DEVELOPMENT giant Stockland has defended its controversial Halls Creek development plans, saying the crucial inter-urban break between the Sunshine Coast and Caboolture will be maintained, visually at least.
Stockland general manager residential Queensland Kingsley Andrew also said the Pumicestone Passage would be looked after.
A group from Sunshine Coast Council, including Mayor Mark Jamieson, has been invited to an exclusive inspection of the Halls Creek site today as Stockland attempts to "facilitate a thorough merits-based assessment" of the 1400 hectares.
The council has indicated its preference for developing land east of Beerwah instead of Halls Creek amid substantial community concerns about the loss of the inter-urban break and the preservation of Pumicestone Passage.
Mr Andrew reiterated Stockland's support "for the preservation and retention of the existing 23-kilometre inter-urban break between North Caboolture and Caloundra South".
"Many of the vocal opponents of Halls Creek ignore the fact the site is located at least 1.7 kilometres from the Bruce Hwy," he said.
"This development will never be visible to motorists, so will not change the visual experience of driving between Brisbane and the Sunshine Coast."
He said the Halls Creek site was also at least 1.6 kilometres from Pumicestone Passage at its closest point.
A 220-hectare conservation area on the eastern side of the site would "create a buffer zone of at least three kilometres between any homes and Pumicestone Passage".
"We recognise and respect the environmental value of the passage and intend to undertake a detailed scientific approach to best practice water treatment and management at Halls Creek, should it be identified as suitable for development,'' Mr Andrew said.
He said that if the Halls Creek site was approved it could be "well into the future in 15 or even 20 or more years' time" before it was developed.
The Daily was unable to seek comment from other parties as the information from Stockland was embargoed until today.
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