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Property group returns with new development application for Twin Waters West

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Property development group Stockland has lodged a development application with Sunshine Coast Council to seek approval for a new master-planned residential community at Twin Waters West.

The application proposes a low-density residential community on the largely cleared site between the Sunshine Motorway and the existing Twin Waters community.

An aerial photograph of the subject site from the development application report.

Stockland senior economic development manager Matthew Byrne said the location, which is zoned for future residential use, could provide much-needed new land and housing supply on the highly sought-after north shore.

“As this is one of the last remaining large broadacre sites located in the heart of the Sunshine Coast, there is great potential to deliver an exemplar sustainable and classic Sunshine Coast lifestyle offer,” Mr Byrne said.

He said the new masterplan, updated from an earlier proposal, was focused on delivering a highly connected, active and healthy lifestyle, with extensive pathways and cycleways across the site.

In a press release, Stockland said the new master plan complied with the council’s planning requirements to reflect the low residential character of Twin Waters, while providing extensive rehabilitation and conservation of the remnant vegetation and environmental values.

“We look forward to introducing our proposal to the Sunshine Coast community and receiving feedback over the months ahead,” Mr Byrne said.

The site for the proposed development.

Twin Waters West has been a contentious issue since an initial proposal to develop the site in 2008.

The project has been rejected twice by Sunshine Coast Council and faces stiff community opposition.

The first proposal was first knocked back in 2009. That rejection was appealed in court, resulting in a legal fight Stockland lost in 2013.

The developer lodged a second development application with the council in December 2018 but that was knocked back in July 2020.

Stockland then lodged an appeal that triggered a four-week hearing in the Planning and Environment Court, which wrapped up last August.

Judge William Everson dismissed Stockland’s appeal, noting concerns over the potential development’s ecological impact, particularly on the site’s central wetland, and inconsistencies with the character of the adjoining Twin Waters community.

The council’s position was supported in court by a number of groups as co-respondants, including Twin Waters West and Surrounds, Sunshine Coast Environment Council, Development Watch, Organisation of Sunshine Coast Association of Residents and other community groups.

An artist’s impression of the development’s proposed forest, which Stockland says would feature lawns, garden pavilions, seating areas, a level access boardwalk and lookout pods to enjoy the surrounding natural beauty and kangaroo reserve.

The new development application report, prepared by Project Urban, says the application “responds to the findings of the 2022 Planning and Environment Court decision about the previous proposal over the land and achieves compliance, which in many instances involves development outcomes exceeding minimum standards”.

“Compliance is achieved in part through: the establishment of a 50m buffer to the central wetland, exceeding the acceptable outcome for 30m; moving the lake further away from the central wetland; and nominating a minimum lot size of 500sqm and average lot size of at least 700sqm, in accordance with the Local Plan requirement,” it says.

About 27.5 hectares (26.2 per cent of the site) is for ecological conservation.

A 20m wide landscape and acoustic buffer to the Sunshine Motorway is proposed.

The report says the development will achieve “in the order of 450 housing lots and will assist in delivering much-needed additional housing stock for the Sunshine Coast”.

An impression of the walkable waterfront around the proposed lake, which Stockland says will use a pump to draw saline water from the existing Twin Waters Lake and achieve a 30-day lake flushing criteria.

Do you have an opinion to share? Submit a Letter to the Editor at Sunshine Coast News via news@sunshinecoastnews.com.auYou must include your name and suburb.

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