Friday, May 13, 2011

Gordonvale Woolworths

There is a surprisingly illuminating discussion going on at the  Journal of Ignorance on the rejection by Council of a Woolworths development application at Gordonvale. Cr Paul Gregory has, to his credit, weighed in a few times and there are a few points to note.

 “We’re faced with the classic dilemma of current community wants and needs, and the wants and needs of the community in 40 or 50 years,” division councillor Paul Gregory said

Is that really what we are faced with? Is Paul suggesting that Woolies are building a half century ahead of when they should? How is Paul, or Council, in any position to make that judgement?

"The refusal was for that application on that site, considered by Council and State planners to be too big and premature."  says Paul in comments. State planners have said that?

"There is already a site allocated for Local Shopping on that side of the highway, which could have easily been utilised. That site was allocated via a legal process from a previous application that was approved by Council, appealed against and overturned by the Courts, which proves that such approvals cannot be given without the full scrutiny of planning aspects and law included."

That's a quite opaque description and makes me wonder who is the owner of the approved site to receive a Woolies valuation windfall via planning legislation? Paul is a long term Councillor, probably one of the better ones especially with his committee contribution, and someone deserving of respect. However, there are some issues lurking in here!

Curiously, comments on this thread are reservedly absent any mysoginist val-hate for the rejection of a development. I would have thought this had more credit than the previously approved Capital Globe and RSL developments, outside planning guidelines, to say nothing of the Freebody waterpark?

Update: Paul Gregory has confirmed that the owner of his preferred zoned site as described above is/was CEC. Which is interesting ......

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