Maleny Voice


Inappropriate Development Trashed a Platypus Habitat
Obi Obi Creek Riparian Zone - Maleny Queensland Australia

This website provides loads of information and many photographs to raise awareness of an inappropriate commercial development which took place on the eastern bank of Obi Obi Creek in the small Sunshine Coast Hinterland town of Maleny, in Queensland, Australia. Original property developers Cornerstone Properties Ltd and subsequent property developers Uniton Pty Ltd, against the wishes of our town, erected a concrete box supermarket for Woolworths Ltd - one of the most agressive and expansionistic retail grocery companies on the planet. See the menu items on the left to navigate this site.

We have made available a range of short videos which convey the events and some of the issues involved quite well, and show how other towns are dealing with Woolworths in their own way...

The Bunya Street site was totally unsuited for such a large scale development, is situated in a known traffic bottleneck, was an area defined as being best left as open space, and was developed in clear opposition to the majority of the people of Maleny. What is more, the developer knowingly trashed a dense and active network of platypus burrows on the bank of Obi Obi Creek and got away with it when the regulators turned a convenient blind eye. The developers displayed no regard for our native wildlife, and no regard for the people of Maleny. Construction upon this site diminished a ribbon of green running through the town of Maleny. We are not letting them get away with it - many longer term residents of Maleny boycott the Woolworths store to this day. We are educating newly arrived residents as well.

What happened in Maleny clearly showed that Woolworths is a company that puts the profits of its shareholders well and truely above anything else - including inflicting untold misery onto problem gamblers. Ruthless business practices, bullying smaller competitors, and screwing suppliers through massive buying power pressure makes this company an unpleasant intrusion into our small community. Many other small towns in Australia feel the same way.

Former Queensland Premier Peter Beattie said on ABC radio that he would have preferred the supermarket not to have gone ahead: "I don't think it's doing them much corporate good," Mr Beattie said.

Former Australian Prime Minister John Howard during the opening of a Woolworths support office in Sydney on 23 February 2006 said: "It is important that companies like Woolworths do well and make good profits  because if they make good profits they not only satisfy their shareholders, but most importantly they can provide an ever growing number of secure, well paid jobs for the people who work for them" ...
... and forget that such greedy profit chasing rips the heart out of small communities, undermines local business, desecrates environmental values and snatches those profits from communities while putting nothing back. Oh yes. Let's hear it for Woolworths...

We have provided here a range of information which tells the story of what happened here in Maleny in 2003 to 2006. Resources and background material is provided to aid those facing a similar struggle elsewhere. Excellent articles, opinion pieces and social commentaries are also made available here. We have created a campaign resource DVD-ROM which has been distributed around Maleny.