Plan for affordable housing
A PLAN to provide an ownership option for residents of the Twin Lakes caravan park on Gympie’s southern outskirts would not alter the existing residential land use, Gympie Regional Council has been told.
A representative of the park owner told councillors a plan to provide the ownership option would mean real action on affordable housing, a concept which he said had received “a lot of lip service”.
However, Cr Larry Friske said he was concerned a resident complaining about established industry in the area could have existing employment-providing businesses closed down, as had happened before in the region.
Councillors at their Planning and Development Committee meeting heard submissions that the proposal could mean real benefits for many people who might not otherwise be able to afford to get into the home ownership market.
“It is for people who can’t afford a $300,00 house and it gives them the chance to get into the housing market for $130,000,” the owner’s representative said.
But, challenged by Cr Friske to give a guarantee that environmental noise complaints from the new residents would not shut down existing businesses, he said there was no way anyone could give such a guarantee.
“That industrial area all around Twin Lakes is very important to Gympie,” he said.
Cr Graham Engeman supported Cr Friske’s concerns, despite describing the proposal as “great”.
He said a proposed development near Gympie saleyards had been conditioned on acoustic fencing and double glazing to prevent a complaint shutting down the saleyards, which had been there for 30 years.
However, the representative said it was likely the housing proposal would be a “human resource for surrounding businesses”.
Many residents might work in the surrounding areas and they would not want to destroy their own jobs, he said.
Cr Donna Neilson said Twin Lakes had been there “for some time and pre-dates most of the industry which has grown up around it.
“This application is simply changing the tenure so people have their own land,” she said.