Council refuses to tell how much it's spent on property
SUNSHINE Coast Council has spent more than $16 million on property in the past 20 months as it attempts to get a series of big ticket schemes off the ground.
The new Sunshine Coast Airport, the Maroochydore CBD and the proposed $30 million solar farm at Valdora have all lead to the purchase of either land parcels or individual properties.
In January and February this year council paid $7.89 million for four Aerodrome Rd properties critical to its Maroochydore CBD redevelopment. However apart from restating the $43 million expended on Horton Park Golf Club two years ago, it has ignored questions from the Sunshine Coast Daily about the anticipated cost of that redevelopment and the expected return.
The CBD acquisitions and $4.33 million outlaid to secure the disused, flood-prone cane land at Valdora, consumed $12.22 million of $16.483 million paid for 14 properties in the 20 months to August this year.
Council last week refused a Sunshine Coast Daily request for full details of all its land purchases during the past two years instead pointing the Daily to RP Data, a commercial record of property transactions that may or may not tell the full story.
What is certain is that information source does not record the $2.68 million council spent on an option to buy the 49.25 ha solar farm parcel.
The actual purchase price of $1.65 million is listed. However details of the $2.68 million paid to Gruenenergy, which held an option on the land, were only revealed when council was required to lodge documents in relation to a Planning and Environment Council appeal.
A council spokesperson said the Maroochydore City Centre was the only greenfield CBD development in Australia.
"This massive project, which will be delivered over the next 20 years, will provide a mix of residential, commercial, retail and community uses to develop a thriving and vibrant business district and city centre. The master-planning process has also identified entertainment and convention facilities, community facilities and meeting spaces, parklands, walkways and an enhanced public transport network,'' the spokesperson said.
The Aerodrome Rd purchases would allow construction of a new intersection which would result in First Ave being extended across Aerodrome Rd to create a major transport access through the new city centre to service all of the Maroochydore business area. Construction is expected to start next year. The spokesperson said it was inappropriate for council to comment further on land acquisitions while commercial negotiations were in progress.
COUNCIL'S CBD PROPERTY BUY UP
- Horton Park Golf Club, 53ha, 2012: $43million
- 118 Aerodrome Rd, 2202sqm, Jan 2014, $1.4million
- 122 Aerodrome Rd, 132sqm, Jan 2014, $3million
- 128 Aerodrome Rd, 2006sqm, Feb 2014, $1.6million
130 Aerodrome Rd, 1156 sqm, Jan 2014, $1.89million