A $1.1 billion residential development approved by the Whitsunday Regional Council could see the population of popular North Queensland town Bowen jump by 50 per cent.
The Whitsunday Paradise project, being undertaken by Gold Coast-based company GRW, will be a masterplanned community comprising 2000 dwellings for up to 5000 people.
It will also feature a commercial centre and associated sporting fields and parks. According to the 2016 Census the population of Bowen was 10,377.
The development will take advantage of the rapidly growing town, with Bowen a jump-off point for those looking to holiday in the Whitsundays while the Abbot Point coal terminal is a also nearby.
According to REIQ data published earlier this year there were 2813 dwellings sold in the Bowen-Whitsunday region in the year to April 2020, a 17 per cent jump from the previous year and 23.8 per cent above the five-year average for the region.
GRW general manager Blake Thomas said he was very pleased with the outcome after years of planning and negotiations and the group was now hoping to start preliminary works on the first stage before December.
"We are planning on calling tenders on up to $40 million worth of infrastructure upgrades for the Bowen region after Christmas.," he said.
"The infrastructure works, which will include improvements to the Bruce Highway and to Bowen's water and sewerage system, will alone create 84 jobs for the Bowen region,'' Thomas said.
"The Whitsunday Paradise is a 20-year commitment for our team and we will be a long -term partner in the growth of the Bowen region.
"The development will contribute $1.129 billion to the regional economy across the 10 stages of the project."
The company lodged its applications with the State Government and the Whitsunday Regional Council for the project, earmarked for a 235ha site 8km south of Bowen, in June 2018.
Business News Australia