Coast Falls Behind On New Projects

Gympie has copped labels like “backward” and “backwater” from southeast Queensland residents for years, But the city overtook the Gold Coast in one crucial area in April.

Just 15 residential and commercial projects kicked off on the Gold Coast in April, while Gympie – which has a population of 49,334 – had two more developments start that month.

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Message to Gold Coast City Council: “please be more transparent – Claims that the Council has delivered $50 million worth of direct relief and incentive to industry is not helpful and not transparent. Based on those types of numbers we should be booming as a city but we are not because the reality is far different.

The Gold Coast in fact has significantly higher charges than surrounding Local Government areas (eg. Logan, Ipswich and Brisbane). The truth is that Gold Coast City Council needs to actually deliver real incentive to development rather than claim massive stimulation to our sector, that has clearly been calculated using creative accountancy. Why else would our construction numbers be so poor? For example in the year to date for 2011 the Gold Coast’s residential and commercial building starts are down 85% when compared to the same period in 2010 (Ie. 253 building starts this year to April verse 1714 building starts in 2010 to April). A town like Gympie with a population of less than 50,000 people (less than one tenth of the size of the Gold Coast), has more building starts than the Gold Coast. (Source: Gold Coast Bulletin, 1st June 2011, P.25, Lucy Arden).

The proof is in the numbers – the construction and development sector have all but left town and it is because the Gold Coast City Council has to date not been using best practice within the city – The Council needs to get charges at a par or better than surrounding Local Government areas.”