Court approves second hinterland wave park

THE Sunshine Coast Hinterland will be home to two world-class surf parks that aim to attract hundreds of thousands of tourists each year, following a court decision to dismiss an appeal by the developer of a competing facility.

Sanad Capital, the owners of a $150m Glenview surf park, had appealed a decision by the Sunshine Coast Council to approve a second park – to be operated by Surf Parks Australia – some 21 kilometres away at Glass House Mountains.

The appeal, initiated in January 2022, has now drawn to a close with a decision by the Planning and Environment Court moving to dismiss the appeal.

Sanad Capital had claimed the competing surf park should not go ahead because there was no proven economic, community or planning need for the second facility.

It also argued that there would be unacceptable economic and other adverse impacts on existing approved tourism developments. It would also result in the loss of agricultural land.

But in a decision handed down this week Judge Glen Cash said in his view the Surf Parks development should be approved because despite the loss of agricultural land, Surf Parks had shown there was the need for this type of development and there were no other suitable sites.

“The loss of a small area of good quality agricultural land will be more than offset by the economic and social benefits provided by the proposed development, which can be delivered without unacceptable impacts on amenity or town planning considerations,” Judge Cash wrote in his judgment.

The proposed Sanad Capital development including villa resort facilities.

“The is no discernible community opposition to the proposal, much less an indication that the development would be contrary to expectations of the community.”

Sunshine Coast Council expects that upwards of 200,000 people a year would use both parks.

The Surf Parks Australia development is at Glass House Mountains adjacent to the Bruce Highway and about 21km south of the Glenview development on Steve Irwin Way.

While Surf Parks has plans for a 315m wave pool and large swimming pool, restaurant and bar, Sanad’s wave park includes a massive 160-villa resort.

Sanad’s Glenview development is currently under construction.

Final orders by the court will be made in the coming weeks with the parties able to make further representations. Sanad is not commenting ahead of these orders.