The Right Honourable the LORD MAYOR (Councillor Graham QUIRK), Chairman of the Establishment and Coordination Committee, moved, seconded by the DEPUTY MAYOR (Councillor Adrian SCHRINNER), that the report of the meeting of that Committee held on 17 March 2014, be adopted.
Chairman: Is there any debate?
LORD MAYOR: Thanks, Madam Chairman. Just before coming to the report itself, I want to go back to the question that Councillor DICK had initially asked me. As you would be aware, that caught me a little by surprise that the old E&Cs were not being put up in terms of the website. I have made inquiries about that, and I can assure Councillor DICK that any backlog will be put up.
There are some issues regarding website migration, but that said, they still should have been put up—even if it was manually. So they will be up by tomorrow, and I can only apologise in relation to those not being available. They ought to have been, and it surprised me that they weren't.
Before coming to the formal report, I wanted to make a couple of comments regarding Anzac Square. This Council, in conjunction with the State Government, are undertaking a significant refurbishment of Anzac Square. The State Government are putting in the lion's share of those funds, around $11.4 million, and we are putting in $2.2 million towards that project.
It is a project where we have a committee of people headed by Nigel Chamier. It is under the political watch of Councillor Matthew BOURKE. We have also Major General Peter Arnison engaged in that body as is Mr Andrew King. Their role, primarily, is to overview what needs to be done, and will then be to overview the work in relation to that project. Anzac Square is suffering from many of the ailments that this building suffered from—concrete at an era when it was nowhere near as strong as it is today; water leakage into what was the old administration offices of the RSL (Returned and Services League), and several other aspects. The intent is to undertake certain stages of that work, have that work commence soon after the Anzac Day ceremony this year, and to have a couple of stages of that work complete and ready for celebration of the 100th anniversary of the landing at Gallipoli.
Following that celebration, April 2015, and that commemoration, we will then be undertaking certain other stages of work which will very much be about the future. It will be making sure that there is a place making aspect to this work, opening it up to the general public to a far greater extent than it is now, and providing accessibility of a far more acceptable level than was the case certainly when it was constructed in 1930. So that will be a place of greater public interest, we hope, and certainly a greater public involvement. It will also have an educational aspect to it.
So today I just want to table a copy of the report of the committee that has been working, and it is headed, ‘Saving Our National Memorial’. Again, if I could just ask that that report could be tabled for the information of Councillors.
The bus and train tunnel, or what is now called the BaT (Bus and Train) tunnel, it was named during the course of the week. It was named out of a public competition. The State primarily ran this competition. There were about 1,000 entries, I understand, and that was the final decision that was made in relation to it. I guess what is important for these projects is not what they are called but what they do. Again, that project will certainly be a game changer for this city in relation to both bus and train travel in our city of Brisbane.
Today I also announced that Fortitude Valley is set to receive another hotel development. This time it is by way of the TC Beirne building, a 112-room hotel, $20 million in terms of refurbishment of that heritage listed building. It will create 100 jobs. TC Beirne building was, of course, named after the Irish draper, Thomas Charles Beirne. It was built in 1902, and so that will form part of what is an ongoing $1 billion investment in fortitude Valley, and we welcome that as another addition and a boost to that area between the Brunswick Street Mall and the Chinatown Mall.
I think that is about it. I will go to the two items on the agenda. The first one there is the granting of telecommunications lease to Telstra. This is up at Bartley's Hill Reservoir in the Hamilton Ward. It has been some years now that Telstra have had a site there in terms of their telecommunications facility. Back on 1 June 2004 was when a lease was signed, and that went through to June 2011.
There has been ongoing negotiations regarding the application. So this proposal is to extend by way of a first-term lease for the period of 10 years from 30 June 2011 to 30 June 2021, and then a further five years beyond 2021. It will provide for a minimum 5 per cent increase per annum or CPI (consumer price index), whichever is the greater. So, a return to Council there.
The other item is a situation out in the Wacol area. There is a major application by Metroplex out there, the Westgate infrastructure agreement. That involves the establishment of a bus stop at the expense of the developer, and that was to be located on Boundary Road at Wacol. There was a requirement for a partial take of property at 4 Bukulla Street—I think that is how it is pronounced—and that was through the residents there, the McPartland family.
They, in turn, when we entered negotiations for the purchase of a portion of their land, some 1780 square metres, they said that they would prefer to do a land swap than to have a resumption. So it is that there is a piece of land in very close proximity which is of a fairly equivalent value—it is $245,000 versus $250,000 on those pieces of land, so Council has made the determination to do a land exchange rather than seek an outright resumption in relation to that need. They are the two items before Council for consideration today.
Chairman: Further debate; Councillor DICK.
Councillor DICK: Thanks, Madam Chair; I rise to speak on the two items, Clause A and Clause B, the first being the granting of a telecommunications lease to Telstra Corporation in respect of the parkland at Bartley's Hill Reservoir. I understand that the lease lapsed on 29 June 2011 and the holdover provisions allow Telstra to take out a yearly lease. Now Telstra wishes to take out two successive leases which will grant them permission to remain on site for a further 15 years, and the rental price has been set at $23,944 with a yearly increase of either CPI or 5 per cent, whichever is higher. We will be supporting item A.
I just say through you to the LORD MAYOR, I certainly hope that local residents are fully briefed and informed. Obviously the neighbours nearby have been living with this for a number of years, for some time now, and I certainly hope that they will be consulted and advised of Council's decision.
Clause B, as the LORD MAYOR said, is the land exchange at Wacol. I, as the local Councillor, have no problem with this item coming to Council today. It is a land swap to allow a bus stop to be built as part of the Metroplex development. This has been a long time coming. I have been a supporter of that site as a generator for investment and jobs in the south-west of Brisbane. I know there have been a number of issues, legal requirements, and a whole range of issues that the Council has been involved with. I know any investment in public transport in critical places like Wacol, where we are seeing more and more development, is key.
As I have said before, this is one of the fastest growing corridors in our city, or the fastest growing corridor, and I want to make sure that public transport is accessible, frequent and reliable. I, too, want to acknowledge the owners of the land. I have had a little to do with them over the years. They are very upstanding and great local business people in that district, and certainly I know want the best for their investments, but also for the broader community, and certainly are big supporters of development in and around Wacol. I thank them for their cooperation, and I acknowledge the good work that they do in providing employment and opportunities certainly as we move forward as we see expansion and development in and around that corridor.
Chairman: Further debate; Councillor JOHNSTON.
Councillor JOHNSTON: Yes, I rise to speak on item B.
Councillor JOHNSTON: There are a couple of things of concern in this to me, and I appreciate, and I have listened to what Councillor DICK has said as the local Councillor, that he is happy with the arrangement. But to my mind there are a few issues that are unclear.
Some 1,700 square metres of land is being resumed for a bus stop. That is a huge amount of land, and I fail to understand why such a large proportion of the land is required for a bus stop. I don't know if that means there's a road extension happening as well or what is going on. It is not clear on the file, and I can see on the file that there have been questions raised internally by the Council officers about the amount of land that has been requested with respect to this matter. So it is unclear to me why such a large proportion of the site is required.
There is also a concern, I think, about the nature of the swap. The other part of this that is unclear to me is: we are providing the residents with land on the other side of the development which is belonging to Council, which Council originally purchased for drainage purposes which are no longer required. I do not know why—and I believe we should know why—that land is no longer required for drainage purposes. If we hand it over to these residents, does that mean they will be able to build on it, and will there be hydrology impacts that flow from allowing that to be incorporated into a site that is able to be developed?
So there are a couple of concerns that I have about this. I note—and this is a positive—that valuation was done on this site prior to all of this happening. Now, that is a plus, because normally this Administration gets the valuation after it has made a decision, but they went and got a valuation last year, so that is at least one good thing.
But, look, at this stage I have some unanswered questions about this, particularly why 1,700 square metres of land is required? And two, what is going to happen with respect to the future use of the site that was allocated for drainage purposes, and whether or not that will be built on? The third thing is it does seem to be, based on the file, there's a lot of concern between the officers themselves over the size of the batter that's required, who should pay for that, and all of those related issues.
This might be a good thing, but there are too many unanswered questions about why this is going ahead, and I genuinely have concerns over future development if that site is now allocated for drainage, and I would hope that it is not going to be built on.
Chairman: Further debate; LORD MAYOR.
LORD MAYOR: Madam Chairman, the officers obviously dealt with the issues pertaining to those lands. There is no further requirement in relation to drainage associated with that land. We've got a significant drainage plan associated with the development. It will be a whole of catchment drainage plan that is part and parcel of the development agreement, and the infrastructure provisions associated with that major estate.
The need, of course, for the bus stop, the metre-age, of course there does need to be a set down, deceleration lane requirements, and so forth, so we are not in the practice of taking any more land than we need to for these facilities. That has been worked out, determined, and agreed to by the local residents. The local residents wouldn't have been happy to have given up any more than what was required in any event either. So I am satisfied that all of those matters that Councillor JOHNSTON has sought have been examined, and I am confident in terms of the outcome.
Chairman: I will put the motion for item A.
Clause A put
Upon being submitted to the meeting the motion for the adoption of Clause A of the report of the Establishment and Coordination Committee was declared carried on the voices.
Chairman: I will put the motion for item B.
Clause B put
Upon being submitted to the meeting the motion for the adoption of Clause B of the report of the Establishment and Coordination Committee was declared carried on the voices.
The report read as follows
ATTENDANCE: The Right Honourable the Lord Mayor (Councillor Graham Quirk) (Chairman); Deputy Mayor (Councillor Adrian Schrinner) (Deputy Chairman); and Councillors Krista Adams, Matthew Bourke, Amanda Cooper, Peter Matic, David McLachlan, and Julian Simmonds.
A THE GRANTING OF A TELECOMMUNICATIONS LEASE TO TELSTRA CORPORATION LIMITED, IN RESPECT OF PART OF THE LAND AT BARTLEY’S HILL RESERVOIR
1. The Divisional Manager, Brisbane Infrastructure Division, provided the information below.
2. The existing lease to Telstra Corporation Limited (Telstra) at Bartley’s Hill Reservoir, described as Lease E in Lot 3 on RP55482 on SP168201, commenced on 1 June 2004 and expired on 29 June 2011.
3. Telstra has remained in occupation of the premises as a yearly tenant under the holdover provisions of the now expired lease. Telstra is seeking new lease tenure for 15 years, by way of two successive leases. The first lease being for a term of ten years and the second lease being for a term of five years.
4. As this is an existing facility that was established in accordance with the prevailing regulatory provisions and also because Telstra has rights under the Telecommunications Act 1997 that permits it to use and occupy the land (as in this case) for what is a ‘low impact’ facility, it would be unreasonable for Council to refuse Telstra’s request to secure its new lease tenure.
5. As the facility is already in place and complies with the necessary regulatory provisions, no development assessment and/or consent is required from Council for the proposed lease.
6. Telstra is co-located at this site with a monopole (wireless communications infrastructure) owned by Crown Castle. Crown Castle’s tenure is secured until 30 June 2025 and so it is considered reasonable for Telstra to be able to continue with its occupation of the land.
7. It is considered that the payment by Telstra of an annually increased lease rental commencing at $23,944.76 (plus GST) will meet Council’s policy requirements.
8. The Divisional Manager submits the following recommendation with which the Committee agrees.
THAT COUNCIL RESOLVES IN ACCORDANCE WITH ATTACHMENT A, hereunder.
DRAFT RESOLUTION TO ENTER INTO TELECOMMUNICATIONS LEASES WITH TELSTRA CORPORATION LIMITED OVER ITS EXISTING TELECOMMUNICATIONS FACILITY THAT IT BE RESOLVED THAT As:
(1) The existing lease to Telstra Corporation Limited (Telstra) at Bartley’s Hill Reservoir, described as Lease E in Lot 3 on RP55482 on SP168201, commenced on 1 June 2004 and expired on 29 June 2011.
(2) Telstra has remained in occupation of the premises as a yearly tenant under the holdover provisions of the expired lease and is now seeking new lease tenure for 15 years, by way of two successive leases.
(3) The facility on Lot 3 on RP55482 on SP168201 is an existing facility that was established in accordance with the prevailing regulatory provisions.
(4) Telstra has rights under the Telecommunications Act 1997 to use and occupy the land as it is considered a ‘low impact’ facility and therefore no development assessment and/or consent is required from the Council for the proposed lease.
(5) Council resolves to grant and enter into two successive telecommunications leases with Telstra over its existing Telecommunications facility at the Bartley’s Hill Reservoir in accordance with the terms and conditions set out in Attachment B and otherwise on terms that are satisfactory to the Chief Legal Counsel, Brisbane City Legal Practice and the Manager, Asset Portfolio Management.
LEASE TERMS SHEET Telecommunications Lease between Brisbane City Council and Telstra Corporation Limited: Lease E on Lot 3 on RP 55482 on SP 168201, Bartley’s Hill Reservoir, Ascot Lease Term 1: 10 years commencing on 30 June 2011.
Lease Term 2: Five years commencing on 30 June 2021.
Rental: $23,944.76 (plus GST) being Council’s approved rental for ‘low impact’ facilities at the commencement date of Lease 1.
Rent Reviews: The greater of CPI or 5 per cent on each anniversary of the commencement date. Market Rent Review at the commencement date of lease 2.
Break Clause: Lease 2 includes a break clause allowing Telstra to terminate the lease at the commencement date, subject to Telstra providing notice to Council not less than six months prior to the commencement date.
General: The leases to be on terms that are satisfactory to the Chief Legal Counsel, Brisbane City Legal Practice, and the Manager, Asset Portfolio Management.
B PROPOSED LAND EXCHANGE AT BUKULLA STREET, WACOL
10. The Divisional Manager, Brisbane Infrastructure Division, provided the information below.
11. In 2013, Council and Metroplex signed the Westgate Infrastructure Agreement under which Metroplex agreed to build a bus stop at its expense on Boundary Road at Wacol, adjacent to the property at 4 Bukulla Street described as Lot 1 on SP132958, owned by Mr James Anthony McPartland and Mrs Judy Kay McPartland as Trustee for the McPartland Staff Superannuation Fund.
12. During negotiations for the infrastructure agreement, Council committed to provide the land required for the bus stop to Metroplex.
13. To allow construction of the bus stop, an area of approximately 1,780 square metres of the McPartland’s land is required, partially for the bus stop and partially for batter banks. That area is shown as the area marked in yellow on the plan set out in Attachment C, submitted on file.
14. Mr and Mrs McPartland have offered to transfer the land required to Council if in turn Council transfers to them Council land of equal area which abuts the eastern boundary of their landholding, Lot 175 on SP132961, with Council to fund all aspects of the transaction.
15. In January 2001, Council resumed Lot 175 on SP132961 adjacent to the McPartland’s land for a purpose incidental to drainage purposes. This land is no longer required for that purpose.
16. Exchanging this property for the land needed for the bus stop would satisfy that requirement of the Westgate Infrastructure Agreement and facilitate the construction of the bus stop, while minimising the financial cost to Council.
17. An independent valuation undertaken by Harvey Ehlers and Associates assessed the value of the land required from the McPartland’s property for the bus stop at $245,000 and the value of Lot 175 (to be transferred to Mr McPartland) at $250,000. Refer to the valuation at Attachment D, submitted on file.
Implications of proposal 18. The completion of this land exchange will facilitate the construction of the bus stop in accordance with the Westgate Infrastructure Agreement with Metroplex, and will promote a value-for-money resolution of the issue to Council.
19. The Divisional Manager submits the following recommendation with which the Committee agrees.
THAT COUNCIL RESOLVES IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE DRAFT RESOLUTION SET OUT IN ATTACHMENT A, hereunder.
DRAFT RESOLUTION TO APPROVE THE LAND EXCHANGE AT BUKULLA STREET, WACOL THAT IT BE RESOLVED THAT As:
1. Council owns land at 16 Bukulla Street, Wacol described as Lot 175 on SP132961; and
2. The adjoining landowners, James Anthony McPartland and Judy Kay McPartland, own land situated at 4 Bukulla Street, Wacol described as Lot 1 on SP132958; and
3. The adjoining land owners, James Anthony McPartland and Judy Kay McPartland, have offered to transfer to Council that part of their property required for the road and bus stop as shown in yellow on Attachments B and C in exchange for Council land described as Lot 175 on SP132961 as shown in pink on Attachments B and C, submitted on file, on a square metre for square metre basis (or as close to that basis as practical), with Council responsible for funding all aspects of the transaction; and
4. It is considered that Council would benefit from the proposed land exchange as described in item 3 above.
5. Council resolves to approve the exchange of the land described in item 3 above.