Landowner Paul Hanna has written to Administrator Rik Hart imploring him to take action to assist the East Wadalba precinct landowners who are trying to develop land rezoned in 2020 for residential development of up to 1200 homes.
Council has failed to deal with eight development applications, saying there are planning issues that have not been dealt with.
The landowners disagree, saying their applications follow the directions of the Development Control Plan and the original masterplan.
Council has presented the landowners with a draft masterplan for the area which would override the masterplan put together by landowners and previously adopted by the council and the Department of Planning.
The contributions plan and water and sewer strategy were also adopted at the time.
“We strongly object to the re-master planning of the site, noting over 10 years of investigations which have informed a very recent rezoning of Wadalba,” Mr Hanna said.
“Re-visiting such a recent rezoning is highly unusual and we contend that the State Government funding provided to Council is being used inappropriately and is only
delaying and reducing housing delivery.”
Mr Hanna warned the new masterplan could be futile if current cases in the land and environment court locked in some road and lot layouts.
The draft masterplan potentially removes about 40 per cent of the developable land but some landowners lose 100 per cent of their residential yield.
Mr Hanna said the implication of this could render the development unviable, having huge implications on each developer and possibly leading to insolvency.
He said the altered masterplan has been based on high level vegetation mapping that did not align with.plant community types (PCTs) in the landowners’ Biodiversity Development Assessment Report (BDAR) which included 12 months of extensive on-site surveys and is considered to provide a far more accurate depiction of PCTs.
The BDAR prepared for the site noted that a portion of the vegetation on site was considered to be of poor quality.
“No constraints were identified during current assessments other than the ones identified for the purposes of the initial BDAR resulting in no need for further impact
reductions,” Mr Hanna said.
Council’s draft masterplan outlines a new Biodiversity Certification (BCAR) process which could take years.
Mr Hanna said the draft masterplan did not seem to take into account lot sizing or topography.
“Layouts appear to be driven by arbitrary vegetation avoidance and not providing for regular lots, drainage flow paths, or working with the slopes of the site leading
to expensive construction, poor solar access, and inefficient layouts,” he said.
Mr Hanna told Mr Hart that most of the developers were racing against the clock and simply couldn’t let the situation drag on.
“I look forward to hearing back and seeing a return to the direction we had when the rezoning and DCP was implemented,” he said.
Council Watch has approached Mr Hart for a response.
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