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Developers still threaten Fig and Cyclists/Walkers on Smyth Ck Bikeway

The latest Developers at #160 Macquarie Street, Conmus Enterprises Pty, have put in Submissions on the BCC website that show they plan excavations (4 carpark levels deep, plus foundations for a block that remains enormous, relative to anything else in this end of Macquarie Street, and relative to the very small site). The previous Developer application was refused by the BCC on the stated grounds that these excavations, along with other works at the back of the site very close to the protected Fig tree, were considered to threaten the tree’s survival (its roots reach through the site, while low-hanging large branches of its trunk stretch across the site). The proposed excavation will create a huge hole, effectively requiring removal of almost all the earth, tree roots and rocks on the site. The Conmus Submission proposes no changes to the refused application, that explain how the protected Fig could survive.

The Fig tree is also important to the stabilisation of the River bank; the land at #160 sits on the edge of Smyth Creek—through which huge volumes of water came in the last flood, covering Schonell Drive and up into UQ. The current single house at #160 has been unfit for habitation since that flood.

The Code Assessable categorisation of the original proposed Development at the site at #160 is totally out of date for current traffic conditions In Macquarie/Carr/Keith Streets which form an enclosed square with Schonell Drive. There are now three childcare centres accessed via Keith Street. Macquarie Street is a section of the Indooroopilly-Taringa-St Lucia-City Bikeway—that, the BCC congratulates itself, carried a million cycle journeys last year. The Development at #160 is proposed to have parking for 82 cars producing a large volume of vehicle traffic (along with all the extra #160 required, public and private, service vehicles for the block). All these vehicles will enter and leave by crossing the path of the Bikeway, since Macquarie St is a cul-de-sac on each side of the Bikeway/pedestrian bridge over the Creek. It is hard to see how serious accidents to cyclists could be avoided with a development that generates so much extra traffic in a confined space.

Last Saturday I raised these concerns (currently shared by 1083 residents and users of Macquarie and surrounding Streets who have signed the change.org petition) with Councillor Julian Simmonds, until recently Chair of the City Planning Committee of the BCC. He assured me that he would investigate the latest Developers’ Submission, and not permit the Fig tree to be destroyed.

Carole Ferrier
Brisbane, Australia
Latest #160 Macquarie Street
Nov 12, 2018 —

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