Waste management company Suez withdraws proposal for expanded Queanbeyan site

Waste management company Suez have withdrawn their application for an expanded facility on this site in Queanbeyan. Photo: Kimberley Le Lievre
Waste management company Suez have withdrawn their application for an expanded facility on this site in Queanbeyan. Photo: Kimberley Le Lievre

Residents have welcomed the news the proposed waste facility in Queanbeyan West will not be going ahead after the company withdrew its application.

Waste management company Suez announced on Friday they would be withdrawing their application due to be decided on by a meeting of the Southern Joint Regional Planning Panel scheduled for October 18.

Upon hearing the news on Friday several residents and members of the ratepayers association who had gathered to oppose the facility were overjoyed.

Damian Hanley, who lives 37 metres from the site, said it was an excellent feeling after preparing to move both his home and business away from Queanbeyan.

“It would have severely impacted our quality of life and the value of our property,” Mr Hanley said.

“It sort of feels like the little guy has won.

“I don’t know if elation covers it but it’s pretty bloody awesome.”

George and Julia Dimitriadis, also nearby residents, said considering the potential impacts this was the only appropriate course of action.

“This sort of facility should not be anywhere near an urban area,” Mrs Dimitriadis said.

Mr Dimitriadis added: ““We’re relieved that Suez has seen common sense and withdrawn the proposal.”

“Justice must prevail where the quality of human life is always put ahead of greedy business proposals.”

The Queanbeyan-Palerang council determined on Wednesday to oppose the development application and were due to submit both a written and verbal submission to the JRPP opposing the facility.

The waste station had been a highly contentious issue in the community with residents primarily concerned about odour, traffic and noise.

Suez released a statement to the Queanbeyan Age on Friday officially withdrawing their application.

“Suez has decided to withdraw the Queanbeyan development in its current form,” the statement read.

“We are taking the time to address elements of the proposal, in light of current waste infrastructure strategy assessments being undertaken by the ACT and NSW Governments.

“Suez believes that there still remains the need for waste management facilities to meet the ACT and Queanbeyan’s recycling and recovery needs.”

Peter Marshall, who was selected by the council to make the verbal submission on its behalf to the JRPP, said there is no guarantee Suez will not make another application for their facility.

He suggested the company could choose to select a new location or could seek to address the issues raised by council and residents in a new application for the same site.

Speaking prior to the announcement of Suez withdrawing their application Mayor Tim Overall reiterated many of the public’s concerns.

“Council has concerns about the traffic generating capacity of the development and the impact that will have on the local roads network,” Cr Overall said.

“The development does not protect the amenity of existing residences in relation to potential odour impacts.

“I think the other concern for councillors was that the proposed development doesn’t satisfy the minimum recommended buffer distance and in summary our general view was that it was not in the public’s interest.”

The JRPP will no longer hold a determination meeting in relation with the issue.