Aviation Projects was asked to assist Wiley and Co Pty Ltd in preparing a development application for a Material Change of Use for the proposed Asterion Intense Horticulture and Rural Industry Process Facility.
The Asterion Intense Horticulture and Rural Industry Process Facility (AIHRIPF) consists of multiple greenhouse modules and associated infrastructure to be developed over a project area of approximately 71.04 ha. The project area is situated within close proximity to Toowoomba Wellcamp Airport (TWA), approximately 600 m south west of the airport terminal building and approximately 15.3 km (8.2 nm) west of the town of Toowoomba in South Queensland.
The proposed AIHRIPF will comprise of greenhouse modules, perimeter security fence and other associated infrastructure including a manufacturing facility, car parking areas and a gate house.
The scope of work was to prepare a high-level pre-feasibility review of aviation aspects of the project, based on State Planning Policy outcomes applicable to strategic airports and aviation facilities, and the National Airports Safeguarding Framework (NASF).
In undertaking this task, the following activities were undertaken:
- confirmed the scope and deliverables via teleconference;
- reviewed operational airspace (Obstacle Limitation Surfaces of TWA and PANS-OPS surfaces) including physical obstructions, transient obstructions, gaseous plumes and airborne particulates;
- provided information on lighting hazards including lighting sources and reflected sunlight;
- provided information on wildlife hazards (e.g. water sources, putrescible waste, landscaping vegetation);
- provided information on public safety areas and how the proposed Project can impact these areas;
- reviewed the potential for the proposed Project to impact building restricted areas for aviation facilities;
- identified noise aspects of the proposed Project based on requirements set in NASF Guideline A, TWA Master Plan 2012 and Toowoomba Regional Planning Scheme version 19.0; and
- conducted a preliminary review in relation to building induced windshear and turbulence based on NASF Guideline B Managing the Risk of Building Generated Windshear and Turbulence at Airports.
Asterion has been granted approval to build the facility which is capable of producing up to 20,000 plants for harvest per day. The project is expected to be implemented in three stages, commencing in the last quarter of 2019. It will involve a total capital cost of around $450 million. It will also be a huge employer, with a total daily direct workforce of an estimated 800 workers, plus 300 part time and shift-based positions. It’s estimated the facility will produce 500,000 kg of medicinal cannabis product annually with an export value in excess of $1 billion. Toowoomba Wellcamp Airport and it's freight facilities will be utilised to export the product overseas.