Why southeast success is key to Gympie growth
THERE is an old joke that the best road in a rural area is the one leading out of town.
But it turns out it is the truth for Gympie - not because of what that road lets out but what it brings in.
The region's links to Brisbane and the Sunshine Coast have been flagged by property guru Terry Ryder as two of the three most significant growth drivers at our fingertips.
A new report by the hostpotting.com founder, commissioned by the Gympie Chamber of Commerce, has laid out the not only the region's strengths, but where its new opportunities reside.
"Being only 40km north of Cooroy … Gympie stands to benefit from the ripple effect as the Sunshine Coast economy continues to expand," the marketting report says.
"Easy access from Brisbane means the region is luring more day-trippers and holiday-makers, especially since the implementation of interstate travel restrictions. Rainbow Beach (together with Fraser Island) has been identified as an increasingly popular holiday destination by Booking.com."
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Mr Ryder said the region's growth will just as likely be driven by projects outside its boundaries as within.
He said the Sunshine Coast's new $300 million international runway will "open up new opportunities", as will the undersea broadband international internet cable.
"Due for completion in 2020, the undersea cable will deliver the fastest international connection point from the east coast of Australia to Asia," Mr Ryder says in the report.
"The undersea cable project is projected to deliver over 800 jobs and bring $900 million into the region's economy."
Fast rail could also join the party, with the State Government investigating a 160km/h or more connection between the Sunshine Coast/Gympie and Brisbane.
Mr Ryder said these were key reasons why the State Government was looking at establishing a warehousing hub in the region; the Gympie Gateway Project.
Regional Development Australia's Scott Rowe said it would be "an opportunity for the Gympie region to establish a warehousing precinct and become a freight hub for big businesses".
The exact location of the hub has yet to be determined; north and south of the city have been flagged as possibilities.