Pottsville caravan park proposal refused – The Echo

Pottsville caravan park proposal refused – The Echo

 

Caravan park proposal for 112 long-term sites, reception, managers residence and pool at 1126 Pottsville Road, Pottsville. Google maps

A proposal for 112 long-term residential sites on a restrained and environmentally sensitive site in Pottsville was refused at yesterday’s Tweed Shire Council (TSC) meeting. 

Staff recommended refusal based on numerous issues including the ecological value of the site, tree removal, proximity to coastal wetlands, impact on koala habitat and sewerage. 

319 objections

Mayor Chris Cherry (Independent) moved an amendment to the staff refusal and recommended that TSC defend the Class 1 Appeal in the Land and Environment Court (L&EC).

‘I strongly support staff recommendation here,’ Cr Cherry told the meeting.

‘We’ve got a proposal before us for 112 sites in a site that contains a lot of pretty precious wetland vegetation, it is a flood-prone site and a bushfire-prone site as well.

‘It is was also raised that it may be a prohibited land use. It is not in the public interest. We have 320 submissions on this item and 319 are objecting to it. 

Class 1 Action to be defended in L&EC.

‘One of the major concerns raised in the report is the lack of sewerage capacity that is available for this development. When we combine all of these things… I think we really need to stand firm on this and defend it in the Land and Environment Court (L&EC). 

‘I think it is a really big issue for Pottsville if this one goes ahead.’

The staff report also highlighted the fact that ‘It is unclear how many sites are intended to be occupied by caravans and how many are intended to be occupied by manufactured homes, moveable dwellings or the like. This has not been nominated in the submission material.’

Significant impact on environmentally sensitive areas

The report also emphasised the DAs lack of detail stating that the design plans and other documents indicated that ‘ sites will be occupied by structures other than caravans’ and for ‘this reason, Council should consider the possibility of all sites, or a high proportion being occupied by more permanent structures such as manufactured homes.’ 

Councillor Dr Nola Firth (Greens) pointed out that ‘We are looking at the removal of 80 and possibly more with the bushfire management. 26 sites within the prohibited wetlands area. The whole area is in the kolala plan of management and the koala corridor. There is whole litany of extreme things that are being proposed here. I am strongly in favour of making sure that such a precedent never happens here.’

This was backed up by the staff report that stated:

‘The site is ecologically significant with a number of large mature native trees present across the site including Koala feed trees within the proposed development footprint. A large portion of the site accommodates important coastal wetlands where a variety of plant and animal species reside. This area is densely vegetated. The development is proposed to be setback approximately 10m from important coastal wetlands, which is not considered acceptable.’

Councillor Meredith Dennis (Independent) also highted the strong community opposition to the DA. 

‘I am on the koala committee and they have expressed a great deal of distress with this upcoming development. We do really need to protect the coastal wetlands and the environment for the koalas. The fact we have had so many objections demonstrates how strongly the community feels on this issue.’ 

All councillors voted in favour of rejecting the development application and defending it in the L&EC.

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