Author Archives: Gerard (Redland City Council)

Have a say on future Southern Thornlands Potential Future Growth Area land uses


Redland City Council is supporting the local jobs of tomorrow by prioritising economic development in the Southern Thornlands Potential Future Growth Area, with residents now invited to have their say.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said Council had focussed on jobs creation as part of a planning investigation for the area after Council had been directed by the State Government to consider the potential future growth area.

“This land has been the subject of almost 20 years of planning and community debate, disrupted by changing directions,” she said.

“The State Government previously included part of the area in the urban footprint, which would have seen the area used for residential development.

“But this decision was then reversed, with the State Government then nominating it as a Potential Future Growth Area and directing Council to undertake planning investigations to determine the preferred future use of the area.

“Council has been firm that this area should be used for jobs, not small lot housing and so we have developed a plan to reflect this commitment.

“The proposals include areas for mixed industry and business, intensive horticulture, education, training and recreation, a transport precinct, storage and larger home-based industry enterprise activities,” she said.

Cr Williams said Council had also drawn a line in the sand by clearly stating that land not used for economic uses should only be used for larger rural living blocks (i.e., with a minimum lot size of 1 hectare) and not small lot housing.

“Given this area has seen a number of uses suggested over the years, Council wanted to make it clear that we do not support small lot housing and will only support rural living, which fits with the character of the area while also addressing homebuyer demand for this sort of rural product.”

Cr Williams said Council had also resolved to consult the whole community on the proposed use of the area at the same time the proposed plan was sent to the Minister.

“The Minister wrote to Council asking us to engage with landowners in the plan area, but Council believes this land is strategically important for the entire city and given we are focussing on job creation in the area we felt everyone should have the opportunity to have a say,” Cr Williams said.

“As such we have today opened engagement and are inviting the community to provide feedback. The views of the community will be used to inform a potential future amendment to City Plan.

“There has been a lot of debate and history to these land use recommendations, and Council wants to hear the community’s feedback on the proposed balance of future economic and residential use of the land.”

For more information about the Southern Thornlands Potential Future Growth Area, and to have your say on the draft proposals for preferred future land uses, visit the project’s page on Council’s Your Say site.

Council urges pre-schoolies visitors to behave responsibly and stay COVID-safe


Redland City Council is urging young people who may be planning to visit North Stradbroke Island (Minjerribah) for ‘pre-schoolies’ to stay vigilant and follow Queensland Health COVID-19 restrictions.

Mayor Karen Williams said Council wrote to the chair of the District Disaster Coordination Centre last month to advise of the upcoming event and seek advice regarding the expected influx of school leavers that visit the island during the September school holidays.

“While there are usually no planned events for pre-schoolies, there are generally large gatherings on the island’s beaches and in the townships, so we wrote to Queensland Health to make them aware of the event,” she said.

“The response acknowledged that while there may be increased travellers to the island, there are no formal planned events, so school leavers would need to comply with the relevant Queensland Health restrictions in place at the time.

“We welcome these young adults to Redlands Coast, but with large groups comes heightened risk of virus transmission so it is also vital that they help us prevent local outbreaks by adhering to COVID-19 restrictions.

“This includes keeping to the physical distancing rule of staying at least 1.5m away from others, the gathering rules of no more than 10 people in public and private places – excluding venues with a COVID-safe plan in place – and regularly washing and sanitising hands.”

Division 2 Councillor for North Stradbroke Island Peter Mitchell said young visitors to the island should also follow any directions given by Queensland Police.

“There are vulnerable communities living on Minjerribah, and the last thing we would want to see is an outbreak of COVID-19 there,” Cr Mitchell said.

“The rules are in place for a good reason and fines for breaches are significant.

“While Minjerribah is a beautiful location to celebrate the transition from school to adulthood, I urge all visitors to the island to help keep themselves and others safe by acting responsibly, knowing the rules, and keeping to them.”

For information about COVID-19 restrictions in Queensland, visit qld.gov.au/health/conditions/health-alerts/coronavirus-covid-19

 

Community to help set vision for Birkdale land


A vision for the future of one of the most sought after pieces of local land is a step closer after Council today adopted plans for the heritage and environmental management of the former Commonwealth land at 362 – 388 Old Cleveland Road East, Birkdale.

The decision follows the recent completion of studies and assessments Council commissioned to understand the historical and environmental value of the land, with the community to soon have a chance to have their say on how the land should be used.

Mayor Karen Williams said the decision was an exciting milestone in what had been a very long process.

“Council worked hard over many years with successive Federal Government Ministers to purchase this land for the community,” she said.

“With the studies complete and the reports in, Council will now work towards developing a vision for the land that will help frame future master planning and consideration of possible uses.

“This will include extensive community engagement, with the completed heritage and environmental studies helping to inform the vision for the property to ensure these values are protected moving forward.

“We worked for almost a decade to secure this land for the community and soon residents will be able to tell us what they would like to see on the land, with an exciting opportunity to secure a lasting legacy for future Redlands Coast generations.”

The studies completed on the land include:

  • Conservation (Heritage) Management Plan
  • Review of Indigenous Heritage Values
  • Ecological Assessment and Environmental Management Plan
  • Preliminary Engineering Assessment
  • Opportunities and Constraints Analysis (Planning Assessment)

Division 10 Councillor Paul Bishop welcomed today’s decision.

“The Redlands Coast community’s relationship with this land goes back into the mists of time,” he said.

“The site has ecological values, Indigenous cultural significance, pioneer reminders, important military history, and local farming heritage.

“The diverse range of community stories about connection to this land are many and varied. I look forward to the continuing community conversations as Council develops visions for potential end uses of the land, and the well-informed community consultation that will be part of it.

“There are also management and maintenance activities that need to commence, such as weed and pest control and fencing work.”

“These expert studies will help us co-design plans as we navigate pathways to leave a new legacy for future generations.”

More information about the land, including reports on the studies and assessments undertaken, can be found on the project’s page on Council’s Your Say site at yoursay.redland.qld.gov.au/BirkdaleLand

Council supports Covid-19 urban planning flexibility – not unintended legacies.


Redland City Council will not opt into state government Covid-19 planning regulation changes, for now, saying the Redland City Plan already aligns well with the majority of proposed changes.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said Council fully supports the need to facilitate flexible support for businesses, jobs and economic growth in response to impacts of Covid-19.

“Responses to Covid-19 need to help support business innovation, improved processes and help them to adapt and invest for long term futures.

“Good planning will facilitate this, and the Redland City Plan already aligns well the majority of changes proposed by the State.

“Where it doesn’t, it has been a deliberate decision to encourage appropriate planning uses and outcomes.

“Some of the Covid-19 planning concessions proposed by the State may well result in permanent unintended planning outcomes for the city,” Cr Karen Williams said.

“Examples include allowing specific non-industrial uses to establish in existing tenancies in industrial zones without the need for planning approval or expanding gross floor area of specific existing uses by up to 10 per cent or 100m2.

“Expanding floor areas without assessing the impacts may end up permanently reducing the number of parking spaces provided, thus affecting adjoining businesses, or impact site landscaping. 

“Proposed changes in uses allowed in an industrial zone that do not need to locate in these areas, will reduce suitable land set aside for future industry.

“Councils submission to the State will acknowledge minor and helpful changes while calling for more detail on some parts of the proposed changes.

“Council has received positive responses to date to its COVID-19 Business Support Grant and Innovation grants for Redlands Coast businesses. 

 “We will continue to work closely with business and new investors to the Redlands Coast to make sure there are no unnecessary impediments, including through city planning.

 

 

Works for Queensland Grant sought for Cleveland Aquatic Centre renewal


Cleveland Aquatic Centre will be closed until October 2020 for essential maintenance work under plans agreed by Council and centre operator Belgravia Leisure. 

A Redland City Council spokesperson said the mandated COVID-19 closure of the Aquatic Centre in March had been an opportunity for more detailed centre revitalisation and maintenance investigation.

Council has since applied for Works for Queensland grant funding to support the works identified for the Centre.

“Work had already commenced at the centre to trace and repair a suspected leak in the 50-metre pool as COVID-19 restrictions first began,” the spokesperson said.

“Council and Belgravia Leisure have since been working on planning an expanded centre maintenance, renewal, upgrade and repair program for completion by October 2020.”

The proposed operational and amenity work includes pipe repair, joint, lighting and tiling repairs, major electrical upgrades, sand filter replacement, concourse painting, timber decking, and shade sail replacement.

“Council believes this project ticks all the boxes for the Works for Queensland grant funding including the upgrading and maintenance of public pools,” the spokesperson said. 

“Cleveland Aquatic Centre supports local jobs and vital community activities ranging from recreational swimming, learn to swim, health and occupational classes, to carnivals and events.

“As well as supporting a vital community asset, Works for Queensland grant funding would go to support local jobs and local businesses.

“Grant funding announcements are expected by July 6 and Council looks forward to the project receiving State approval. 

“The closure of the Cleveland Aquatic Centre until October will understandably be frustrating for many keen users.

“But it is also probably the best opportunity to complete major revitalisation work with the least impact before the return of peak season and further easing of COVID-19 restrictions. 

“Despite COVID-19 restrictions being gradually eased, many aquatic facilities across the south-east have remained closed due to the limited viability of allowed user numbers. 

“Others have also taken the shutdown as an opportunity to work on facilities.”

 

 

Incorrect hazardous waste disposal suspected in collection truck fire


Council and waste contractor JJ’s Waste and Recycling have called for responsible hazardous waste disposal after a ‘hot load’ fire started in the metal body of a recyclable waste collection truck.

The fire in a Council contracted recycling collection truck at Thorneside last week has raised concerns about incorrect household waste disposal.

Mayor Karen Williams said Council is asking residents to ensure they don’t put dangerous contaminants or flammable material in their kerbside bins.

“Luckily last week’s fire was contained and damage to the truck, valued at nearly $500,000, was limited thanks to the quick evasive actions of the driver.

“These incidents pose a risk to our drivers, residents and firefighters as well as causing damage to the vehicle, clean-up costs, impact on collection services and potential environmental hazards.

“Investigations into the fire are continuing, but the most common cause of “hot load” fires is batteries and chemicals, and as the weather cools – hot coals from a fire.

“On average we would see one or two “hot loads” a year, however, this year alone there have already been four incidents.

“Contamination in bins is a serious matter and under no circumstances should dangerous items be placed in any Council or kerbside bins,” Cr Karen Williams said.

“Any material marked as toxic, hazardous, flammable or requiring caution should not be disposed of in kerbside bins.

“This includes flares, batteries, chemicals, gas bottles, butane cans, oil, full aerosol cans, flammable liquids or materials.

“Under no circumstances should fire embers or lit cigarette butts be placed in waste collections.

There are several ways to dispose of dangerous and flammable materials through either Council or other services.

“Council’s permanent drop off facility at the Redland Bay Recycling and Waste Centre accepts a range of hazardous items except for flares and household batteries.

Flares can be disposed of at three locations in the Redlands provided by the Queensland government, and household battery collection bins are available at Aldi stores.

If you need to dispose of a dangerous item and are unsure what to do with it, please contact Council on 3829 8999 or visit the detailed waste information pages on Council’s website www.redland.qld.gov.au/waste

 

Community Champions and STAR Community Services agreement supports vulnerable SMBI residents


Under a new agreement with STAR Community Services, the Southern Moreton Bay Islands (SMBI) volunteer Community Champions will be able to help even more of the vulnerable residents in their communities.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said that during disasters and local emergencies, the highly regarded Community Champions could now help to support the safety, wellbeing and needs of STAR clients living on the islands.

“As Chair of the Local Disaster Management Group, I am proud of the extraordinary efforts of our SMBI Community Champions in supporting island residents,” Cr Williams said.

“The agreement with STAR will enable the Champions to provide even more support, by allowing them to contact socially or physically isolated STAR clients to check on their safety,” she said.

“Essentially, it allows the Community Champions to help make sure everyone on the island has been accounted for and is being cared for in an emergency.”

STAR General Manager Patsy Wilshire said the agreement would help ensure the safety of their island clients.

“Isolated, elderly people are already vulnerable, so during a disaster we call over 600 Bay Island clients to make sure they are safe, and have access to fresh food and water as well as vital medications,” Ms Wilshire said.

“In any future disaster, if anyone on the SMBI needs immediate help, STAR will contact the Community Champions who will be able to visit the person’s home to assess their needs,” she said.

“We strongly believe that communities that work together are stronger.”

Ms Wilshire wanted to thank the Redlands Foundation for providing a phone and laptop to support communications between STAR and the Community Champions.

“Equipment like this is a basic need during emergencies, so we extend sincere thanks to Redlands Foundation for their generosity.”

Community Champions Coordinator Marie Dalton said the group’s main aim was to care for vulnerable people.

“In emergencies, the Community Champions work together to make sure everyone on the islands is safe,” Marie said.

“Working with STAR will help us identify and reach more vulnerable people more quickly,” she said.

Division 5 Councillor Mark Edwards said the agreement reflected how Redlands Coast organisations are finding ways to work together to assist the wider community.

“STAR has provided vulnerable members of our Redlands Coast community with safe, affordable and reliable services for many years,” Cr Edwards said.

“I am delighted that by working with STAR, our Community Champions will be even better resourced to support their island communities,” he said.

“We know that the very best disaster management programs involve local people, and that’s why our Community Champions have been so successful.

“This agreement will strengthen our SMBIs’ resilience and is a great example of the power of the Redlands Coast community working together.

“If you would like further information regarding the work carried out by STAR Community Services, please call 3821 6699 or the Southern Moreton Bay Island Community Champions on 0423 162 723.

Mayor welcomes State Government funding changes


After years of lobbying, the State Government has today agreed to extend the successful Works for Queensland grants program as a one off to the Redlands and other South East Queensland councils.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams welcomed the news, which comes on the back of continual advocacy to the State Government.

“Today’s announcement is exciting and opens the door for increased State Government funding for Redlands Coast in recognition of our regional and remote challenges,” Cr Williams said.

“I know the Redlands has unique challenges, including islands with twice the State average of unemployment and ageing communities, in addition to connectivity challenges due to their remoteness.

“These challenges are why I have been lobbying consistently for additional State Government funding to provide our community with the same funding opportunities as regional areas with lower unemployment.

“This announcement also follows a resolution I put to last year’s Local Government Association of Queensland (LGAQ) conference asking the State Government to develop a similar grant allocation for South East Queensland.

“This one off funding is being made available to help Councils recover from the COVID pandemic, which is very welcome and I thank the State Government for this commitment.”

Cr Williams said she had met with and written to the Minister requesting this funding and also recently joined with State Member for the Redlands Kim Richards on a petition to State parliament calling for the funding.

“Finally the unique challenges of our community are receiving the recognition they deserve and on behalf of the community I thank the Premier, Minister and Ms Richards.

“This funding is the beginning of the journey and I will continue to speak with all levels of government to ensure our local challenges are recognised through long term and consistent funding,” Cr Williams said.

Council’s COVID-19 assistance package progressing and new measures to be investigated


Redland City Council has noted the progress of its Stage1 COVID-19 Social and Economic Assistance Package and endorsed investigation of new, Stage 2 initiatives.

Mayor Karen Williams said that of the 11 items endorsed on 26 March 2020 as part of a more than $2 million assistance package, five were already complete and the other six were in progress.

“I’m pleased that Council has moved swiftly to play its part to relieve some of the pressure the COVID-19 pandemic has caused for Redland Coast residents and businesses,” Cr Williams said.

“This early progress paves the way for Council to now look at new options to provide further stimulus and support.

“Council has doubled the time for current rates payments and continues to work compassionately with those requesting financial relief,” she said.

“Community groups have been advised of available grants up to $10,000 to provide hardship relief to residents and one-off Council contributions made to waive electricity network charges for clubs and associations adversely impacted by COVID-19.

“Business owners may apply for grants up to $1000 to access professional business advice and up to $5000 to re-engineer their business operations to remain viable.

“Already we’ve received 26 applications for these grants, across all categories. Application information is available on Council’s website.”

Cr Williams said Council was also giving preference to local suppliers, with a 10 per cent advantage to be applied, while Council’s own local spend increased by approximately four per cent in the past quarter and 97 per cent of invoices paid within 14 days.

“In addition to providing increased flexibility in many of Council regulatory requirements, a substantial area of support has been delivered through advice to community and businesses,” she said.

“Council’s support officers have helped local businesses, social enterprises, community groups and sporting clubs access Federal and State government economic stimulus packages.

“Council support services have effectively triaged business and organisation information needs by helping point to relevant support with forty percent of business inquiries seeking information on government stimulus support.

Twenty one percent of business inquiries to date have been accommodation and food services businesses and eighteen percent from manufacturing.

“This support information is also being offered through regular e-newsletters to more than 1400 business recipients and updates on Council’s COVID-19 Business and Community page.

“Approximately 400 tourism and event businesses have also received six industry specific e-newsletter updates while our officers have individually contacted more than 80 event organisers.

“Council is committed to working closely with industry representatives and government agencies to ensure tourism and events operators receive the help they need.”

Cr Williams said opportunities to bring forward State Government investment in major infrastructure projects was also being identified, including through programs administered by the Department of Transport and Main Roads.

“While it is impossible to completely remove the burden this pandemic is having on Redlands Coast, Council remains committed to doing what it can to continue supporting our local people, community organisations and businesses.”

Macleay Island industrial land development opportunity open for EOI


A formal Expression of Interest (EOI) process has opened to test the market for low impact industry development opportunities on Macleay Island land currently owned by Redland City Council.

The EOI, opened on 11 March, is inviting written submissions by 8 May 2020 from developers interested in the overall development (including purchase or lease) of approximately 6500m2 of land at 20-24 Kate Street, Macleay Island.

Zoned in the Redland City Plan 2018 for Low Impact Industrial uses, the rare land use opportunity allows potential developers to present their proposals for the development and tenure of the developable part of the land.

Currently used by Council as a works stockpile site, the available land has been identified as surplus to operational needs and is considered the most suitable island location for low impact industry offering both good access and appropriate buffers from other island properties.

The Council initiated land development opportunity is designed to supply functional industrial land for Macleay Island and support the development of economic activity and new local business opportunities.

With 2,679 residents and 1,724 properties at the 2016 census, Macleay Island is the second-largest of the four Southern Moreton Bay Islands (SMBI).

Like its neighbours, the island has experienced strong population growth in recent years with some of Australia’s best value coastal land located near to the major population centre of South East Queensland.

The long-term calls for more opportunity to develop light industry options for the island’s economy has helped drive Council’s decision to offer the site for low impact industry use.

In evaluating EOI submissions, Council will consider the perceived benefits the development proposals will offer in terms of the ability to meet the short term industrial needs of the Island and financial viability to Council.

The EOI evaluation process may also shortlist preferred development partner applications for future submission of Tenders under the provisions s228 of the Local Government Regulation 2012.

Council has appointed Ray White Commercial Bayside to manage the Expression of Interest on behalf of Council.

EOI documentation is available by contacting the agency on 07 3245 7199 or email to baysidecommercial.qld@raywhite.com.

Project background information is also located on the Your Say Redlands Coast website.