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Carey Park a possible site for second Gold Coast casino

Fri, Nov 23, 11:25am by Staff Writer

Despite a Queensland council’s reluctance, Gold Coast’s second casino could be built at Carey Park in Southport as part of the ‘Global Tourism Hub’ on the Gold Coast.

The Gold Coast City Council’s Planning Committee voted to remove itself from decision making aspects of the project, given it has little determination on where the site will be.

Carey Park was disendorsed by Full Council in October 2017 in favour of privately owned land elsewhere in the city.

A list of potential sites for the controversial project circulated this week and listed Carey Park, with the state government still considering the location despite council’s lack of support.

At the Planning Committee meeting, Southport Councillor Dawn Crichlow referenced the confidential list for the Hub when she asked if the park’s heritage listing would prevent a casino from being built there.

Committee chair Cameron Caldwell replied, “no”.

On the decision to distance themselves from the project, Mr Caldwell told 9News, “this is a state government process … it’s too early for us to get involved.”

“It’s up to (the state government) to run the process. We do look forward to seeing what the results are.”

The Queensland Government is aiming to attract national and international investors as part of an A$25billion tourism boost to the region that will support more than 200,000 jobs.

The tourism hub would seek to attract high-profile musical acts, contain apartments, a shopping centre and gaming venue.

The Gold Coast may not be able to sustain a second casino

Analysts from Macquarie have disputed the necessity of a second Gold Coast casino despite the projected boost in tourism.

David Gabris and Andy Chuk said the Gold Coast was “not the most attractive market” for a new integrated resort and casino relative to other regions in Australia.

Their analysis centres around the existing casino on the Gold Coast, The Star Gold Coast that has a 45 per cent market share.

The market generated A$616 million in gaming revenues in the 2018 fiscal year, underpinned by one of Australia’s highest domestic per capita gaming spends.

“Given the market structure, a new competitor would be arguably challenged to expand the domestic market with an investment case most likely based on taking significant domestic market share from the incumbents,” Macquarie said.

A spokesman for The Star dismissed talk of a rival casino and said, “we are informed by government there is no process under way. Our position is well known. We are excited by the approval of our A$2 billion-plus expanded masterplan for The Star Gold Coast.

The Star Gold Coast was formerly known as Jupiters Casino until 2007 after opening in 1986.

The seven-acre complex includes eight bars, seven restaurants, conference facilities, a ballroom, theatre, health spa and gym.

The hotel has 592 rooms across 21 floors.

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