Coast told it’s crunch time for Caloundra South
  • Thursday 08 April 2010

Council’s vision for a truly sustainable Sunshine Coast has suffered more blows with both the state government yet to decide the future of the Caloundra Aerodrome and vital elements of council’s plans for Caloundra South rejected.

The changes to the proposed Caloundra South Structure Plan include:

  • the removal of council’s requirement that the state commit to CAMCOS within two years of development starting;
  • the removal of the requirement for 2000 hectares of land dedicated to vegetation rehabilitation to offset the development;
  • the removal of best practice standards for sustainable development
  • changing the maximum proposed population of 46,250 to become the minimum.

The Caloundra Structure Plan is on public display until 20 May 2010 and the community is urged to take a stand and send a clear message to the government about its vision for the region’s future.

Mayor Bob Abbot said it was now or never for the community to speak up on the plans for this major Sunshine Coast development.

“Right now every resident has the opportunity to express their views on the largest greenfield development ever planned for the Sunshine Coast,” Cr Abbot said.

“Council wanted to create an outstanding transit-oriented, sustainable community on this site and we devoted a lot of time and resources to getting the planning right. The state’s changes do not support our vision.

“The government’s decision to pull back from a commitment to CAMCOS and change its alignment, scrapping rehabilitation areas, reducing vegetation buffers and making our maximum population for the area a minimum target is worrying.

“We are also very concerned that we have been asked to take this structure plan to the community for their comment without knowing the future of the Caloundra Aerodrome.”

Statutory and Regional Planning portfolio holder, Cr Russell Green said the government’s changes to the original plans should spur to action every resident who supported council’s aim to create a sustainable future for the region.

“Make the way you feel about the changes to council’s plans for development at Caloundra South count by making a submission,” Cr Green said

“Council has worked long and hard to bring together its vision for sustainability and the state’s requirement for the biggest greenfield development to ever hit the Coast. It’s really disappointing to have so many key elements deleted from our plans.

“The community has only 30 business days to respond and I hope as many people as possible will take this final opportunity to have their say on development that will define the future of the Sunshine Coast forever.”

Other changes imposed by the state government include:

  • Making council’s maximum population for Caloundra South, 46,250, the minimum for the area, and the maximum number of dwellings, 22,000, the minimum
  • Reducing the buffer to the Bruce Highway from 200 metres to 80 metres
  • Removing the requirement that the development be offset by 2000 ha of rehabilitation
  • Removing the requirement for a master plan application to include an integrated water cycle management plan, energy management plan, sustainable transport plan, traffic and transport plan, groundwater management plan and affordable living plan
  • Removing higher standards for energy efficiency and sustainability of houses and buildings than those mandated through the Building Code of Australia and Queensland Development Code
  • Removing council’s requirement for CAMCOS (or a comparable alternative) to be delivered within two years of the start of development, leaving Caloundra South without a key component of the dedicated, integrated public transport network.
  • Amending the CAMCOS alignment to that previously studied by the Department of Transport and Main Roads, a corridor with greater environmental impacts and fewer benefits to future passengers and the built environment.
  • Council has been instructed to allow for artificial lakes, canals and other water bodies which from previous experiences could have detrimental environmental impacts and ongoing significant asset management implications.
  • Removing the Urban Development Area, considered by council to be a key definition to resolve site planning issues at the outset.
  • Instruction to remove public and community housing targets.

Council will receive written submissions until 4.30 pm on Thursday 20 May.

Visit council’s customer service centres, libraries or website to view the Caloundra South Structure Plan and associated planning scheme amendments and to find out how to have your say.

For further information please contact the Strategic Planning Branch (Caloundra Office) via council’s customer service centre.