Blinds down by 8pm: New rules for beachfront project
Blinds will shut at a 73-unit Buddina beach development for eight months of the year, whether residents like it or not.
Automated blinds are one of several new conditions developers Diamond 88 put forward for the controversial beachfront development in an attempt to limit its impact on nesting turtles.
The developers' minor change of use application concerning five of its 74 conditions prompted a lengthy debate between Sunshine Coast councillors during a meeting on Thursday.
The development has stirred controversy among Buddina beach residents who argued it would be damaging to the nesting turtles.
The 21m, seven-storey apartment building would be constructed across six residential blocks on Iluka Ave and Talinga St.
A Planning and Environment Court appeal against the project's approval, lodged by Friends of Buddina, is ongoing.
Several motions were defeated in the council's meeting on Thursday before Cr Peter Cox moved they accept the councillor's recommendations to approve the new conditions.
The most contentious changes surrounded ways to minimise light spill.
Cr Joe Natoli failed to convince councillors they should include a condition that units should have automated balcony doors that would close after 8pm.
Cr Natoli also wanted the unit's body corporate to provide annual compliance updates to the council.
"It can't be treated like every other building like a high-rise at Mooloolaba, Alex or Maroochydore," he said.
"How do you stop human behaviour from contravening the requirements we have in terms of protecting the nesting turtles … it's almost impossible.
"That's why we have moved to automation, we take out human behaviour."
Some councillors raised concerns about changing the amended conditions, which were brought to councillors after being considered by its legal and planning departments.
Cr Cox said Cr Natoli's changes were a "step too far".
"A couple of conditions proposed this morning just make living in the apartment complex not very practical," he said.
Cr Winston Johnston proposed delaying the decision until the council's next meeting, on August 20, to allow officers to assess Cr Natoli's proposed changes.
But that was not supported, partly due to a court hearing on the development appeal set for August 21.
Cr David Law put forward a motion to delegate the decision to the acting CEO, but that was also defeated.
Under the revised conditions, the developer will also complete surveys monitoring artificial light before and after the development is built.
They are intended to ensure sky glow levels do not exceed those existing pre-development.
Mayor Mark Jamieson initially raised a perceived conflict of interest due to receiving electoral donations from Project Urban, Diamond 88's planning consultant.
Every councillor except Terry Landsberg agreed he had a perceived conflict of interest.
However, only Cr Ted Hungerford and Cr Natoli voted against Cr Jamieson being allowed to debate and vote on the matter.