Tarragindi Bowls Club redevelopment

THE HOTTEST issue in Tarragindi is undoubtedly the proposed redevelopment of the much-loved Tarragindi Bowls Club to include a 95-unit, multi-storey complex for retirement living.

Like everything, there are two sides to this story, says Brisbane City South real estate agent Michael Boor.

Supporters say the RetireAustralia development boasts two key benefits:

  1. It secures the future of the bowls club
  2. And greatly increases the capacity of senior residents in Tarragindi and surrounding suburbs to sell the family home but stay in the area.

Critics argue, however, that the proposed six-floor structure (recently revised down from seven, including the ground floor) is:

  • A dominant eyesore that clashes badly with the suburb’s leafy, tin-and-timber Brisbane suburban character
  • Certain to cause traffic, parking and other woes that would harm quality of life for locals.


Plenty oppose the proposal

As one objector submitted to Brisbane City Council on November 28 (the first day of the public notification period): “This development is too high, too dense, too blocky and includes too many dwellings, putting an intolerable strain on traffic and involves a severe lack of parking for the number of dwellings and other proposed facilities.”

The Tarragindi Residents Alliance is fighting the development, objecting to “the size, density and height of this complex” and is urging locals to lodge objections to council before December 19 this year. They have even made available a pre-made objection letter.

(UPDATE: Council received 1450 submissions on the proposal, the alliance reported on its website. A decision is expected in March 2017.)

Also opposed is Graham Perrett, the Federal Member for Moreton (which includes Tarragindi), who criticised the proposal in Federal Parliament.

“It is proposed to be built on land that is currently zoned for sports and recreation in an area of low-to-medium-density housing. This does not fit that (council) plan. It will forever change the character of Tarragindi,” Mr Perrett told Parliament.

Rendering of Tarragindi Bowls Club Redevelopment
A rendering of the proposed Tarragindi Bowls Club redevelopment.

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Is resistance futile?

Opponents, though, would be wise to study the historic Engine Room at Teneriffe, which council approved for development as an eatery despite 370 objections from within the recognised area and several dozen more from outside to take the tally of objectors to almost 500.

And the Kangaroo Point Residents Association was defeated in its battle to stop a residential tower on the triangular block surrounded by Cairns, Lambert and O’Connell streets, which council waved through at 23-storeys (and successfully defended in court) even though its own neighbourhood plan zoned the site for heights only up to 10 storeys.

Residents groups are increasingly fighting with council as government efforts to slow urban sprawl and to “infill” populations around key infrastructure clash with locals fighting to maintain the character and livability of their neighbourhoods.

For example, News Corp’s Brian Bennion reported that “more than 100 residents confronted Brisbane City Council on the rapid rise of multistorey unit development through southeast Brisbane suburbs at a Civic Cabinet Listens forum at Mt Gravatt” in November.

Who’s involved

As Chris Herde reported in the Courier-Mail, retirement village operator RetireAustralia had formed a partnership with Tarragindi Bowls Club, and its owner Yeronga Services and Community Club, to redevelop the property at 30 Andrew Ave.

“RetireAustralia had a 99-year lease on the site and lodged a development application with Brisbane City Council to deliver 95 retirement living apartments, a new clubhouse, a community park and a refurbished bowls green,” Herde wrote.

The notification period formally commenced on the 28 November 2016. The last day for the receipt of submissions for this application is 19 December 2016.

RetireAustralia anticipates council will rule on the application early-mid 2017.