Developers who propose building a quarry at Bells Bridge are appealing Gympie regional Council's decision to refuse the development.
Developers who propose building a quarry at Bells Bridge are appealing Gympie regional Council's decision to refuse the development. Cathy Adams

Controversial quarry takes Gympie council to court

THE developers of a proposed Bells Bridge quarry are taking Gympie Regional Council to court over their decision to refuse the project.

Fortrus Pastoral have appealed the decision in the Planning and Environment court, claiming their development application - which would allow 5000-100,000 tonnes of material be dug up and removed from the site every year - should have been approved.

Lawyers for the group, Corrs Chambers Westgarth, said there were three reasons it should have been given a green light.

A plan for a quarry at Bells Bridge would allow for between 5000-100,000 tonnes of material to be extracted and screened every year at 41ha site beside the Wide Bay Highway.
A plan for a quarry at Bells Bridge would allow for between 5000-100,000 tonnes of material to be extracted and screened every year at 41ha site beside the Wide Bay Highway. Contributed

These included: the proposal can be conditioned to comply with the assessment benchmarks; that there are "other matters which justify the exercise of the Court's discretion... in favour of an approval”; and that the quarry proposal "advances the purposes of the Planning Act 2016 (Qld)”.

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The appeal was lodged on Wednesday.

The council refused Fortrus's application last month on 13 grounds.

Proposed Quarry site at Bells bridge in Gympie.
Proposed Quarry site at Bells bridge in Gympie. Renee Albrecht

Reasons for the refusal included that the project will not avoid "significant” impact on safety and amenity to nearby properties, that Fortrus did not demonstrate it can mitigate the effect of noise, dust, and ground vibration on the locality, and it did not demonstrate an "overriding need” for the development.

"The proposal is contrary to community expectations, as evidenced by the significant number of community objections,” staff said in their refusal recommendation.

Almost 70 objections were made against the proposal when it was open to public feedback.