Redlands2030 and members of the Toondah Action Group gathered 1,163 signatures calling for Redland City Council to withdraw support for the Toondah Harbour development.
The petition was tabled before Council on 22 November by Cr Murray Elliot who received the specially wrapped petition from Steve MacDonald, President of Redlands2030.
Council agreed to accept the petition and have a report presented at a future meeting.
Steve MacDonald, President of Redlands2030 said collecting the petition signatures was a community effort involving dozens of people.
Presenting the petition
The full text of the presentation to Redland City Council reads:
Madam Mayor and councillors
My name is Steve MacDonald.
I live in Cleveland and I am the President of the community group Redlands2030.
I am here to have tabled a petition signed by over 1,136 people, mostly Redlands residents but including a healthy number of visitors and tourists.
This petition calls on the Council to withdraw its support for the Toondah Harbour PDA development, and to work with the State Government to develop a new plan that is focused on upgrading the ferry terminal and associated car parking.
This petition was opened at our last Toondah Rally and on that day alone 426 signatures were collected.
Our long-standing Toondah concerns have centred on poor planning and inadequate community consultation.
Our concern is that Council and the State Government have shown the community nothing to justify the 450% growth in apartments over that previously announced. The unit numbers mysteriously grew from 800 to 3,600, with no explanation and no justification.
The latest planning process ignored previous Toondah schemes, community responses and the promise of a previous State government that Toondah dredging for coastal real estate development will never happen.
Toondah PDA planning never properly addressed policy and legislative commitments to the international Ramsar agreement, migratory bird treaties, the Moreton Bay Marine Park or even the SEQ Regional Plan.
The planning does not address the impacts of a new retail centre on the Cleveland CBD or how a mega residential development with inadequate parking facilities would actually improve access to Straddie.
The much touted extra jobs won’t mitigate the estimated 4500 more commuters leaving Cleveland every day to work elsewhere. If they use the train QR will need an extra 5 trains every peak hour?
Missing from the planning analysis is the impact on schools (two new schools are needed), hospitals and other services. Redlands road traffic congestion has not been fixed, despite many election promises over the years.
The infrastructure agreement shows the public benefits will be minimal under the scheme now before the Commonwealth and it makes no allowance for the subsidy built in by capped infrastructure charges.
The PDA Scheme ignored the Redlands Planning Scheme and the Redlands2030 Community Plan. At the first consultation the responsible planners admitted they had no knowledge of the Community Plan or the Community Values at the start of the PDA consultation.
We have heard many politicians say that “the science should be tested”.
This is nonsense.
Questions of planning merit should be resolved before an Environmental Impact Assessment is undertaken. Environmental assessment should only consider the impacts of a properly considered development.
When the EPBC Referral was replaced with a new proposal it seems council didn’t consider the changes and made no submission. Surely there were matters of public interest that Council were concerned about such as reduced parkland.
The decision of the State Government to terminate the Gold Coast Integrated Resort Development set aside a project much more advanced than Toondah. The commitment to start a master planning process with community participation sets a good precedent. Redlanders should be given similar treatment.
We suggest Council should reflect on the recent measures of public support for the Toondah scheme.
The local paper has a poll showing 85% of readers want the Toondah PDA scheme stopped.
Submissions to the EPBC referral ran 1,400 against and only 8 in favour.
This petition itself, collected by dozens of anxious residents has over 1,100 signatures.
There are others!
These numbers show concern at a level greater than the recent petitions to extend the (eastern) busway, and the stranding of Straddie.
The available evidence shows the community is opposed to the Toondah scheme.
Clearly the proposed development does not have a social licence to go ahead.
Madam Mayor I would like to ask Cr Elliot to accept this petition and ask that he be allowed to table the petition before the Council.
We look forward to hearing what our councilors have to say about a project which the community considers to be clearly unacceptable. We would like the resolution debated in the Chambers so we can hear the views of all Councillors!
We and your petitioners look forward to council’s response.
Put simply, it’s time to stop the rort and just fix the port.
The petition says “withdraw support for Toondah”
The petition, signed by 1,163 people, says:
We, the undersigned Residents of Redland City request that Council:
- Withdraw its support for Walker Group’s proposed Toondah Harbour residential development which the community considers to be clearly unacceptable
- Work with the State Government on a new plan to upgrade the ferry terminals and associated car parking areas at both Cleveland and Dunwich which:
- Avoids dredging or other environmental harm in the Moreton Bay Marine Park and Ramsar Site
- Protects the local koalas from any loss of habitat and major increase in traffic
- Ensures any development near Toondah Harbour is consistent with the Redland City Plan