Stephen Strachan is pleased the first lot of land at Beecher has been signed over to Conservation Volunteers Australia in Beecher. Photo Mike Richards / The Observer
Stephen Strachan is pleased the first lot of land at Beecher has been signed over to Conservation Volunteers Australia in Beecher. Photo Mike Richards / The Observer Mike Richards GLA220316LAND

Beecher development land handed over to conservation group

IT'S in the middle of Beecher's largest development, yet you won't be seeing any houses on this vacant land.

It's because, in a Queensland first, all seven and a half hectares is slated for environmental development.

The land has been donated to the Conservation Volunteers Australia. Senior engineer at Engineers Queensland and land developer Lowtian Proprietary Ltd director Stephen Strachan said it was a win-win decision.

These areas within the development were too steep to subdivide.

Gladstone members of the not-for-profit group will use the land as an environmental project.

The land will now be protected from further clearing or residential development.

"We found that quite a lot of the land was quite useful for being preserved for environmental purposes, but not suitable for sub division," Mr Strachan said.

"(Conservation Volunteers Australia) can use this opportunity to grow more native plants and introduce native animals."

Two parcels of land, one more than seven hectares and the other three, will be handed over.

Conservation Volunteers Australia Queensland manager Caitlin Davies said it mirrored a similar donation made in Victoria in 2013.

The donation was made by Calliope man, Jim Whyte.

"We have seen the land go from being completely bare with lots of weeds, rabbits and looking very overgrown to now having wildlife come in like native animals and birds," Ms Davies said.

Although it is not confirmed what the land will be used for, CVA already has some ideas moving forward.

Ms Davies said part of the Beecher land still has features from an original rainforest.

The group is expected to be exempt from Gladstone Regional Council rates, as council has a policy which allows a rates exemption if land is being used for a purpose which has a public service element.

  • The Beecher development, which started in 2003 was part of the vision from the Calliope Shire Council.

It features more than 200 homes and has created alternative routes for residents in times of flooding.

At the time the Beecher area was regularly flooding.

The development included building a bridge at Wyndham Rd, which eventually helped residents in times of heavy rainfall.

There are still 80 more homes to be developed, expected to be done at a rate of 12 - 20 per year.



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