Jamieson defends council's maroochydore CBD development

PLANNING AHEAD: Council will take control of the Maroochydore CBD site in 2014.
PLANNING AHEAD: Council will take control of the Maroochydore CBD site in 2014. Contributed

MAYOR Mark Jamieson believes it was "a good decision" to purchase the Horton Park Golf Club to carve out a new CBD in Maroochydore.

At his inaugural state of the region address last Friday, Cr Jamieson said this future Maroochydore principal activity centre was picked up by council after the failure of private business to successfully proceed with it.

"I think council had to make a decision and bite the bullet. I believe it was a good decision, the right decision to make for the future of this whole region," Cr Jamieson said.

"We had a choice to do it (buy the CBD land) or not do it. We chose to do it.

 "The previous council chose to do it. We're on that path and sticking with it. It's too late now - the die is cast and we've got to make a really positive and constructive approach to making that the priority case."

And he believed Noosa would be able to enjoy its ratepayer investment along with the rest of the region's residents.

"It's not that far from Noosa to Maroochydore and a lot of Noosans like to come to Maroochydore for a variety of things, particularly shopping.

"When that CBD is created, and it's a 20 to 40-year project, and we have an entertainment convention centre that attracts great shows and events, it's not a long trip from Noosa down to enjoy that.

"I'm sure plenty of people will choose to do that. As a region we need to have a heart somewhere. Maroochydore is a good central location."

Cr Jamieson also took aim at Free Noosa's complaint that it was being used as a cash cow to help fund major southern development projects.

"It's easy again to look at individual items. I can choose two divisions on the Sunshine Coast - the Minyama area and the Buderim area - and say, 'well gee they pay a lot more (in rates) than other divisions'," Cr Jamieson said.

"But running a good council, and indeed the whole Australian ethos I think, is not about I give you this much money, therefore I expect that much money back."

The mayor said council's ethos was more about being a region which stuck together.

"These are all the things we've got to do and how do we fund that in a meaningful way?" he said. "And certainly it means higher rated properties pay a higher price and, yes, some of their money will go to fund other things."

Cr Jamieson said council would take control of the CBD site in July 2014 and would carry out the master planning.

This will include such infrastructure as roads, waterways and open space.

"And then it will be a question of selling that on to developers, to come in and buy those particular spots."

Cr Jamieson said the council would build a CBD that "in 20, 50, 100 years' time people will say thank goodness that the people who were in charge at that time, what a great job they did in creating an area of great pride, great attraction and a great city heart".

Topics:  maroochydore cbd, mayor jamieson



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