Bundaberg Regional Council has unanimously approved a major stage of The Gateway project, an integrated marina and resort development. It is claimed the development will transform the coastal town of Burnett Heads, four hours north of Brisbane and at the southern tip of the Great Barrier Reef, into a vibrant tourism, lifestyle and leisure destination.
When complete, The Gateway will be a mixed-use marina village located around the shores of the Burnett Heads Boat Harbour. With an estimated value of $50 million, the recently approved stage will deliver up to 140 marina berths and automated 24-hour fuel dock linked to a marina village offering water’s edge accommodation, a boutique retail precinct, café and restaurant, gymnasium, offices and a yacht club.
Also in the approval phase, currently being considered by council, is a residential precinct with low-rise apartments, waterfront villas, a hotel resort and convention centre with eco-villas all linked via a public waterfront boardwalk. If approved, multimodal bike and walking paths with green open spaces and BBQ pavilions will offer amenity for residents and visitors, contributing positively to the existing community of Burnett Heads.
Sydney based BH Developments QLD Pty Ltd (BHD) Managing Director Simon Harvey said after years of working closely with Bundaberg Regional Council and the community he was very pleased with the approval and it was a major milestone for the project and the region.
“With marina projects, creating a safe, sheltered harbour usually becomes the responsibility of the developer. In this case, the harbour already existed, and the fact that it is in an idyllic setting surrounded by so many amazing and accessible attractions makes it the perfect location for this project,” he said.
“The strong support we have received from the Bundaberg Regional Council and Gladstone Ports Corporation has been very refreshing and we look forward to continuing to work closely to ensure the successful delivery of this major project that will bring strong economic growth to Burnett Heads and the region.
“With the confidence of the approval granted, we have provisioned to deliver stage 1A that will include 38 marina berths, a fuel dock, plus an enhanced marina building with amenities to ensure berth holders have everything they need as we progress our plans to deliver the first of the new buildings under the recently approved Development Application.
“Stage 1A works can be undertaken immediately under an existing ‘wet’ approval and a recently granted Minor Works approval. The on-land works will see the establishment of a marina office with convenience store, chandlery and tour facilities, as well as a Gateway Marina display suite that will provide information to the community about the development, with works due to commence early in the New Year when trades resume.”
Meanwhile, dredging of the Burnett Heads boat harbour continues in preparation to accommodate the first of the marina berths in the new year.
“This is a considered, multi-staged development and we want the community to share the journey with us as we continue to work closely with Council and the community to progress the project over the next few years,” Mr Harvey said.
Expressions of interest are already being sought for the first 38 marina berths that will be designed to accommodate single and multi-hull vessels up to 27 metres and commercial vessels up to 32 metres. In addition to berthing opportunities, Gateway Marina will also be a hub for a unique blend of maritime and tourism activities.
Gateway Marina operations Manager Gary Milne said, “We have been overwhelmed with expressions of interest for marina berths due to the project’s unique position at the mouth of the river in a safe boat harbour. There has also been strong enquiry for both apartment sales and retail spaces to lease.
“Environmental considerations have also played a big role throughout the planning process. We are committed to sustainable development through criteria of environmental education and information, environmental management, safety and water quality within the marina."
“Gateway Marina will be created in line with criteria outlined by the Clean Marina Program with Marina Industries Association of Australia (MIAA) which aligns with the internationally recognised ISO14001 Environmental Management Plan.
“Green technologies for power, rainwater harvesting, and use of recyclable and sustainable materials are all important considerations.” Mr Milne said.
BH Developments is committed to ensuring all aspects of conservation and environmental considerations are thoroughly addressed and have commissioned a comprehensive study by the country’s foremost expert on marine turtles, Pendoley Environmental, who have prepared a Turtle Management Plan for the entire development,
The significant civil works aspect of the development and large building construction works has the potential to create hundreds of local jobs, not just in direct construction trades, but in professional consulting firms such as engineers, landscape architects, lighting consultants and environmental consultants. When complete, The Gateway will employ hundreds more to maintain the facility and operate multiple businesses at the Marina Village.
Those eager to learn more about the project and lodge an interest in leasing a berth or buying real-estate should visit www.gatewaymarina.com.au for more information.