Locals claim new development will put lives at risk
APPROVAL of a Rainbow Bay apartment development may deliver anything but a pot of gold for the local area according to residents.
Developers of the site, on the corner of Marine Parade and Petrie Terrace, have lodged an application for a 13 storey complex which has locals fearful it could create a major traffic hazard if approved.
According to Friends of Rainbow Bay spokeswoman Leanne McGuiness, the site as frontage to both streets but what is of major concern is the application to have street access to Marine Parade which would not only remove two carparking spaces but would also put an crossover in a very dangerous location.
"The Flow development already has a 40m frontage to Petrie Terrace which would be more suitable for access to the site but the application also seeks to have access from a 20m frontage on Marine Parade," Ms McGuiness said.
"Everyone who knows the site also knows that Marine Parade which continues up to Point Danger is a very busy road and traffic coming down the hill into Rainbow Bay comes around a corner and straight onto the intersection with Petrie Terrace.
"That location has already been the site of fatal accident involving a cyclist and a motorist early one morning a couple of years ago - we fear this development would add to the risk factor.
"It doesn't make any sense to allow more access onto that road."
Ms McGuiness said her organisation had raised concerns that the application was considered 'code assessable' when it failed to meet so many benchmarks in the City Plan.
"The Gold Coast City Council's attitude is that ' hey don't need to look at it' because it comes under that rule - if that is the case - why does it?" she said.
She said other aspects of the development which were of concern included site cover, residential density and corner truncation.
Rainbow Bay local James Beck, who leaves immediately adjacent to the development site, said the traffic issue was a real problem.
"It the time that we have lived here, I have seen several accidents and countless near misses on the road and not just with vehicles," Mr Beck said.
"There are plenty of cyclists, skateboarders and rollerbladers who come down the hill at a fair speed and now, we have a developer who wants to put an entrance onto this road - it is a real safety risk.
"You have a location where you have a connecting road - Petrie Terrace coming out onto a main road and directly opposite you have dual access to Apex Park.
"To think Gold Coast City Council would forego two parking spaces when they are at a premium during weekends and the holidays is baffling.
"On top of that, there is a safety light where the developers want to have the entrance which would have to be repositioned.
"It that goes, it creates a dark space so the it becomes a personal safety issue."
The Flow site is in front of the Carool apartment complex which was built in 1982.
Carool manager Phil Roddy said aside from the traffic issues, the proposal failed to take in the amenity of the area with plans showing that the rear of the Flow tower would be painted black and have all services and airconditioning units exposed to his building.
"We mainly do holiday letting here and Carool is a bit of an icon, especially with surfers," Mr Roddy said.
"What concerns me and some of the few residents that live here is the size of the site and a failure to take into consideration other buildings.
"I fear that having another tower in front of us will create a definite wind tunnel effect, not to mention the intrusion on the views of our apartments."
Former manager of the Garland apartments on Marine Parade, Rosie Sawyer said when her development was being constructed, an application for an entrance onto the road was refused.
"Our apartments were on a level section of the road and yet we weren't able to get access - there is a new building at the other end of the Bay - Arvia - and they don't have access to Marine Parade, only from Eden Ave so I am puzzled why Flow should get this," she said.
Division 14 councillor Gail O'Neill said she was not in favour of the crossover (access) to the Flow development onto Marine Parade and had raised the issue with the Assessing Planner.
"I am concerned that the proposed crossover is opposite an entrance to Apex Park and could create a dangerous traffic situation," Cr O'Neill said.
"I am also aware of residents' concerns with regard to the size of the development and the setbacks and these will be brought up with the applicants.
"There is also an issue with the 'view corridor' when coming down from Point Danger and the impact this structure would have on what is an iconic outlook over Rainbow Bay."
Cr O'Neill said there were a number of properties that had access onto Marine Parade but her view was that Flow having access on to such a busy road was not preferable.
"The issues of concern have been raised with the applicant and we will await their response," she said.
The developer, S & S Group, has insisted its plans are in line with Gold Coast rules and precedents.
Group director Paul Gedoun said the development was in the height limit of the area and said thoughtful consideration of neighbours had been taken into account.