Quick Snips November 2015<< Back to Blog
Crikey, only two newsletters to go until Christmas. What happened to 2015? Whilst it has felt like there has been plenty going on around the place, if you take the time to have a bit of a look around it all still looks pretty much like 2015. Whilst painting pictures of a bright future and prudent planning are both good things to work with, it will be nice when we start seeing a bit more activity actually starting to happen. Even though there has been improved residential building activity this year, blind Freddy can see that we really need some major employment kicking off before we can say we have a solid base for an improving economic cycle on the Coast. As each month or year passes we get closer to a new hospital, a new airport, a new CBD, a new city south of Caloundra but right now we are still just painting those pictures. Thankfully, It now looks like 2017 will be the year to finally hit the start button.
We have mentioned over recent months that the vacant beachfront land to the north of the Marcoola Resorts has been under contract. Well finally a development application has been lodged so that we can see what a new owner might intend for the site. Below is the link to the councils website for anyone that might like to see the full application but in summary the proposal is for a five storey hotel/motel comprising 115 units to be built next to the existing Salerno complex. Then as the site moves north there is a two storey 158 unit Aged Care facility and then a single level retail building. These buildings will all sit behind 39 small lot medium density residential blocks of approximately 275 m2 each that will be positioned along the beachfront boundary of the site. The far northern end of the site is proposed for a 57 site caravan park and camping area. Initial response from the surrounding communities has generally been very positive and supportive. In fact the proposal sits almost perfectly within the allowable limits of the previous planning scheme under which the application has been lodged. As we have seen with the land being developed by Seksui at Yaroomba, it does not mean that a developer cant come along at a later time and apply to modify any approval that may be given to the site. I may be a little bit of a sceptic based on our recent experiences of developers pushing approval boundaries once they get them locked in with council over the last few years but if what has been proposed actually moves to the next step and is then developed then it should be beneficial and a welcome project to complete the southern Marcoola beachfront precinct.
It has just been announced that an additional Environmental Impact Statement for the Sunshine Coast Airport project will be released for public submissions from November 2 to November 30. This will allow response to issues raised in the consultation done last year. If this seems like a long drawn out process for something that is being promoted as a key economic driver for the coast then you only need to compare it to the recently developed and privately owned Wellcamp airport that is now open and operating successfully in Toowoomba. At one third of the coast and time, the Wagner family have managed to complete their regional airport whilst we are still dragging this out in consultations. Surely there is someone, somewhere prepared to take some leadership on this project rather than letting it meander along as it is now.
Anyone that has tried the walk up Mount Coolum since the track was upgraded a few years ago knows how popular it has become. This popularity is now creating it’s own unintended issues that council is still grappling with. The issue of carparking was brought to a head recently by an over zealous parking inspector (aren’t they all). Without any regard of the public backlash, the local inspector took it upon himself to start issuing on the spot parking fines without any warning whilst people were on their way up the hill. The obvious issue was that the existing carpark was unable to meet the demands of the volume of people making use of the area. A very quick and easy solution was achieved once the complaints made it through to the local councilor alerting him to the actions of the parking inspector. A “temporary” extra area adjoining the existing carpark has been cleared for use with natural local boulders used to define the area. You would think such a logical and easy solution to an obvious problem wouldn’t be so difficult to resolve. Well now it seems almost impossible for someone to figure out how to get a public toilet in place here despite the fact that by their own estimates over 10,000 people are now visiting the track each year. The best solution identified so far is for people to hop in their car and travel to the next closest toilets in Warrack Street or at Yaroomba. It won’t be long before the signs warning against walking barefoot are added to this popular local attraction rather than someone actually fixing the problem. We are in the hands of geniuses???