Major expansion to the crater retreat maps

An artist's impression of what the newly proposed villas at Mt Quincan Crater Retreat would look like.

An artist’s impression of what the newly proposed villas at Mt Quincan Crater Retreat would look like.

The grounds currently boast six secluded treehouses, complete with spas, fireplaces and full kitchens, with views of the Tablelands or Mt Quincan Crater, as well as a teahouse that occasionally hosts wedding parties.

The owners, Kavorka Pty Ltd, are now looking to expand the accommodation capacity of the refuge and are applying to build 13 additional cabins, a new cafe to replace the teahouse and a microbrewery.

According to the development application, 12 studio-style villas will be built with a kitchen, living room, bathroom and veranda, suitable for two people, while a special ‘honeymoon suite’ villa will be built with a spa and plunge pool. swimming pool.

The new villas will accommodate an increase of 26 guests, creating the need for two additional part-time staff.

“With the exception of the proposed microbrewery, the proposed development does not involve any new uses or activities on the site, only an expansion of the scale and intensity of existing, legal uses,” the application said.

“The proposed cafe is intended to replace the existing legal ‘teahouse’ use on the site, so that the reception area (to which the teahouse is restricted) can be used more appropriately for weddings and by guests staying at the retreat.”

The document states that the microbrewery and café would be expected to have a capacity of around 50 people per day and would require three members of staff, with opening hours likely to be around 11am to 7pm, although opening hours for events will vary from time to time. time may vary.

The owners believe that the expansion of the crater retreat will bring broad benefits to the region.

“The proposed development will create additional tourism opportunities for the region – i.e. nature-based accommodation options, food tourism, cottage industries etc. – thereby increasing the number of people visiting the site and the region as a whole. ‘ it says in the application.

“This will contribute to the tourism ‘attraction’ and offering in the Tablelands region, which will have flow-on benefits for the entire region.

“The potential benefits that the proposed development could bring to the region should therefore be a key consideration in the council’s decision-making process.”

According to the application, the proposed development will not have any adverse visual impact on the surrounding area, nor any impact in terms of noise, traffic, dust and odor.

The report also highlights that the refuge is “appropriately located within the rural zone, namely because it is an extension of existing, legal land use, but also because it is functionally dependent on the landscape values, rural background and key environmental aspects. functions available on the site”.

“The proposed development also includes a cottage industry (microbrewery) which, when scaled up appropriately, will be supported in the rural zone, and a café which will focus on using local produce from surrounding farms wherever possible,” said the report.

“In relation to agricultural land, the report has shown that the easternmost, flatter part of the area will continue to be used for rural activities and that the proposed development will only take place on those parts of the area that are not suitable for typical rural activities. activities.”

The application has been submitted to the council for assessment and will be subject to impact assessment, meaning local people will have the opportunity to submit views for or against the development once the community consultation phase begins.