6 major industrial projects about to land at Gympie’s doorstep
THE Gympie region is on the cusp of becoming a hive of industrial activity in the near future thanks to billions of dollars in infrastructure work sitting in the pipeline.
These are the largest which are expected to land on our doorstep in the next few years.
1. Energy cogeneration plant
This proposed plant would further cement the region as a renewable energy hub and provide yet another boost to the region’s job numbers.
Laminex and HQ Plantations have been given $600,000 between them to conduct a feasibility study for the plant, which would turn timber waste into power.
In the process it would also reduce fuel loads across the region and help mitigate the risk during fire seasons.
2. Solar farm number one
Developer SolarQ has Gympie Regional Council approval to begin building Australia’s largest solar farm at Lower Wonga.
The $2 billion facility is designed to provide power to 15 per cent of the southeast corner’s electricity needs thanks to 3 million solar panels covering 17sq km of land.
The solar farm is planned to be built in two stages.
3. Solar farm number two
Lightsource BP has its own plans to build a solar farm capable of powering 71,000 homes; and it proposed to be built just up the road from SolarQ’s project.
The company lodged three separate development applications with the council in July in an effort to secure approval to begin construction.
If successful its construction would bring about 150 jobs to the region.
4. Solar farm number three
Proving solar energy is a hot topic, developer LGI has its own set of plans for yet another solar farm at Woolooga.
The Woolooga Energy Park is a proposed 185 megawatt energy centre to be built directly opposite SolarQ’s proposal on the Wide Bay Highway.
More than 490,000 solar panels are expected to be installed at the park across 415ha, a process expected to generate at least 120 jobs.
5. Gympie Gateway Project
Gympie is being eyed by the State Government as the home of a transport and freight hub which has the potential to deliver and industrial boon to the region.
Property analyst terry Ryder said the project is “designed to capitalise on the region’s rail facilities, upgraded motorway links and affordable land for commercial and industrial enterprises”.
The exact location of the Gateway Project is unknown; sites to the north and south of the city are under consideration but yet to be finalised.
6. Tuan wind farm
This $2 billion project in the region’s north promises to deliver a windfall of construction jobs.
Once built the farm will be the largest in the southern hemisphere with 226 turbines spread across the Tuan State Forest.
It is expected to bring about 440 construction jobs.
Honourable mention – high speed train
Fast rail links between the region and the state’s capital have long been a dream for many in the region.
Now the State Government is exploring how to make that dream a reality.
The long-term proposal would build high speed links between the Gold Coast, Brisbane, Toowoomba, and the Sunshine Coat and Gympie.
And although the project is likely still some years away Gympie and the Sunshine Coast are already ahead of the game; the region is the first site under investigation for the development of a business case.