A proposal for a green waste facility in West Belconnen has fallen foul of ACT planning rules but the Government says it will still be delivered.
The Government identified the site on Stockdill Drive in January last year, promising to keep the current Canberra Sand and Gravel site open until that operation could be relocated to the new one, after protests from Belconnen residents and a petition.
But the planning authority has knocked back the development application because the green waste facility was described as temporary, despite the permanent structure and road works proposed.
The notice of decision said the proposal could not be considered temporary and the DA fell over due to clashes with a range of planning rules to do with site use, predicted traffic generation and remediation issues.
Transport Canberra and City Services, which administers both roads and waste, could not support the DA.
The development was also considered inconsistent with the Bush Fire Risk Mitigation General Code, and the ACT Emergency Services Agency also could not support the DA.
The proposed facility was also inconsistent with the site’s non urban zoning (NUZ1) because it was deemed a recycling facility.
Under the Territory plan, garden waste is included in the definition of a recycling facility.
“The authority is not satisfied that the subject land is suitable for the proposed development,” the notice of decision said.
Canberra Liberals Planning and Land Management spokesperson Peter Cain, who sponsored the petition, accused the Government of backflipping on its commitment to the facility.
“It comes as no surprise that now the Labor-Greens Government has backtracked on this commitment by rejecting the DA for the temporary green waste facility.
“I’ve written to the Minister asking for clarification on why the DA was rejected, and what the Government will be doing to ensure a facility stays open in the Belconnen area.
“As far as I can see, the concerns that caused the DA to be rejected are largely to do with internal ACT Government agencies not communicating.”
Mr Cain urged the Government to find a permanent location in the Belconnen region as soon as possible.
But a government spokesperson said the ACT Planning and Land Authority made decisions on development applications independent from government.
“The Canberra Liberals are displaying an astonishing lack of understanding on how the ACT Government works,” the spokesperson said.
“The Government will still deliver the green waste facility – as promised.”
The spokesperson said the Government was working through the feedback on the development application and would continue to work through the planning system to deliver the northside facility addressing the issues that have been raised.