The Sunshine Coast Business Council (SCBC) wants a seat at the table when discussions and community engagement begins to facilitate the development of a new planning scheme for the Sunshine Coast region.
The Sunshine Coast Council recently announced it would start the process to develop a new scheme to cater for the region’s unprecedented growth, confirming that the plan would be launched in 2024 as part of Council’s corporate plan.
SCBC Chair Sandy Zubrinich said the Business Council welcomed the announcement and that it was imperative that all key stakeholders participate in preparing for the region’s future to ensure prosperity, sustainable growth and to deliver a planning scheme that supported the delivery of the region’s vision, strategies and plans.
“The Sunshine Coast is expected to have a population upwards of 500,000 people over the next two decades and we all acknowledge we need to plan to cater for this growth,” Ms Zubrinich said.
“With this volume of anticipated growth — which may be accelerated due to the impacts of Covid-19 and an increased migration out of the cities — this could well be our most important Planning Scheme in regards to shaping the future of our region and its communities.
“The new scheme needs to remove any ambiguous criteria for designated land use, providing clarity to the community, investors and developers alike, to avoid confusion going forward.
“A clear planning scheme ensures that the community can stand united with the clear understanding and general agreement regarding the future we all want.”
Since 2015, SCBC has been advocating for an improved contemporary planning scheme to accommodate the expected growth and the changing nature of industry, businesses and jobs.
“Our members, councils and special interest groups have been involved in think-tank sessions regarding the current planning scheme and changes required for any future scheme to protect the diversity and richness of our region whilst allowing development, growth and jobs to flourish to support our economic, social and environmental future,” Ms Zubrinich said.
“We also need to ensure the scheme includes greater detail of how we expect to achieve social and affordable housing, better manage density as well as incorporating major infrastructure and utility.
“We ran four think-tank sessions over four years and would like the opportunity to share a summary of the feedback garnered in these when the community engagement process commences for the new planning scheme.”
“We have all experienced how quickly our businesses, industries and personal lives changed due to the impacts of COVID-19. It’s really important that the community engagement is expansive so all sectors can provide valuable feedback for a robust plan.”
The 2014 planning scheme was the first plan following the de-amalgamation of Sunshine Coast and Noosa Councils.
For more information on the Sunshine Coast Business Council and membership enquiries, visit www.scbusinesscouncil.com.au.
The Sunshine Coast Business Council is the leading regional business advocacy group on the Sunshine Coast. It represents approximately 4,000 businesses through its membership, which includes key national and regional industry groups and their members as well as national and regional businesses.