Minister to negotiate lease of Crown land for KI Links golf resort

THE PLAN: The new plan for crown land and coastal reserve for the proposed KI Links golf resort near Pelican Lagoon on Kangaroo Island.

THE PLAN: The new plan for crown land and coastal reserve for the proposed KI Links golf resort near Pelican Lagoon on Kangaroo Island.

The SA Government has come up with a plan that could allow the proposed KI Links golf resort to go ahead.

State Environment Minister David Speirs has decided to retain a 50-metre-wide waterfront coastal reserve to allow ongoing public access to the clifftop, and negotiate a lease with golf course developer for the non-waterfront sections of the land.

The Islander broke the news earlier this month that the minister was reconsidering the lease arrangements.

“The State Government has ruled out selling this prime waterfront section of Kangaroo Island’s coastline and has struck a deal that preserves the viability of this $14 million proposal,” Mr Speirs said.

“This is a very important project for Kangaroo Island’s economy and tourism offering which will create 60 jobs during construction and more than 30 full-time ongoing jobs once complete.

“The State Government has listened closely to the concerns of the Kangaroo Island community.

“That’s why we will retain a waterfront coastal reserve to allow ongoing public access to the clifftop, and negotiate a lease with golf course developer for the non-waterfront sections of the land, which is about 20 kilometres from Kingscote.

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“A section of the land will be subdivided to create a coastal reserve that is approximately 50 metres wide, and we will now begin negotiations to lease the balance of the three parcels of land to KI Links.

“KI Links has also reached an agreement with SA Water to fund the installation of 35km of water pipeline that will connect Kingscote to the Dudley Peninsula and allow for other parties to connect into that important infrastructure.

“The golf course development will also be dependent on a number of other regulatory conditions to ensure cultural heritage, native vegetation and threatened wildlife are protected, and criteria relating to appropriate land and water management will also have to be met.

“This decision in no way pre-empts the development assessment process, which is currently underway.

“We have given careful consideration to community feeling and the requirements under the Crown Land Management Act, and assessed that this project is of value to the regional economy of Kangaroo Island and the wider South Australian community.”

COASTAL RESERVE: A coastal reserve that is approximately 50 metres wide will be created along the clifftops in front of the proposed golf resort at Pennington Bay, Kangaroo Island.

COASTAL RESERVE: A coastal reserve that is approximately 50 metres wide will be created along the clifftops in front of the proposed golf resort at Pennington Bay, Kangaroo Island.

Questions and answers:

Q. What arrangements have been approved for the use of Crown land for the proposed Kangaroo Island golf course?

A. The State Government has decided not to sell any land for the proposed golf course. Instead, the State Government has agreed to negotiate a lease to KI Links Pty Ltd over the Crown land perpetual lease (Allotment 2 DP 76540), the landward portion of section 507 Hundred of Dudley and the eastern portion of Section 463 Hundred of Dudley. (Refer to map)

A combination of conditions in the Crown lease, development approval requirements, land management agreements and regulatory processes will be used to protect the threatened species and provide for appropriate land management on the site.

Some boundaries will be realigned to minimise the amount of land subject to the lease and ensure the golf course development is not on waterfront land. This will maintain public ownership and access.

Q. What are the lease terms and conditions?

A. The precise lease conditions will be negotiated with developers, KI Links Pty Ltd under the requirements of the Crown Land Management Act.  

The use of the land will be restricted to the golf resort and associated activities as approved by the development approval, and as outlined in the terms and conditions of the lease.

A combination of conditions in the Crown lease, development approval requirements, land management agreements and regulatory processes will be used to protect the threatened species and provide for appropriate land management on the site.

The negotiation of the lease is commercial in confidence between the State Government and the developer, KI Links Pty Ltd.  

No land will be sold to the developers of KI Links Pty Ltd. 

Q. Will the golf course definitely go ahead now?

A. The State Government has agreed to enter into negotiations over the three parcels of  land.  

This in no way pre-empts the development assessment process being undertaken by the Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure (DPTI).  KI Links Pty Ltd will continue to fulfil the conditions of the development approval.  DPTI, in conjunction with the Department for Environment and Water (DEW and other relevant agencies will assess the completion of the conditions of development approval.

Q. Will public access be maintained to the coastal land?

A. Yes. A strip of Crown land approximately 50m wide along the waterfront will be retained as a waterfront coastal reserve, providing ongoing public access to the coastline.  

Q. How will threatened species of flora and fauna be protected and the land managed appropriately?

A. The golf course developer must satisfy strict conditons prior to approval being given for the development. The developer is required to complete the following plans as part of the development approval: 

  • a sand drift, erosion and cliff stability investigation 
  • a cultural heritage management plan 
  • a construction environmental management and monitoring plan 
  • an integrated water management plan, 
  • a native vegetation management rehabilitation and revegetation plan
  • an operational environmental management monitoring plan. 

Q. Does this set a precedent for the sale or lease of waterfront land? 

A. No. Each case is assessed on its merits and this will not change. In this case the waterfront land will remain as unalienated Crown land.

Q. Is there still potential for cultural heritage to be negatively affected?

A. KI Links Pty Ltd has altered its masterplan to minimise the impacts on known cultural heritage sites. Any cultural heritage issues that arise during construction will be handled as outlined in the cultural heritage management plan required under the development approval. 

Q. Why has this decision been made? 

A. Taking community feedback into account, KI Links Pty Ltd has redrafted its plans to include changes including:

  • shifting of some greens to lessen cultural heritage impacts
  • reducing the impact on high quality vegetation and a cultural heritage area 
  • reducing the required access to waterfront land and 
  • adjusting the holes to be further away from the cliff edge. 

Careful consideration has been given to community feedback and the requirements of the Crown Land Management Act.

The Minsiter has assessed that this project is of value to the regional economy of Kangaroo Island and the state as a whole.  The requirements placed on the development will be sufficient to mitigate impacts relating to threatened species, environment protection, cultural heritage and land management. 

This decision does not pre-empt the development assessment process, which is being managed by the Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure.

This decision relates only to agreeing to negotiate a lease over the land for the purposes of the golf resort.

Q. Where will water for the golf course come from and how will KI’s water resources be protected?

A. The developers are required to develop an integrated water management plan as part of the development approval. The developers are working closely with SA Water on the access and supply of water to the site.

Q. What happens next?

A. DEW will negotiate the lease with KI Links Pty Ltd.

KI Links Pty Ltd will continue to work with the Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure and other agencies to fulfil the conditions of the development approval. 

Q. How do I find out more? 

For more information about Crown Land tenure please contact email DEWCrownLandsFeedback@sa.gov.au

For more information about the development approval please email: simon.neldner@sa.gov.au at the Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure. 

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