Toondah Harbour Priority Development Area
On 21 June 2013, Toondah Harbour was declared a Priority Development Area (PDA) under the Economic Development Act 2012 (Qld). This was in response to a joint Queensland State Government and Council commitment to reinforce Toondah Harbour as the regional gateway to Moreton Bay and the islands. On 29 May 2014, the Toondah Harbour PDA Development Scheme was adopted by the State Government.
In late 2014, following a rigorous expression of interest process, Walker Group was selected by the Queensland State Government and Council as the preferred development partner for the PDA project.
On 25 November 2015, a proposed master plan for the $1.4 billion redevelopment of Toondah Harbour was first released by Walker Group, who referred the project to the Federal Government under the Environment and Biodiversity Protection Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act) as a controlled action.
On 9 February 2016, Council, Walker Group and Economic Development Queensland entered into a binding Development Agreement and Infrastructure Agreement.
On 11 May 2017, Walker Group withdrew the original referral and lodged a new referral under the EPBC Act. The Federal Environment Minister decided the project was a controlled action requiring further assessment.
In early June 2018, Walker Group Holdings lodged a new referral, including an updated master plan for Toondah Harbour, with the Federal Government. This plan incorporated a number of initiatives and changes as a result of feedback from the Federal Government, community submissions and leading environmental and wetland experts to enhance the plan from an ecological perspective.
On 23 July 2018, the Federal Government made the decision that the proposed Toondah Harbour Priority Development Area (PDA) development is a ‘controlled action’, allowing the project to proceed to the environmental impact statement (EIS) stage.
This decision follows the unveiling of Walker Group’s updated proposed master plan for the project incorporating a number of new initiatives and considering feedback from leading environmental and wetland experts, public submissions and the Australian Government. Walker Group lodged a new referral to incorporate the new initiatives to the Federal Government for consideration in early June.
On 3 April 2019, the Federal Minister for the Environment issued guidelines for an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). The EIS guidelines determine the scope of the environmental assessment.
The EIS phase will address all potential social, economic and environmental impacts of the proposed development during its construction and operational phases. Environmental, construction and traffic impact management plans will be developed as part of this process.
To view the amended master plan and facts and figures about the proposal, visit the Toondah Harbour website.
The EIS commenced in October 2019 and has been focused on proposed upgrades to the port, harbour and Fison Channel, as well as gathering survey data and information on migratory shorebirds. Walker Group have appointed a leading team of independent scientists, engineers and environmental experts to deliver the EIS. Ensuring the assessment of the project, both under federal and state requirements is rigorous and comprehensive, Walker Group will then be required to obtain other state environment and planning approvals which is expected to take another 12 months.
The EIS phase assesses all potential social, economic and environmental impacts of the proposed development during its construction and operational phases.
The draft EIS is currently is the adequacy review review stage. The next stage is the public notice period (40 business days), which will commence when the Australian Government Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment approves the relase of the draft EIS to the community.
During the public notice period, an engagement program will be rolled out by Walker Group and will include community newsletters, listening posts, pop-up displays, an information and feedback hotline, and website updates. More information on the engagement program can be be found on the Toondah Harbour project site toondah-harbour.com.au
Council is a party to a Development Agreement with Walker Group and Economic Development Queensland.
As is the case with any contract, the financial impact upon Council and consequently, ratepayers, would be significant if Council were to withdraw from the Development Agreement prior to assessment of the project, as per the request outlined in a petition presented to Council in November 2017.
Register your interest
Please register your details on the Walker Group’s Toondah Harbour website to receive project updates.
Opportunities to supply goods and services
If you're interested in supplying goods and services to the Toondah Harbour project, register for project updates on Walker Group's website.
They will work with the Industry Capability Network (ICN) to define work packages for goods and services, and update you when these are ready.