Tuesday 29 September 2009

Telstra wins Clifton mobile phone tower appeal

In December last year, Telstra appealed to the Planning and Environment Court against objectors, which included the Cairns Regional Council, of their plans to build a communications tower on the Northern Beaches.

A large number of submissions from local residents at Clifton Beach, objected to Telstra constructing a 27mt communications tower on the corner of Clifton Beach Road and Captain Cook Highway.

Telstra Country Wide's Area General Manager Wally Donaldson told CairnsBlog in December that the decision by Cairns Regional Council was not justified.

"That's why we are contesting this," Donaldson said. "We're only building this tower because there is a demand for increased services on the Northern Beaches."

I originally reported about this in late October, when Cairns Regional Council rejected Telstra's application to go ahead with the structure, amid strong local objection.

However, today Telstra's appeal was upheld in the State Planning and Environment Court today, and Judge Wilson allowed their appeal.

The Combined Beaches Residents Association are not impressed. "Don't you think it's amazing that a multinational company the size of Telstra, are fighting to have their monster high steel monster in a location where local residents and Council have stood up and said no?," they said at the time.

Judge Wilson's findings can be read herek


Quien Sabe said...

Hi Mike,

The judge in the case was His Honour Judge Alan Wilson.

His judgement can be read here

Fiona Tulip, President, CBCA said...

The Combined Beaches Community Association would like to thank publicly all the 414 submitters against a 27m telecommunications tower in the residential suburb of Clifton Beach, that has now been given approval yesterday by Judge Wilson.

Yesterday's findings were very disheartening to everyone involved, and we wish to thank our members and other community residents for all your support over this time.

It seems incredulous that 414 submissions from the community sending a clear "No message" on the issue of Telstra erecting a 27m high communications tower in our residential suburb and Cairns Regional Council’s rejection of Telstra’s DA was not enough for a court of law to rule in favour of,and to stop this eyesore from further despoiling our visual amenity on the Northern Beaches, especially when Telstra had many other options open to them.

It should also be acknowledged that Simon Clark from Council’s City Assessment Unit, did a sterling job in the witness box defending Council’s decision and he should be commended for his stance on behalf of Council and ultimately, our community. He was well prepared for the rigorous questioning and kept his cool throughout what must have been an ordeal for any mortal person. Well done Simon, and we appreciate your efforts on our behalf.

There are also some legal eagles in this town who gave us some helpful tips and some of their time, you know who you are, and we appreciate your assistance too!!

Of course, we are also all forever indebted to Warren and Pete, who both gave up 3 days of work time to participate and run the community’s case, and I suspect many many other hours burning the midnight oil gathering material and putting our arguments down in a concise and logical manner and ensuring all the paperwork was registered in time etc.

We will just have to wait and see now what the conditions are, if any, that will be imposed on Telstra in their construction of this "eyesore" at the gateway to our suburb.

We just wonder how many of these communication towers are ever going to be enough?????? This will be the third one between Trinity Beach and Buchan Point!!

Anyway, we always said that we would give it a go and give it our best shot, and the most important thing is that we did exactly that.

If you do not give it a go, you will never know what could have been possible.

As we have another communtiy matter also coming before the P & E court, it has given us all invaluable experience, and probably more determination to seek justice for our community.

Barb D said...

So much for democracy - despite approx. 400 locals & Cairns Regional Council rejecting Telstras application for 27M monopole in a residential area of Clifton Beach their appeal has been upheld by the Planning & Environment Court - no doubt on a legal technicality that has no regard whatsoever for the impact on the local community - SHAMEFUL!!