Vigorous debate over estate

SOME serious "horse trading" between Sunshine Coast Council and the developer has seen councillors green light a new housing estate near Peregian Springs for 397 lots to house around 1000 people.

Applicant Pam Cox had sought a negotiated settlement for a previous 2009 council approval on the grounds that "many of the (approved) conditions were unreasonable" and should be modified or deleted.

The site is mid-way between Murdering Creek Rd and Emu Mountain Rd which connects the Sunshine Motorway to the David Low Way at Peregian Springs, to also allow for a local centre and a child care centre plus open space.

Council will no longer require the developer to build a general store before the release of the final 25% of residential allotments, but has required land be set aside to allow for a shop in the future.

Given that Peregian Springs shopping centre is within 1.8km driving distance of the estate, staff believed there will be no major problems for new residents, even though the "establishment of a local centre would be desirable to create a sense of place for the community".

"The conditions of most concern to the applicant relate to external road and footpath connections, infrastructure contributions and requirements to delete lots to accommodate additional open space," a staff report stated.

Staff believe most were considered to have "reasonable grounds for modifying, but some are recommended to remain unchanged".

"While not required as a prerequisite to the development, the eventual establishment of a local centre remains likely," the staff report stated.

Sunshine Coast councillors decided to insist on fees and contributions for road upgrades, water supply and sewerage infrastructure, provision of bikeways and bicycle facilities, stormwater quality and public parks infrastructure.

New upgrade conditions were added including a section along Old Emu Mountain Rd must be upgraded along the frontage of the site before the first stage proceeds.

Council's 2009 approval required the applicant to upgrade Old Emu Mountain Rd to an "urban district collector street" from the end of the sealed road adjacent to the Peregian Beach College north-west of the subject site to the intersection of Old Emu Mountain Rd with Emu Mountain Rd south of the subject site.

Councillors Russell Green, Tony Wellington and Jenny McKay voted against the recommendation.

Cr Green expressed a desire to have the matter deferred to facilitate further council discussions with the applicant about achieving some of the previous council's desired outcomes.

Cr Green said the challenge for councillors the last time this development came before council was that the estate was "locked by roads at either way (north and south)".

"The reason both (former) Councillor Vivien Griffin and myself fought hard to get these (approval) additions was to buy the paper and buy some milk, the only way you could do it was by getting in your car and driving to Peregian Springs or Peregian.

"We wanted a development so you could either move by pathways, cycleways," he said.

"There's 400 dwellings going in there - you suddenly don't want 400 cars all driving into Peregian Beach at 6am to buy bread."

Cr Green said the previous council had sought "add ons" on top of what the old Maroochy planning scheme required.

"Because of that we haven't been able to defend it which is disappointing."

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