Lindeman Island, in the Whitsundays, is set to undergo a $600 million redevelopment of its existing resort in a co-ordinated project with the Queensland Government.
The proposal includes the construction of a marina, six-star spa resort and five-star eco resort by developer White Horse Australia Lindeman Pty Ltd.
Currently in the draft environment impact stage, State Development Minister Anthony Lynham said the development was the first "co-ordinated project" declared in Queensland for 18 months.
Nearly 37 hectares of Lindeman Island National Park will be privatised if the Whitehorse Developments plans are approved.
The island’s previous recreation facility, the Club Med Resort, was one of the many victims of Tropical Cyclone Yasi, falling into disrepair and ultimately closing in January 2012.
The resort was subsequently purchased for $12 million in 2012 by White Horse's owner, China-based media mogul William Han, who then submitted a masterplan for a $583 million redevelopment project - the Lindeman Great Barrier Reef Resort.
Minister Lynham said that while the redevelopment is consistent with the State Government's Advancing Tourism plan to support growth and jobs in the tourism industry, its location within the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area requires the implementation of appropriate safeguards to protect the Reef.
According to White Horse’s proposal, the project is likely to create an average of 865 construction-related jobs each year on-site and off-site during the construction period and a further 300 full time equivalent jobs on the Island once operational.
Operationally the resort is expected to contribute $140 million to the Mackay Region’s Gross Regional Product and $195 million to Queensland’s Gross Product.
White Horse are currently awaiting a result on their recently submitted Environmental Impact Study, with public comments welcome until September. While no specific timeline has been released, the resort is expected to reach completion by 2020.