Proposed plans for a Foodworks store, which includes a bakery, butchery and street cafe, at Baralaba.
Proposed plans for a Foodworks store, which includes a bakery, butchery and street cafe, at Baralaba.

Big development plans for sleepy Baralaba

A NEW grocery store to include a café, butchers and bakery has been proposed to be built on the site of the old railway quarters accommodation in Baralaba – the first development in the rural town in almost a decade.

The proposal has been submitted to Banana Shire Council by Tapsell Consulting Engineers of North Rockhampton on behalf of Jason Simmons.

The development would be located at 38-42 Stopford St, a 0.310 hectare site which is currently vacant land with limited vegetation and minimal turf and trees.

It was previously a historical site for a working men’s quarters that has now been decommissioned.

The commercial Foodworks retail store would have a gross floor area of 1023m2.

The proposal states it would “service the local community” as a “central hub to provide groceries, bakery and butchery services as well as a café”.

“This is an existing business in town, looking to extend and provide a resource for the local

community and mining industry,” the report states.

“We believe the growth of this business will help to attract new development to enhance and draw people to the township, for work and shopping.

“(It) creates a focus and reason for people to visit the town of Baralaba.”

The new store would replace the current Foodworks, which Mr Simmons bought from Ted and Polly Bromley two years ago.

“The building wasn’t up to scratch to have what a modern supermarket would have,” Mr Simmons said.

“We had to do something if we were going to see expansion.”

Mr Simmons said the new store was expected to employ about five extra staff, on top of the current seven staff employed at the existing Foodworks store.

The plans have been in the window of the current store and have received good feedback from the community.

If approved, it would be the first ­development in the town since Acres Rural Supplies, also owned by Mr Simmons, was built. It has been 12 months in the making and Mr Simmons hopes they will be able to start construction in the first half of next year.

The build is expected to take six months, bringing quite a large workforce to the town, boosting the economy and ­accommodation takings at the pub.

Mr Simmons said he hoped the new supermarket would attract more grey nomads who come through town to see the weir and river.

“Hopefully they stay a bit longer in town,” he said.

The store would also support the shop at Woorabinda, as Mr Simmons also owns it.

“We would service surrounding towns and farming,” he said.

The building has a maximum height of 8.5 metres, according to the building restrictions. It will be a contemporary building with a painted precast concrete tilt panel with shop front glazing and sheet cladding to overhanging awning.

The equipment and air conditioning units will be located in the north-east area of the block away from the street front and residential dwellings.

The shop has day time operation however the bakery and butchery may operate outside these hours and some deliveries may occur.

Twenty-five on street car parks exist with 13 car parks to be installed on the northern side of the building for customers and staff, including one for persons with disability.

It is said in the report the peak hour for the store would be from five to six am.

The shop would have frontage to Stopford St and there is a railway corridor to the rear with existing dwellings on either side.

The proposed development includes an upgrade to the existing road pavement and drainage with new kerb and channel, a verge with a foothpath and allotment access points.

Transport and service deliveries are to be located at the rear of the site via a one-way access driveway.

A field investigation was carried out in April by CQ Soil Testing for investigations and design for on-site sewerage facility.

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