AN application for a proposed restaurant in Carabooda, previously rejected by Wanneroo City Council, is being reconsidered next Tuesday.
The owners of an Old Yanchep Road lavender farm applied in November 2015 to build a restaurant on the 10.2ha site, which was rejected unanimously by councillors at their meeting last December.
It followed objections from nearby landowners because of perceived impacts on their businesses, which are within the rural resource zone, and councillors considered it incompatible with the surrounding intensive agriculture land uses and that the restaurant could be affected by activities associated with these.
City planning implementation manager Pas Bracone told councillors at Tuesday’s briefing session the owners appealed to the SAT and following mediation, submitted an amended proposal to help prevent the restaurant being affected by noise, odour and spray drift from surrounding properties and avoid visitor complaints on these issues.
It included signage to be displayed in the carpark advising of potential effects and entrance was at the visitor’s own risk, and a landscape plan showing plants to be established around the restaurant and site boundary as a buffer.
But he said an environmental consultant engaged on behalf of the City concluded the landscape buffer would not sufficiently deal with noise, odour and spray drift, and the City’s lawyer advised it would still be obligated to investigate complaints so believed it did “not adequately address council’s reasons for refusal” and recommended reaffirming their previous judgment.
As part of the decision, the City was instructed to draft a local planning policy to guide assessment of further sensitive land uses in rural areas and Cr Domenic Zappa asked what stage it was at.
Planning and sustainability director Mark Dickson said they were still preparing the policy and it should be presented to council mid-year.
Co-owner Gary Wood used public question time to seek more information on why his application was being recommended for refusal, saying he was “very confused”.
He said he had not experienced noise, odour and dust in his many years working out in the lavender farm.
“I haven’t had anything come onto my property in 12 years,” Mr Wood said.
He asked for evidence backing the objections and if the environmental consultant had visited his property.
Mr Bracone said surrounding landowners raised concerns during consultation and he believed the consultant had made the assessment based on information provided rather than attending the site.