to approve.

"The developers of Whitsunday Shores Estate have been in negotiation with the State Government since mid-2018 over State Government interests, including required road improvements," he said.

"This will be a significant development for Bowen and the proponent will be required to construct infrastructure including a sewer pipeline to connect to the Bowen sewage treatment works, upgrades to water supply and road network improvements, as may be required by the state."

After the initial lodgement of the application in June 2018, the Whitsunday Regional Council had raised some matters and changes to the original proposal, which were addressed by the Great Rewards Group on May 1.

Mr McGaffin said the response from Great Rewards Group included changes to the original plan, which "now proposes a first stage of 181 residential lots, 290 multiple dwellings, 2.4ha of commercial/retail facilities and public open space, all of which will be delivered in 7 sub-stages, in response to market demand".

Mr McGaffin said the site was identified as a "growth area" by the council in 2009 but the development would remain in "limbo" until they heard back from the State Government.

"In terms of the time frames established in the planning legislation, the application remains in limbo until council receives notification from the state government about its requirements," he said.

"This advice has not been received to date.

"The site has been identified on council's planning scheme since 2009 as the major urban growth area for Bowen, and council looks forward to the future improved economic circumstances which could drive the construction of the estate."