Local area development plan approved for St Helens
THE first of three draft local area development plans for Fraser Coast suburbs expected to boom in the next few decades has been endorsed by councillors.
St Helen's draft local area plan will influence future development applications in a 533-hectare area on the fringes of Maryborough.
Councillors voted to accept the plan in a council meeting earlier this month, where a development application for a retirement and lifestyle village in St Helen's was also given preliminary approval.
Fraser Coast Mayor Gerard O'Connell said the area plan had directly helped to secure the approvals for the Hibiscus Gardens village.
"This paves the way for some new residential and semi-commercial development," he said.
Similar draft local area plans are being developed for Nikenbah and Granville.
Cr O'Connell said those plans were expected to go to councillors for adoption in the next few months.
He said other councils such as the Sunshine Coast had since begun to include local area plans in their planning schemes.
"It has become almost a benchmark," he said.
The local plans have been in the works since 2012, and will be incorporated into the Fraser Coast Planning Scheme released earlier this year.