Federal Environment Minister Sussan Ley scopes Toondah site

MINISTER IN TOWN: Bowman MP Andrew Laming and Federal Environment Minister Sussan Ley at Cleveland, looking towards North Stradbroke Island. Photo: Stacey Whitlock
MINISTER IN TOWN: Bowman MP Andrew Laming and Federal Environment Minister Sussan Ley at Cleveland, looking towards North Stradbroke Island. Photo: Stacey Whitlock

FEDERAL Environment Minister Sussan Ley scoped Toondah Harbour today where a controversial $1.4 billion residential and marina development is proposed.

A spokesman for Ms Ley said she visited the area with department representatives to gain a first hand appreciation of the site and some of the issues.

Ms Ley declined to comment on the Walker Corp development proposal which is at the Environmental Impact Study stage.

"She will not make any determinations and has not yet received a departmental recommendation report," he said.

Bowman MP Andrew Laming said Ms Ley was looking at sites of environmental significance around the country.

In the Redlands, she also visited Indigiscapes and Sirromet.

Ms Ley said the focus of her Redlands visit had been to see the way the environment and human footprint coexisted.

"As minister for the environment people often think it's all about the bush and areas that are exclusively environmental," she said.

"But of course, people live where koalas live. Then there's Stradbroke Island and how you maintain that as a great tourist attraction by keeping its natural beauty. I think Redlands does that extremely well."

SCOPE: Ms Ley took a look around the Toondah site on Friday.

SCOPE: Ms Ley took a look around the Toondah site on Friday.

Toondah communications manager Dolan Hayes said Walker welcomed Ms Ley's visit.

Mr Laming said he would also be speaking with Ms Ley about tourism.

"With all the tourists coming into Australia, how much can Redlands divert as they move towards the Gold Coast?" he said.

"How much of a cut can Redlands get? How much can Straddie get? How much can Sirromet get? And can we co-ordinate these offerings to make an even stronger trail through Redlands?"

Ms Ley's visit came after preliminary environmental impact studies for Toondah Harbour got under way in October.

The draft EIS is expected to be released for public comment in late 2020.

"We will put forward a proposal at the end of the EIS process that is informed by the facts and science," Mr Hayes said.