NT Link road train blocking Ilparpa road. Photo from one of our readers.
By ERWIN CHLANDA
The application for approving a huge industrial complex in a predominantly residential area of Ilparpa is couched in language such as “initial purpose … expected to be … it is anticipated … there will typically be” and so on.
And there is not a word about the reaction from the area’s residents to the use of more than 12 hectares that is – by admission of the applicant, NT Link and Tony Smith – currently unauthorised.
The drafters of the application, MasterPlan SA, clearly see no need to have in their submission a chapter about what the neighbours are thinking. It is already obvious they will unleash a major storm and test the professed resolve of the Gunner Government to halt the creeping industrialisation of farm area land.
“The initial purpose of the transport terminal [at 900 Ilparpa Road] is for the storage of transportable buildings to service the pipeline construction project in Tanami,” says the application.
“The transportable buildings are currently being stored on a temporary basis and will be dispatched to Tanami by the end of July to service the pipeline construction project and will remain in Tanami until March 2019.
“The transportable buildings will then return to the site for approximately four months in 2019, where the buildings are then expected to be transported and used for a separate project in northern NT.
“It is anticipated that other projects requiring the storage of transportable buildings will follow.”
The application says the key components of the development are:
• A dedicated area to accommodate the storage of transportable buildings.
• Use of the existing shed for storage of trailers and dollies.
• An area of land for equipment storage (eg trailers) to the north of the existing storage shed.
• Dedicated areas for parking and truck / vehicle manoeuvrability, of which will be cleared and levelled for this purpose.
“The transport terminal will cater for heavy vehicles including prime movers with 13.7 metre trailers … not exceeding 53.5 metres in total length and light vehicles including body trucks and utes.
“There will typically be no more than three prime movers and three light vehicles onsite at any one point in time.
“In the short term, the average movement of vehicles a day between August 2018 and March 2019 is anticipated to be nil.”
Traffic movements will typically occur during daylight hours between 9 am and 2.30 pm “but the proposed hours of operation [will] align with the NT Environmental Protection Authority requirements” which are Mondays to Saturdays 7am to 7pm; and Sundays and public holidays 9am to 6pm.
In total the proposed development generates a combined requirement of about 59 car parking spaces, the application says, but 20 would suffice for staff and visitors.
“The operations and maximum truck movements associated with the operations consist of five prime movers and two light vehicle movements per day,” says the application.
There is a requirement of the NT Planning Scheme “to ensure that a transport terminal does not, because of appearance, operation and associated vehicle movements, cause detriment to the amenity of a locality or create a potential hazard to traffic on abutting roads” but the application claims required setbacks (side and rear boundaries by 50 metres and from any public road by 100 metres) are planned, except for an existing shed which is about “30 metres from the western boundary and approximately seven metres from the southern boundary.
“The activities within the shed are limited to parking and storage of trailers and dollies, therefore the impacts on the building to the south of the site is considered low.
“On this basis, the core activity, being the storage of transportable buildings, is setback well in excess of 50 metres from the sites southern boundary.”
As for landscaping requirements “to provide effective visual and acoustic screens to minimise potential impacts on the existing and future amenity of adjacent areas and on any public road” the applicants say: “The base of the site is made up of clay, therefore growing additional plants and landscaping would be extremely difficult and an unnatural process … the need for visual and acoustic protections by way of landscaping is considered to be unnecessary.”
This is what the applicants say about the requirement “that transport vehicles do not adversely impact existing roads, nor the amenity of the surrounding locality”: “Vehicle movements are infrequent, and the existing crossover and driveway arrangement has been upgraded to accord with the Council’s standard requirements.”
The photo (at top) provided by a local resident puts that claim into perspective.
“The site has direct and unconstrained access to Ilparpa Road which provides convenient access for vehicles, particularly large trucks,” the application claims.
“There will be no detriment to the public interest as a result of the ongoing use of the site as a transport terminal,” claims the application.