Go-ahead for Wonga
CAIRNS Regional Council has approved the reconfiguration of one Wonga Beach property into 99 lots by the applicant called Wonga Beach Aquaculture Resort.
The property belongs to developer McCloy Group, owned by the incumbent Lord Mayor of Newcastle, Jeff McCloy, whose luxury yacht Seafaris burnt and sank off the coast near Cow Bay last month.
Reconfiguring the 39 hectares between Vixies Road and Snapper Island Drive has been approved on the basis that there was already preliminary approval in 2011 to develop the land, despite it being within the Rural Planning Area under the Douglas Shire Planning Scheme.
The FNQRP does not ordinarily permit the subdivision for residential purposes, but in this case preliminary approval preceded the introduction of the FNQRP and so is considered an ‘‘exisitng Development Commitment’’.
The proposal includes the creation of open space and drainage areas.
The subdivision is proposed to be undertaken in stages from south to north.
The application was approved with six conditions, including that the applicant must provide a modified filling and drainage plan to establish a level high enough to protect the lots from storm surge and flooding, a minimum buffer width between the development and mapped Great Barrier Reef High Ecological Significance Wetlands boundary, and there must be a stormwater, erosion and sediment control strategy for approval prior to any operational work.
Another condition of the approval is the applicant further investigates the capacity of the existing reticulated water system that the Wonga catchment supports.
The council officers’ report stated if studies were to ascertain a shortfall in capacity it would be the obligation of the developer to augment supply to the extent necessary.
The applicant will enter an Infrastructure Agreement with council to agree on scope and costs of all works, which will not happen until the new Douglas Shire Council comes into power at the beginning of next year.
The transfer panel for Douglas has been briefed on the matter.