Motel plans have been modified to ensure it doesn’t impinge on heritage buildings.
Motel plans have been modified to ensure it doesn’t impinge on heritage buildings. Contributed

Gympie Motel given green light

DEVELOPERS of the Gympie Motel, on the site of the Surface Hill Uniting Church in Channon St, have been given the green light for a slightly scaled-down version of the 38-room project that is "more sympathetic with the surrounding area".

Though the motel will still be a combination of two and three storeys high, the total height of the buildings will not exceed 10m (from the natural ground level to the uppermost projection) so the heritage-listed church will still dominate the landscape at 15m high.

More landscaping and open space areas have also been added, in particular at the corner of Channon St and Barter St and around the motel pool.

The Gympie Regional Council gave preliminary approval last month but asked for a number of small changes so the motel did not dwarf other buildings in the area, which include historic Kingston House across the road and the Gympie Nursing Centre.

A restaurant on-site will only be available to motel patrons, not the general public, the council heard this week.

The 5000sq m block is bound by Reef, Barter and Channon Sts, and the plan is to demolish the Uniting Care Community building to make way for the motel rooms and restaurant.

The church hall will be relocated beside the church, and the Wesley Hall will be converted into office space.

Development portfolio councillor Ian Petersen said the revised plans were "much better" in that they showed more respect for the church, included more open space and would lead to a more picturesque development.

"The applicants have been very amenable and this is a good result for Gympie," Cr Petersen said. "It should a real asset."

 

AT A GLANCE

  • 38-room motel cnr of Channon, Reef and Barter Sts
  • Pool
  • Restaurant
  • Office space
  • Heritage listed Surface Hill Uniting Church to be preserved and protected
  • Stone wall to be preserved
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