MOVING AHEAD: Brett Jeffrey working onsite at the new Room Motels site in Gympie. There's plenty to do externally but the interiors are almost complete. The motel will open new year.
MOVING AHEAD: Brett Jeffrey working onsite at the new Room Motels site in Gympie. There's plenty to do externally but the interiors are almost complete. The motel will open new year. Renee Albrecht

From a muddy Bruce H'way plot to 30 units almost over night

THE skyline of Gympie featured a large crane for three days last week as the latest development along the Bruce Highway progressed.

A motel, currently under construction between the Woolworths Service Station and the Dragon Garden restaurant has gone from an almost empty muddy plot to a complex of 30 units in the space of a week, thanks largely to the pre-built construction technique used.

A series of poles have been driven deep into the bedrock to support the units, which at the moment resemble shipping containers but inside are largely completed.

"Inside they're done. All you need is your toothbrush and a change of clothes. All we need to do internally is fit the air-conditioners and install the TVs," said builder Jim Bale of Bale Constructions yesterday.

The pre-built units were constructed in Shanghai and moved on-site from Yatala over four days, on the backs of 30 trucks, and the crane was used last Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday to manoeuvre them into position.

There is still a bit to be done externally, with balconies and staircases to be completed and attached and a couple of walkways between the two "wings" and a lot of work to be done on the manager's unit and central elevator.

There will also have to be landscaping and levelling for the car parks underneath the units and something developer Colin Buckley called the central podium, will be constructed.

"The podium would be an interesting feature of the development and something we're looking forward to sharing with the people of Gympie," Mr Buckley said.

The motel, the latest in the Room Motels chain, is the fourth modular construction taken on by Mr Buckley and his family, who have also constructed around 25 houses in a modular style.

A feature of the motel will be keypad entry and online bookings.

Mr Buckley is hoping the motel will be ready to open by February next year.