The GKI Resort will greatly improve the lifestyle opportunities for the Central Queensland community.
The new Resort will be something the community can be proud of. It will provide the community with significantly improved access to the Island to more easily enjoy what GKI has to offer. The new and modern environment will provide a range of activities including designated bush walking tracks, fishing trips, leisure cruises, cafes and restaurants, bar, golfing, day spa facility or just the ability to lounge around on a beautiful beach.
Never before have the residents of Central Queensland had the ability to access such a facility. Residents and business owners alike will have the opportunity to benefit from the GKI Resort. Events, weddings, sporting competitions, conservation and education activities – the community resource and social benefits that the new Resort will provide are significant.
The GKI Resort will improve access to the Island and around it. At present it is difficult for children, some adults, the elderly and the disabled to arrive at the Island with no disabled or ramp facilities available. Once they do arrive, it is exceedingly difficult for them to access the middle of the Island. A new ferry terminal, will provide safe, equitable and all weather access to the Island. Ensuring that all locals and tourists are able to visit Great Keppel Island.
As a community resource it is important that the GKI Resort ensures equitable access and use of the Island. The project proponent is committed to the provision of equitable and inclusive access as part of the proposed Great Keppel Island Revitalisation Plan. The project proponent realises that improved access enhances opportunities, particularly for people with a disability, to access employment, education and services, and to connect with the broader community. Equitable access will be provided between the mainland and Great Keppel Island, around the resort and a number of the resort rooms and other facilities will be provided. The proposed all-weather access marina will facilitate access for the elderly, people in a wheelchair and families with small children the opportunity to easily travel to and from the Island for the first time ever. Currently visitors to the Island must disembark the boat in the water. The project proponent is committed to engaging with community organisations during the design stage to discuss ways in which equitable and inclusive access can be facilitated to, not only allow access for the first time ever, but also allow a greater enjoyment of the resort and resort facilities, employment opportunities and to enjoy the Island’s natural features.
The GKI Resort will generate over $150 million per annum within the Capricorn Region. The Plan will contribute significantly to the ongoing economic development and financial wellbeing of the Region. In addition to directly injected capital and visitor spend, the flow on effect from increased economic diversity is more significant.
This project will diversify the Capricorn Region beyond the resource and agricultural sectors. A new chapter in economic development and diversity, this growth will have a flow on effect throughout the entire region, positively impacting on multiple industries. Benefits will include: diversity of opportunity and new and broadened business opportunities for increased or expanded service/product provision both directly to the Resort and in association with the increased tourism activity.
With better access to the island and improved economic diversity in the region comes employment opportunity. The project itself will create over 1,400 full-time, part-time and casual jobs and be the largest employer along the Capricorn Coast.
Increased opportunities for new and diverse job opportunities within the tourism, hospitality and service industries are an evident flow on benefit. Positive impacts for local businesses and their increased job opportunities are also significant. From landscapers, florists, massage therapists, fishing charters, plumbers, electricians, builders, to healthcare professionals the benefits are tangible.
Currently many young locals also leave the area to start their careers. These job opportunities could prevent this ‘brain drain’ and encourage young, skilled professionals to stay within the Capricorn Region.
The GKI Resort would establish a genuine tourism industry in Central Queensland. This would represent the most significant tourism investment in Queensland for over 20 years and would direct the Queensland tourism focus on the Capricorn Coast. The flow on effects for Capricorn Coast businesses will be substantial.
The proposed development would be the most sustainably advanced resort in the Great Barrier Reef and Australia’s first truly ‘carbon positive’ (feeding power back to the grid) and Green Globe certified resort. The Resort will be low-rise and feature rooftop solar panels and water tanks. The project will establish a 575 hectare Environmental Protection Area on the Island and the first Research Centre within the Keppel Islands. The project will demonstrate that the environment and tourism industry can not only co-exist but benefit from each other.