‘Rebirth’ sale of Grantham Quarry
The controversial Grantham Quarry - the backdrop to some high-profile legal action in the wake of the 2011 flood - is on the market.
But the sales pitch is all about its fertile future as part of the Lockyer Valley food bowl rather than digging up the past.
The wall of the derelict quarry 100km west of Brisbane was breached at the height of the devastating 2011 flood in which 12 people died.
Its former owners, Toowoomba's Wagner brothers, have won defamation cases and been awarded substantial payouts for comments and reports by radio broadcaster Alan Jones and Nine Network's 60 Minutes over incorrect accusations and insinuations.
A commission of inquiry found the breaching the quarry wall had no exacerbating role in the fatal flood.
The quarry changed hands three months after the flood and again in 2015.
Its existing owner, locally-based concrete and quarries firm Zanows, is selling the 79ha site after extensive remediation works with a view to its "rebirth" as an agribusiness asset.
"After almost three years of rehabilitation, working closely with the community and council for the best outcome, the property is now ready for a new life," said Zanows boss Steve Pyne.
As part of the marketing campaign, the property has been rebranded as the "Lockyer Agri Centre" reflecting the future vision for the holding.
Scan Property Consultants' Matthew Richards, who is handling the sale, said the site had "untapped opportunity" for large-scale intensive agribusiness ventures - such as aquaculture, vertical farming, horticulture and feedlotting - providing jobs and investment into the area.
Mr Richards said the property has an abundance of valuable water resource for intensive food production operations.
"It's former resource was sand and gravel but it's new resource value proposition is its bulk water … an increasingly scarce and valuable commodity," he said.
Former owner, John Wagner, said he was glad to see the property being transformed.
"And we hope to be an indirect part of its ongoing success in product distribution through the Wellcamp Airport," he said.
Property records show Zanows bought the site in 2015 for $825,000 from Boral Resources, which purchased it in 2011 for $1 million from the Wagners.