Mine Construction Could Spark Construction In Airlie
Confirmation that Adani’s Galilee Basin mine will start construction in the September quarter next year could be the trigger to start a new construction phase in the Whitsundays.
PRDnationwide Principal, Christie Leet, said accommodation houses and tourism operators were operating at close to capacity and any significant boost to demand would be an incentive for further development.
“The Adani mine, port expansion, and rail construction will generate thousands of extra pay cheques in the region,” Mr Leet said.
“These workers will want somewhere to relax and enjoy the Queensland lifestyle on their four days off. What better place to recreate and enjoy family living than the Whitsunday’s.”
“If other conditions remain favourable, such as a lower Australian dollar, (one of the drivers for continued tourism growth) we will not have the capacity to meet demand, especially in peak times.
“As we have seen from past experiences, building new accommodation stock (such as Mirage Whitsunday and Mantra previously) would bring about 200 contractors and workers to town and we would be in another boom phase.”
Mr Leet said the mine was very isolated in Western Queensland and most workers would fly in and out from regional centres.
“If Mackay, Bowen, Townsville, or especially Proserpine became a Fly-In-Fly-Out (FIFO) departure point, we would be looking at a huge boost in demand for family homes,” he said.
“If you are going to be doing the hard work out west, you will want to set the family up in a place where they can enjoy a great lifestyle and a place where time off work is like a real holiday.
“There couldn’t be a better trade-off for FIFO work than having a home base in the Whitsundays.”
“Some local groups raised concerns about the reef and water quality, in particular when the port expansion plan included offshore disposal of dredge spoil.
“But the proposal now provides for disposal on land and stringent approval conditions actually require a net improvement in water quality.
“With approvals in place and the mine looking to get under way next year, the Whitsundays can not afford to miss this opportunity for a major boost to the local economy and to take the Whitsundays to the next level.
“By developing a stronger economic base, the Whitsundays will be more able to ride out any economic bumps in the future, making one of Australia’s best holiday and lifestyle experiences more sustainable.”