- Saturday 20 October 2012
At council’s Ordinary Meeting Sunshine Coast Council approved an application for a home based quad bike tour business at Tablelands Rd, Cooran.
Economic Development - Tourism, Sport and Major Events Portfolio Councillor, Jason OPray said development approval means the private residence can be used as a base for the operation of a quad bike business.
"They will be able to store 12 quad bikes and can use their property as an induction area for tourists who will be given instructions on how to safely operate quad bikes.
"The application was for the private residential component of the overall business plan and does not include the National Park.
"The Department of Environment and Heritage Protection has already issued the business with a Commercial Activity Permit for tours through the National Park.
"And Queensland Police has issued a conditional permit for the use of Tablelands Road and associated tracks within the park.
Councillor OPray said the development application has received a great deal of support from the surrounding community, particularly neighbours directly adjoining the property. It’s important to remember that the majority of locals support sustainable tourism in the hinterland.
"Council also considered submissions from people opposed to the application. I understand that some people are worried about the noise of the bikes and the potential impact on native wildlife and habitat," he said.
"An independent consultant assessed the applicant’s acoustic report and determined that noise will not be an unreasonable nuisance for residents.
"Council has placed conditions on the operation of the business to limit noise impacts. Tours will be limited to two tours a day, Monday to Saturday and no tours on Sunday or public holidays."
Councillor OPray said the proposed development aligns with council’s goal of creating a more robust economy.
"Building a mature, diversified economy means enabling growth in sectors like the tourism industry," he said.
"The addition of a diverse range of activities that appeal to different visitor groups is essential for a sustainable economy, particularly in hinterland areas rich in natural appeal.
"People interact with the natural environment in different ways and giving visitors more options will generate greater interest in the Sunshine Coast hinterland.
"Council supports economic growth and job creation for locals and that means supporting local home based business too."
Council received 24 properly made submissions of which 13 supported and 11 objected to the application. A total of 709 not properly made submissions were received of which 585 supported and 124 objected to the application. One not properly made petition was also submitted to council with 155 objections to the application.