Australia

Puma2Gos small win in Dunsborough fight

The battle to stop a Puma petrol station development in the centre of Dunsborough has received a surprise boost, after the State Solicitors Office applied to the Court of Appeal to overturn a Supreme Court green light for the project.

More than 130 residents cheered and clapped the announcement at a so-called 'unhappy hour' at Clancy's Fish Pub on July 27.

Many pulled cash from their pockets to fund the on-going public relations campaign.

The latest legal move to block the petrol station has been welcomed by the lobby group Puma2Go, which is ramping up its public relations efforts to get the proposed development moved out to the light industrial area.

"This legal challenge has renewed our hope that sanity will prevail," a Puma2Go spokesperson said.

"But we're not pinning everything on the Court of Appeal."

They said the group was about to launch a state-wide advertising campaign aimed at keeping the 24-hour convenience store and petrol station out of the town's centre.

The Southern Joint Development Assessment Panel rejected the Puma Energy outlet on Dunn Bay Road last year but developers appealed to the State Administrative Tribunal and it was approved in August 2017.

Earlier this year, a Supreme Court judge denied an appeal against decisions by the State Administrative Tribunal to allow the development to go ahead.

The battle has raged for more than two years, beginning with protest marches by hundreds of residents through the town.

The appeal to overturn the Supreme Court's judgement is expected to be heard by three judges, but there's no indication when it will be heard.

"We'd be delighted if this development was tied up in legal moves, fencing wire and gaffer tape for years to come," the spokesperson said.

"But hopefully, Puma will begin to see some sense in not alienating the community in which they hope to do business, and look for other sites outside of the town centre.

“If they win, and the project goes ahead, they'll find at least half the town will boycott the business."

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Margaret River Mail

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