Shaping the Future Now


Many would know that Noosa’s relatively low-key blend of built and natural environment is the result of forward-thinking and disciplined town planning decisions over many decades. Some recent developments in planning, a field that shapes the look and feel of our community, are best understood in this context.

New Bunnings height reduction

A bid for a new Bunnings in Gateway Drive, Noosaville has been shaved down in height by two metres to comply with the Noosa Planning Scheme.

An application by Bunnings to build a timber and trade supplies store on a forested block next to the existing Bunnings Warehouse has had its proposed 12.125-metre building reduced to comply with the 10-metre height limit.

As said in the council’s Ordinary meeting last month, the Noosa public will already be surprised to see the heavily treed block cleared of mature vegetation and don’t need to also be confronted with an oversized building.

The meeting heard Bunnings timber and trade supplies stores in other locations were less than 12 metres in height.

Councillors were advised the existing Bunnings Warehouse next door achieved its 12-metre height after a Sunshine Coast Council refusal and court decision under an amalgamated council in 2008.

Petition backs Noosa Plan

While 96 per cent of all development applications are approved, a popular roadside café operating from a bus will have to cease trading in its current location.

Bus Stop Espresso situated in a front yard of a rural property outside Cooroy has been refused approval after generating traffic, safety, carparking and access issues on the 80km/hr stretch on Mary River Road.

A petition signed by 148 locals had also requested council address the problems caused by the business that had been operating without approval and in a non-commercial zone.

The decision was divisive as the business was very popular with many, including tourists and unpopular with others.

The roadside stall component selling locally made produce was approved to continue to trade, but the council resolved to have staff work with the owner to find a safer, more appropriate location for the bus.

The Noosa community has been consistently clear in its demand that commercial businesses don’t negatively impact on residents’ access, privacy, amenity and lifestyle, and that proper Noosa Planning Scheme requirements are met.

While roadside stalls selling produce are encouraged in rural zones under the Noosa Plan, commercial food and drink outlets are not, especially when there are carparking, traffic, access and resident amenity issues.

The regulations preventing some of us from having a morning coffee in this location on this occasion, are the ones ensuring all of us have the right to privacy, safe access and enjoyment in our homes.

That’s why it’s hoped a safer, more appropriate location for the mobile commercial venture can be found and there be an investigation into the speed limit on this section being lowered to 60km/hr.

According to a Planning and Environment Court judge’s finding, Noosa Council’s success in defending major court appeals against overscale development, including one against the investment arm of the Queensland Government on the Noosa Civic site, has been its strong record of making decisions consistently in support of its planning scheme.

SEQ planning update

The purpose of the State’s Shaping South-East Queensland (SEQ) planning review is to respond to current housing pressures and ensure the right mix of housing to meet the housing needs across the region now and into the future.

The SEQ planning committee meeting chaired by Deputy Premier Steven Miles at Parliament House on Friday heard there was a preference for infill development over expanding urban footprints in order to better protect natural assets.

Population targets for each council area are yet to be finalised. Some wanted fewer people, some wanted more. The State is looking at a more tailored response, depending on the needs of each LGA.

The state acknowledged that feedback from the councils facing population increases were strongly demanding funding for the infrastructure to cope, ahead of the growth.

All councils are supportive of more social and affordable housing. The Plan has a stated aim to ensure 20 per cent of new dwellings are in this category.

A final plan is due to be released before the end of the 2023.