Following Townsville City Council’s approval of a Lion-owned microbrewery and taphouse late last year, rival brewery Townsville Brewing Co has commenced an appeal to oppose the decision.
Townsville Brewery owner Carey Ramm has lodged an appeal to Townsville Planning and Environment Court after Council rejected his initial concerns that Lion’s Palmer Street location was in a high-density residential zone and not in an industrial zone befitting a microbrewery of its size.
In its development approval, the council said that while it acknowledged the residential zoning of the site and the intent to provide for high-density development, it also acknowledged that the site is located within Townsville’s “premier restaurant and entertainment precinct and as such provides an alternative development to enhance the vibrancy of the entertainment strip”.
The council also noted that Lion’s application was to develop an existing building and not redevelop the site.
Ramm also contended that the development would adversely impact traffic, amenity, noise and odour and would encourage antisocial behaviour and binge drinking with no commercial kitchen envisaged for the site.
In its approval, Council set a maximum noise level of 75 decibels and rejected that the absence of a commercial kitchen would lead to binge drinking and antisocial behaviour.
“In terms of the antisocial behaviour and binge drinking, licenced premises are required to adhere to the RSA conditions. Furthermore, the applicant has indicated that the proponent operates a number of licensed venues across Australia with no breaches of RSA requirements and conditions.”
In his submission, Ramm also argued that the proposed 20hL brewhouse has a capacity of one-million litres and so cannot be considered a ‘microbrewery’.
Townsville Council imposed the condition that the microbrewery be limited to 220,000-litres per annum “to ensure the use maintains its ‘micro’ manufacturing output to protect the amenity of the surrounding residential uses”.
Lion has named its latest project Tiny Mountain Brewing after Townsville’s Castle Hill. Located in the centre of North Queensland’s largest city, Castle Hill boasts 360-degree views of the local landscape but falls metres short of a ‘mountain’ classification. Tiny Mountain Brewery pays homage to Townsville’s topography and the 286-metre pink granite structure.
A Lion spokesperson has informed Brews News that the company is not able to comment “while the matter is before the court”.