Where is the Toolooa Priority Development Area?
The Priority Development Area is situated approximately six kilometres south of the Gladstone CBD in the suburb of Toolooa. It is bounded by Gladstone-Benaraby Road, Philip Street, Glen Eden Drive and Glenlyon Road. The PDA is approximately 180 hectares in size. Comprising only state owned land, the PDA adjoins the current communities of Toolooa and Glen Eden but does not encompass any of the existing residences within its boundary.
Why was the Toolooa site declared as a PDA?
At the time of declaration, the Queensland Government estimated that between 2006-2031, the Gladstone Region would require 21,000 additional dwellings to accommodate expected regional growth.
The Toolooa PDA will play a role in accommodating some of this growth by providing a range of housing options to cater for diverse groups of people, including homes for key workers such as nurses, teachers, emergency personnel and first home buyers.
What is the vision for Toolooa?
The PDA will be a vibrant community that blends new, well designed neighbourhoods with the existing residential areas of Toolooa and Glen Eden. Any impacts on existing areas have been well considered, designed for and managed. A range of new, affordable homes will be provided in bushland settings.
A diverse and affordable range of new housing choices will be offered in Toolooa. Options will be provided with diversity of types, designs, price points, live/work opportunities and tenures offered.
Development will respond to and protect sensitive areas such as endangered regional ecosystems, flood prone land and steep slopes, through appropriate construction styles, setbacks, buffering and where appropriate improved connectivity. Many of the new homes provided in Toolooa will have access to views and breezes while being close to neighbourhood parks and bushland recreation areas.
Bushland and open space
Approximately 85 hectares of bushland within the PDA will be preserved. This bushland will provide a natural setting for the proposed new neighbourhoods while contributing to Council's long term vision for a 'green' corridor along Glenlyon Road. Environmentally sensitive areas will be included as part of open space areas and green corridors in a way that creates amenity for development.
What is the Toolooa PDA Development Scheme?
The development scheme is the planning document that will assist in planning, carrying out, promoting, coordinating and controlling the development of land in the Toolooa PDA. The development scheme sets out the land uses, development criteria and infrastructure envisaged for the Toolooa PDA and supersedes the Interim Land Use Plan which no longer has effect now that the development scheme has been adopted.
All development applications within the PDA are assessed against the development scheme.
Did the community have an opportunity to comment on the Toolooa PDA Development Scheme?
Yes. The Toolooa PDA Development Scheme was on public notification for a minimum of 30 business days. The public notification period commenced on 29 June 2012 and concluded on 13 August 2012.
During this period all interested parties including the community, residents, local business operators and the local council were able to view the proposed development scheme and make a written submission for consideration by the state government.
How does Native Title affect the planning and development of the Toolooa PDA?
Where Native Title has effect within the PDA, the state government will negotiate with the relevant party to come to an agreement regarding the area. Planning for the area can continue as this negotiation occurs, however, development within the area will only commence if Native Title is extinguished on the site in accordance with the Commonwealth Native Title Act 1993.
Can Economic Development Queensland (EDQ) compulsorily acquire property?
No, EDQ does not have compulsory land acquisition powers.
Will development in the Toolooa PDA be at risk of flooding?
The Queensland Reconstruction Authority's interim flood maps indicate that the PDA was not impacted by the 2010 and 2011 flood event. The state government undertook detailed hydrologic investigations of the PDA and areas affected by flooding have been incorporated into the Open space zone and will not be developed for residential purposes.
How will ecologically significant areas be protected?
Significant environmental values have been identified, retained and enhanced where appropriate within the proposed development scheme. A number of site specific investigations in addition to consultation with council and local stakeholders have identified approximately 85 hectares of bushland within the PDA to be preserved and protected. This bushland will provide a natural setting for the proposed new neighbourhoods while contributing to Council's long term vision for a 'green' corridor along Glenlyon Road.
Ecologically significant areas will be protected through a number of different planning mechanisms. The development scheme will outline the zoning provisions within the PDA and tables of assessment will nominate the types of development that are appropriate in each zone. The vision in the development scheme will also provide guidance as to what is envisaged for the PDA.
Development applications will be required to address the state government's Environmental Values and Sustainable Resource Use Guideline which includes provisions to protect significant natural values present within the site.
What will happen when a development application is lodged with the state government?
When lodging a development application to the state government, the application will be assessed against the purposes of the Economic Development Act 2012 and the relevant planning document in force or as prepared when the application is decided. On 26 April 2013 the Toolooa PDA Development Scheme was approved by the state government.
The development scheme is the planning document that will assist in planning, carrying out, promoting, coordinating and controlling the development of land in the Toolooa PDA. The development scheme supersedes the Interim Land Use Plan which no longer has effect now that the development scheme has been adopted.
All development applications within the PDA are now assessed against the development scheme.
How does the state government development assessment process differ from the Gladstone Regional Council?
Development applications over land outside a PDA are made to and assessed by the local government authority under the Sustainable Planning Act 2009 (SPA) and the planning scheme.
Development applications over land within a PDA are instead made to and assessed by the state government under the Economic Development Act 2012. Under this Act, the assessment process generally occurs within 40 business days. This timeframe does not include circumstances where there is a need for additional information or public notice of the application.
What happens to a building application that has already been lodged with a private building certifier?
Economic Development Queensland is not responsible for assessing building work against the Building Act 1975. These applications will continue to be assessed under SPA, which provides for private building certification.