45-day reprieve for Port Douglas Fairmont Resort project
The future of the proposed Chiodo Corp. development of the $300 million luxury resort, Accor Fairmont Port Douglas, took a significant turn today when a 45-day pause period was instituted to enable the developer and Douglas Shire Council planners to meet and discuss the latter’s concerns.
This follows an e-mail message late last week from the planners to Chiodo Corp. advising them that they would be recommending Councillors vote to refuse this project at the next open Council meeting on 27 July.
Councillors will now no longer be required to vote on this matter at the July meeting.
And in another development, Newsport was advised today by Mayor Michael Kerr that a Councillors workshop scheduled for Tuesday has been cancelled. The Fairmont proposal was among multiple issues to be discussed.
The workshop was cancelled because of the unavailability of some Councillors, among other reasons.
The planners’ e-mail to Chiodo said: “Unfortunately staff will be required to recommend refusal for the Fairmont project as discussed. Ultimately the scale of the project does not comply with a significant number of performance outcomes and overall outcomes from the relevant codes.
It added that the proposal does not comply, or nearly comply with the height, scale and bulk requirements reflected in the Strategic Framework, Tourist Accommodation Zone Code and Landscape Values Overlay Code, adding the significant on-site car parking short fall is not supportable by officers.
“I am delighted that we will get the opportunity to meet with the planners face-to-face and we welcome the 45-day ‘halt’ or ‘pause’ period,” said developer Paul Chiodo.
“The current Covid lockdown will be a key factor as to when we meet, but I hope this can happen over the next week.
“We need to address Council’s concerns so we can move forward and ensure that we are able to deliver an ultra-modern, sophisticated and luxurious product,” he said.
Chiodo added that it is important to understand that he would not deliver a proposal that would fail to meet Council’s requirements.
Mayor Kerr, who endorses development in the shire, expressed his frustration today regarding current developments between Council planners and the developer.
“I would like to see the developers and the planners working together and the former conforming to the planning scheme.
“I also question their current marketing campaign when the development application has not been approved,” said Kerr.
The proposed 253-room resort is regarded among the biggest developments slated for Port Douglas since Christopher Skase made his presence felt in the 1980s.
It is being developed on the old Havana project – situated between Oaks Hotels and Resorts and the Mirage Country Club.
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