A Better Plan For Toondah Harbour

Toondah Harbour Urban Design Workshop

Toondah Harbour Urban Design Workshop

Some of Queensland’s most experienced architects, planners and landscape architects were so horrified by the Redland City Council’s draft scheme for Toondah Harbour’s redevelopment that they gave their time free of charge to workshop a better plan for the Cleveland community.

Workshop spokesman Shane Thompson was quoted in the Bayside Bulletin as saying:

This dreadful and grandiose PDA scheme is something of the type we would normally only expect of some lunatic despotic government in the Third World.

After two days of examining the site and considering options for improvement they presented their findings on 1st March to a gathering of community members and some of Redland City’s more progressive Councillors.

Alternate Plan for Toondah Click to Enlarge

Alternate Plan for Toondah Click to Enlarge

Workshop participants identified a range of alternative plans for development around the Toondah Harbour precinct that would achieve a better fit with Cleveland and North Stradbroke Island’s requirements.

A key point from the workshop’s findings is that any development at Toondah Harbour should connect with other key parts of the Cleveland area including the CBD, Raby Bay and the historical precinct around the Grand View Hotel and Shore Street North . The scale of commercial and retail development envisaged by the Toondah PDA scheme was considered to be a huge threat to survival of the existing Cleveland CBD.

Shane Thompson was reported by the Bayside Bulletin as saying that the workshop group found the current Toondah scheme too large, unfeasible and risky. He went on to say that bite-sized development projects would enable smaller developers to secure finance and local builders to tender – keeping jobs and profits in the Redlands.

The Final Report for the workshop notes that:

General public expectation in the Redlands is for low or medium-rise, medium-density development in keeping with the sub-tropical country town character and way of life. This majority community expectation is on the public record, whereas purported community backing for the high-rise high density PDA proposal is nowhere presented.

It is clear that these public expectations are consistent with the values espoused in the highly regarded Redlands Community Plan 2030, which should have been the starting point for any planning for Toondah Harbour’s redevelopment.

The workshop’s Final Report also makes the point that:

The PDA scheme has been poorly envisaged and planned; it is not a work of considered research, at any level. It is difficult to find anything positive to say concerning its quality and professional competence.

For more information about the Uurban Design Workshop and its findings go to:

Toondah Harbour PDA Urban Design Workshop Final Report

Interview with workshop spokesman Shane Thompson

Bayside Bulletin articles published on 3 March 2014 and 17 March 2014

Please note: Offensive or off-topic comments will be deleted. If offended by any published comment please email thereporter@redlands2030.net

One thought on “A Better Plan For Toondah Harbour

  1. The Council is still obstinately committed to ramming through a technically implausible and practically unfeasible plan without regard to common sense, environmental impact or community values. It is clear from the progress of the PDA/S that Council, with State Government support, had “the answer” and have not been swayed. Pity the plan is a dud from 5 years ago that could not get up then and won’t get up now. Council have ignored their own consultant’s concerns (gee, where did that $600,000 go ?) and produced a thought bubble plan without technical or economic rationale. Sadly, when this all falls in a hole the ratepayers will be left to foot the ongoing bills, and live with the legacy of another planning disaster created by the pumped up egos of third rate politicians trying to curry favorable media. The PDA/S process has been an amateurish sham – planning without doing the homework is high risk, and dictating a plan without community support will always end in tears.

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