The community will be asked for its opinion on a proposed takeaway food outlet on the corner of High Street in Busselton before the Busselton City Council decides if it will rezone the land for the purpose.
City officers had recommended the proposal for the corner of High Street and Bussell Highway be rejected as it was incompatible with the residential environment around the site.
Rumours have circulated fast food giant Hungry Jacks could be considering opening at the site. Despite opposition by adjoining landowners and some councillors, the elected members voted 5-3 in favour of Councillor Grant Henley’s alternative motion to advertise the proposal at Wednesday’s council meeting.
Cr Henley acknowledged the concerns of City officers and landowners, but believed the proposal was deserving of at least proceeding to public consultation.
“I agree consideration of ensuring consultation should be weighted in favour of the impacted neighbouring properties rather than a broader community wish for a takeaway outlet of any persuasion and would consider such in that context prior to final adoption,” he said.
Cr Terry Best said the council should see all angles of objections to the proposal before making a decision.
High Street resident Natalie Barber appealed to elected members to vote against the proposal as she had concerns about the anti-social behaviour and littering associated with fast food outlets.
She added the site was not ideal as it was located on a “very busy” traffic intersection, which was already hard to navigate.
Cr David Binks asked his peers to vote against the proposal as it had insufficient merits and cited concerns about traffic, anti-social behaviour and odour emissions. He said a takeaway food outlet was the most intense form of business, and had no place in a zone of transition between residential and commercial areas.
Mayor Ian Stubbs also objected to the motion, concerned that sending the proposal for public consultation “indicates we may support the proposal”.
“The people adjoining the property are long-term residents and deserve to be protected in a residential area,” he said.
“Local governments plan the use of land to avoid conflicting land uses.
“That is the point of town planning.
“This proposal creates serious conflict and we should avoid it.”