Newman in Caloundra South land reversal
THE State Government's insistence that a huge parcel of land next to the Bruce Hwy be included in the new Sunshine Coast plan as potential future residential development is at odds with the views expressed by Campbell Newman when he headed the South East Queensland Council of Mayors.
Deputy Premier Jeff Seeney has written to council signing off on its new planning scheme, but requiring that 1400ha south of Caloundra South be included as an investigation area for potential future urban development.
The council unsuccessfully fought the inclusion of the area, owned by Stockland, in the Bligh Government's 2009 revision of the SEQ Regional Plan.
Its position was backed by Mr Newman who was then mayor of Brisbane and chairman of the SEQ Council of Mayors.
"The mayors' submission makes it clear that we cannot support unchecked urban sprawl, and we support the concept of an urban footprint. Protecting inter-urban breaks, such as those between Sunshine Coast and Caboolture is crucial," he said at the time.
"No one wants to see a 400km long continuous urban area in south-east Queensland."
Sunshine Coast Council sought to protect the region from that outcome by restricting development on its southern fringe to the 50,000 population Caloundra South development.
Mr Seeney instead wants the 1400ha Caloundra South (Halls Creek) area to be subject to further planning ass
essment to determine whether the site is suitable for future development.
It is a position completely at odds with that supported by Mr Newman when head of the Council of Mayors.
That policy called for "an emphasis on the importance of maintaining inter-urban breaks, in particular, the policy of protecting inter-urban breaks from incompatible land uses and activities and maintaining and enhancing their functions in separating and framing major urban areas and towns, defining the character of regional communities and providing a potential source of accessible regional open space".
As head of the Council of Mayors Mr Newman expressed his disgust at the Bligh Government's decision in October 2010 to wrest planning control of Caloundra South from the Coast council. "Residents are being denied a say in the big debates about the future shape of their communities," Mr Newman said.
After securing office in 2012, the Newman Government signed off on approval of Caloundra South under the Urban Land Development Authority.
However, it has since disbanded the organisation.
Sunshine Coast Council remains locked in negotiations over a potential shortfall of $500 million in infrastructure to support the mega development.