Coun­cil land may lure big in­dus­try

Townsville Bulletin - - NEWS - DOMANII CAMERON

TOWNSVILLE CITY Coun­cil- owned land at Wood­stock could be­come a “ma­jor in­dus­try” area af­ter the or­gan­i­sa­tion agreed to start a for­mal re­zon­ing process.

The plan­ning rec­om­men­da­tion will place a fo­cus on com­mu­nity con­sul­ta­tion as well as con­duct­ing im­pact stud­ies.

It comes af­ter the coun­cil iden­ti­fied a par­cel of land on the Lans­down hold­ing as the pre­ferred site for the pro­posed 15GWH bat­tery man­u­fac­tur­ing plant, which is backed by a con­sor­tium led by Bos­ton En­ergy and In­no­va­tion.

Mayor Jenny Hill said the site would go through a rig­or­ous assess­ment in­volv­ing com­mu­nity con­sul­ta­tion and back­ground in­ves­ti­ga­tions.

“The next step is to en­gage with the com­mu­nity and con­duct all of the nec­es­sary stud­ies on po­ten­tial im­pacts as part of the for­mal re­zon­ing process,” she said.

“While the coun­cil had the fore­sight to pur­chase the Lans­down sta­tion 15 years ago as a fu­ture land bank for new in­dus­try and eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment, we still need to make sure we en­gage with the com­mu­nity about changes in their area.

“To fa­cil­i­tate in­vest­ment and jobs in ma­jor in­dus­try like the pro­posed bat­tery plant, we need to have suit­able land avail­able and ready to go.

“We want to send a very strong mes­sage to the com­pany be­hind the bat­tery plant pro­posal and other po­ten­tial in­vestors that we mean busi­ness.

“Lans­down sta­tion has been iden­ti­fied as suit­able to fill a crit­i­cal need in Townsville for land close to trans­port links and away from the built- up area where we can lo­cate ma­jor in­dus­try.”

The land is part of the 2200ha for­mer CSIRO Lans­down re­search sta­tion, which the coun­cil ac­quired in 2002 to pro­vide for fu­ture in­dus­try.

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