Gin Gin hostel put on hold

GIN Gin's hopes of a backpacker hostel being built may have been dashed, as developers confirmed the project had stalled.

Bundaberg Regional Council approved a development application for a 192-bed backpacker hostel to be built on Mulgrave St in April 2009.

But developer Ron Smith yesterday said the project had been put on hold, but would not comment on the reasons behind it.

"I can't see it going ahead in the foreseeable future," Mr Smith said.

Council planning and development spokesman Ross Sommerfeld said he was disappointed to see the project put on the backburner.

"This is a definitely a big loss for Gin Gin," Cr Sommerfeld said.

"I really think it would have helped the citrus and smallcrops farms."

Cr Sommerfeld said he believed finances had played a role in the development being shelved.

"I just think it was the cost of getting it up and running," he said.

"There were a lot of delays and that didn't help."

Division 3 councillor Wayne Honor said the hostel would have created employment opportunities in Gin Gin.

"We have three of the top 10 citrus farms in Australia in Gin Gin who could well have done with some backpacker labour," he said.

"Backpackers stimulate local business and bolster tourism.

"While some people might see backpackers as taking their jobs, in another way they're making jobs at places like cafes, bus companies, hotels and other small businesses."



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