Bunnings has been unable to nail a new project at Coolum.
Bunnings has been unable to nail a new project at Coolum. Bidgee/Wikimedia Commons

Judge orders Bunnings squabblers to make progress

A JUDGE will take a field trip to the site proposed for a contentious Bunnings development.

The hardware retailer's proposals at Coolum have repeatedly failed to rope in Sunshine Coast councillors.

Bunnings previously said the warehouse would create dozens of permanent jobs as well as construction jobs.

But opponents including Development Watch have said locals fervently opposed the applications.

On Tuesday, Judge William Everson said he would make a site visit to Barns Lane.

The Planning and Environment court judge said all sides must nominate "disputed issues” before the two cases continue.

Judge Everson said the cases "might be like herding cats otherwise” so he wanted an agreed document from all sides by the next court hearing.

Bunnings was ordered to nominate disputed issues by 4pm on Friday.

Sunshine Coast Regional Council was given till 4pm on Tuesday to nominate its disputed issues.

There are several other parties or co-respondents in the disputes, including Development Watch.

Those groups have until 4pm on Thursday August 16 to nominate their issues.

"I just want to know what the issues are,” Judge Everson added.

In June 2016, the regional council recommended rejecting a proposed 8600sq m warehouse and a restaurant and servo each about 300sq m at Barns Lane.

Bunnings appealed.

But that was just the beginning of long-running court action.

In October 2016, the council rejected a Bunnings bid to build a 5850sq m warehouse at the site.

Bunnings appealed again.

Court documents showed a mediation conference held on June 25 this year was unable to resolve the dispute. -NewsRegional