Monday, 10 December 2018

Volunteer's Lunch 20/12/18@ Progress hall at noon

All CPPA volunteers are warmly invited to an end of year lunch on Thursday 20/12/18 at Progress Hall at noon. 

RSVP essential by 17/12/18 to or ring/sms 0438596741
On behalf of the Coal Point Progress Association best wishes to all for a festive season full of familial friendship and happy times. 

On behalf of the Coal Point Progress Association best wishes to all for a festive season full of familial friendship and happy times.

What a year!

It’s been a big year for the CPPA with the completion of the 6-year Threatened Species project, an Art & Craft Show, a new grant for energy efficiencies at the Hall along with joining forces with other community groups to raise awareness about and prevent a 4-6 storey development on public land at Bath Street.

The Bath St proposal has been a real eye-opener for what happens when the community
doesn’t see eye-to-eye with council proposals and the majority of elected representatives don’t seem to be supporting the community viewpoint.

Since the tabling of the 5295 signature petition in late October the following actions have been undertaken and information obtained:

  • A comprehensive submission was compiled and delivered to all councillors and key council staff detailing inconsistencies with local and state planning instruments. 
  • TFPG lodged requests for information from Council on documentation deemed ‘commercial in confidence’ relating to environmental constraints, heritage, traffic, architectural drawings and feasibility results. The Information & Privacy Commission have stated that Council’s decisions to withhold the information were not justified and have recommended council make a new decision. Council have declined to release the information sought either until the DA is lodged or not at all. 
  • Council has produced a summary of the community engagement from the Toronto
    Foreshore Masterplan. The document reiterates council’s intention to build and has a strong flavour of community opposition to that proposal. 
  • A meeting was called by the Mayor with Clr Pauling and representatives of the TFPG in attendance to investigate how trust could be re-established with the community and to identify areas where cooperation and collaboration could be undertaken. At the meeting 
    • The Mayor extended an invitation to TFPG to meet with councillors and consultants in the new year 
    • TFPG representatives suggested Council investigate other landholdings in the Toronto CBD such as the 1500m2 holding on the corner of Pemell St and Brighton Ave or their landholdings between the Aldi Carpark and the Anglican church 
    • TFPG suggested partnership options with the RMYC be explored. 
The CPPA is a member of the Toronto Foreshore Protection Group (TFPG) and by including updates in The Chronicle has played an important role in keeping the community informed of the proposed Bath St development.

The CPPA has agreed to continue to support the TFPG by offering space in the newsletter for updates. The TFPG is hoping to extend the delivery area of the Chronicle to Kilaben Bay and Toronto to aid dissemination of information whilst the Bath Street issue is unresolved. To extend the delivery requires additional funds to cover the cost of printing and walking volunteers to letterbox the newsletter. If you can assist with either of these actions visit the ‘Volunteer’ or ‘Donate’ tabs on the website.

Want to join up or's the time

The CPPA has been a strong advocate for our community since its inception in 1946. In the early days land was purchased and a hall built for a community meeting space, then there was advocacy for roads, equitable rates and community services such as footpaths. The most recent era has seen the protection and preservation of the natural assets take priority, the hall refurbished and upgraded, a continuous community watch to retain the community character and prevent overdevelopment and collaboration with sustainable neighbourhood initiatives…including footpaths.

The CPPA is just as relevant now as 72 years ago, providing a unified community voice advocating on issues that impact on where and how we live whilst providing community services through landcaring, maintaining the community owned hall, community advocacy and awareness via The Chronicle.

It’s time to renew...CPPA membership runs with calendar year, here is your membership renewal form and in an effort to optimise efficiency we are offering 5-year memberships.

Member's Morning 23/2/19

On Saturday February 23rd from 8:30am-12:30pm we will be hosting a member’s morning at the hall providing an opportunity to pay your membership fees or join up, find out what projects we’ll be pursuing in 2019, talk to our local experts about our energy efficiency and landcare projects, purchase a discount native plant and enjoy a BBQ.

A new project we are hoping to start in 2019 is a series of super social soirées. These friendly community gatherings at the hall could include music, performance, games, food…anything the yet–to-form social subcommittee would like to organise. Would you like to be on the social subcommittee? Do you have any ideas for a soirée? Come along to the member’s morning and have a chat.

AGM notice

The AGM will be held on 11/3/19 where the plans for the year will be put forward.

Climate Action Pledge

The CPPA has been awarded a $16,198 Community Building Partnership grant to
implement Sustainable Solutions for Progress Hall Stage2-Excellence in Energy Efficiency. 

This exciting project will capitalise on the energy being generated by our solar panels, which have generated 5.41 MWh of power this year. The energy efficiency will also benefit our regular hall users and support our efforts to have social activities at the hall in the new year and most importantly it will help us to do our bit to address the causes of climate change.

Doing something to tackle climate change is a big issue and we will only succeed if everyone together does their bit. Every climate action that we take, no matter how insignificant it may seem, matters a lot when a lot of people do them.

Sir David Attenborough’s recent plea to leaders at the UN was clear.

“If we don’t take action the collapse of our civilisations and the extinction of much of the natural world is on the horizon.”

The Australian Climate Council offer these tips from their ‘What can I do toolkit’ 
  • Call your MP to share your support for strong policies that support renewable energy solutions 
  • Install rooftop solar and take back control of your power bills. 
  • Change the way you travel and think about opportunities to catch public transport, cycle or walk instead. 
  • Move your money so it doesn’t support the fossil fuel industry. 
The Climate Council also provides BBQ guides for talking about the various climate change issues recognising that it can be a difficult conversation. 

Neighbours noticing nature

Have you seen the White Headed Pigeons? 

Rod Mackay: “Positive sighting of a pair of White-headed Pigeons this afternoon (3/12/18) on an electrical wire at the Carey Bay Wetlands. They are probably breeding down here somewhere. I saw some a few years ago down near the pool at Toronto west , and have seen some further up the coast; but these two are a first for me this side of Ambrose St.

I also saw four Long-Billed Corellas last Friday on the Toronto Golf Course- now they are a long way from home judging by my bird book at least!: R

Bee in the moment

Coal Point Public School has been successfully awarded an Environmental Sustainability grant from Lake Macquarie City Council. The funds will be

The school appreciates the guidance and support of Coal Point Progress Association and Coal Point Landcare during the grant application process. 

used towards a native bee sanctuary. A native bee hive has recently been installed by bee expert Tobias Smith who also conducted a workshop with year 5 students at the school. This was followed up with a 'Bee Happy’ day with students encouraged to dress to the theme and workshop information shared via peer support groups. The grant funds will also be put towards rehabilitation and establishment of gardens throughout the school, installation of a water tank and garden consumables and equipment.

Help Save Our Limited Foreshore Parkland

The Toronto Foreshore Protection Group is working hard to keep building our campaign to save the foreshore from a multi-story development on the Bath St site.

We need as many of the community as possible to engage with this campaign in practical ways.
Our ongoing strategy will involve:
  • Doubling the distribution of The Chronicle 
  • Printing flyers, post cards, posters, banners, documents 
  • Hiring venues for public meetings and letter writing sessions 
  • Newspaper ads 
  • Fees for such things as document searches and freedom of information requests 

All of these things require funds. We rely solely on the generosity and goodwill of the people of Western Lake Macquarie.

You can help by donating on our website

Community Activated To Save Its Foreshore

Everywhere people are becoming increasingly outraged at the way in which councils are making decisions in spite of the clearly demonstrated wishes of their communities.

The people of Toronto and indeed Western Lake Macquarie have every right to feel deeply offended by the way in which Council are treating their efforts to save waterfront land at Bath Street opposite the Royal Motor Yacht Club for improvement as open public space.

At the 29/10/18 Council meeting, a packed gallery of local people were insulted by the treatment that Councillor Wendy Harrison received when she moved a motion to bring the tabling of their petition to the front of the agenda, the usual practice when the public attend to support a petition. When the motion was put, the Mayor declared in favour of a NO vote, with no count taken. The Toronto community were not afforded the courtesy that is the usual practice in these circumstances. It suited Council that night to follow the rule book

The contempt for our case against Council’s proposed development was on full display:
  • in the treatment Councillor Harrison received especially when she attempted to speak briefly to the contents of the petition, 
  • in people from our community having to sit through a full agenda of Council business for over 90 minutes in what appeared to be, at times, a “work to regulations” pattern, 
  • in the deliberately ironic question being put to Suzanne Pritchard, in response to her presentation, around whether there have been any threatened or endangered species found on the Bath St site. 
Over 5,200 people signed a petition of protest; over 450 turned out to a public meeting. People from our community packed the gallery at the Council meeting on October 29th.

The people of Toronto will not be treated as a few vocal seniors who don’t like change, or as being anti- development. The people pushing back against this development are informed, loyal to their lake and progressive in their concern for the environment. Far from being regressive and resistant to change, they are thinking ahead of the Council who is meant to represent them and protect their environment.

The people of Toronto are thinking of protecting open spaces for posterity. They accept that towns grow, that multi-story living is environmentally sound and importantly that the protection of public open spaces in relation to the placement of those buildings is a very high priority.

Council have a couple of favourite buzz words: Activate and bookend. Apparently, the multi-story proposal is a “bookend” to the foreshore. We say to Council, activate the Bath Street site into open green public recreational space. It will bring the people and events. We see this model working on the Eastern side of the lake. Put your bookend somewhere else where it won’t deny our community and its visitors yet another 10% of its already limited public foreshore space. There are some decisions that trump the pragmatism of profit.

At that unpleasant Council meeting referred to earlier in this article, each Councillor was given a lengthy and very well researched submission detailing the Toronto Foreshore Protection Group’s opposition to the proposal, prepared on behalf of the Group by Nico Marcar.

We have yet to have any response from any Councillor indicating that the submission has been read. This submission now appears on the website, along with the petition which can still be signed.

The Council is hoping that this will all just go away. This is not what many of you want. Keep up those emails to the councillors. Keep those letters appearing in the Newcastle Herald and Lakes Mail.

We are not the poor cousins of Lake Macquarie and we will not be treated as such.

Oh, and yes, to the Councillor who posed that deliberately ironic question, there is a threatened species on that foreshore land in Bath St: it’s called the community.

Local Artist recognised

Hugh Cross recently won the Watercolour Award at the Royal Art Society of NSW’s annual Student Exhibition. 

The painting was created under the guidance of John Haycraft, a terrific watercolour tutor.

Hugh has a facebook page if you'd like to see what he gets up to.

Squirrel Glider Search Success

The 2nd combined Hunter Intrepid Landcare and CPPA Squirrel Glider nest box monitoring session held in November was highly successful.

Eight participants checked 12 nesting boxes positioned in various places along the West Ridge. Each box had its identification number, location and attachment confirmed (2 boxes were relocated) and was checked for evidence of habitation and whether a leaf litter nest was present (this indicates the boxes are being used).

Some of the participants had never viewed Squirrel gliders up close and personal, with three of the boxes occupied it was a perfect opportunity to view the adorable cuteness of our threatened species!

Although this year’s glider count of 12 was down from 15 viewed last year, the real positive was that all the nest boxes checked contained evidence of glider use, whether is was a leaf nest or a residence. There was only one nestbox the Squirrel gliders weren’t using, it had been adopted by European Honey bees, who had filled the box to the brim with honeycomb.

All up, the event ran for about 4 hours, culminating in a light lunch at the hall and jovial conversation after the monitoring was completed with everyone keen to catch up again next year.

Thursday, 25 October 2018

Foreshore petition to be presented on 29/10/18

Councillor Wendy Harrison will present the Toronto Foreshore Protection Group’s (TFPG) petition of 5157 signatures to Councillors on Monday 29th October. The petition is objecting to Council’s proposal for a multi-storey development on public land at Bath Street and seeking reclassification of the land to community parkland.

The TFPG is urging the community to attend the council meeting at 6:30pm to emphasise their support for the petition’s intent. Councillors and staff will be meeting within the next fortnight to discuss the Bath St site and the outcomes of the community consultation process.

Since April this year the TFPG has been collecting signatures at markets and events with
Nico Marcar finalising the petition
many local businesses also providing opportunities to sign. It’s been an amazing show of community support to protect the foreshore land at Bath Street from overdevelopment.

The TFPG have been rigorous about checking the validity of signatures trying to remove duplicate or erroneous entries, and even with a small margin for unforeseen errors it’s still over 5000 rate payers whose preferences are not being considered by the majority of Councillors.

Along with the petition, a submission will be delivered to Councillors detailing the history of the site, the actions of the TFPG and the issues around progressing the Bath St Development Application. The intent is to provide Councillors and Council staff with a detailed report of the group’s understanding of Council’s proposal to allay their concerns that the group is misinformed and to also provide positive recommendations.

The online petition provided an opportunity for people to post a comment, 194 people did!

Julie “We have so little foreshore in Toronto, please keep what little we have for our community to enjoy”

Richard “The proximity of this site to the foreshore makes it unsuitable for high-rise development. Council’s should be focused on long-term community needs, such as providing and safeguarding public spaces, rather than being proponents of commercially driven developments that remove public spaces. This site should be community land.”

Annette “Foreshore land is so scarce and special for everyone. No way I say”

Robert “Public land means public land”

Michele “I believe that there should be as much open space near the waterfront as possible so that everyone can use it. I don’t believe that our council should be ‘investors ‘ , that is not its role.”

Nigel “If the local community doesn’t want it, don’t build it!”

Natalia “The foreshore and parkland are very important part of the surrounding communities, don’t get rid of public space just to bring in more people! The area is already growing rapidly and they don’t have enough public space to go around as it is, there will only be MORE need for public space if more people come live in the area. If you develop an area, please develop responsibly, not stupidly.”

CPPA to speak at LMCC’s Public Forum on 29/10/18

Suzanne Pritchard will be speaking at the Public Forum at Council Chambers on Monday 29/10/18 at 5:30pm sharing the outcomes of the Threatened Species project, thoughts on
the Lakemac 2050 Strategy and  ideas to unify the environmental assets of the Toronto community. The address that was delivered is here.

Annual Squirrel Glider Nestbox survey

Hunter Intrepid Landcare and the CPPA will be teaming up for Squirrel Glider Surveying
Delight on the Saturday 3rd of November from 10am.

We’ll begin the morning, heading out onto the idyllic West Ridge of Coal Point to survey the presence of the Vulnerable Squirrel Glider (Petaurus norfolcensis) in nest boxes, as well as moving and replacing unused boxes to other spots within the reserve, before breaking for lunch and finishing up.

This event is at no cost. Lunch is provided.  


9:50am - begin arriving at the Progress Hall, 197 Skye Point Road, Coal Point – park at
Gurranba reserve. Landcare banners will be flying at the parking area. WHS induction

10:15am - car pool to Whitelocke St West Ridge Reserve entrance. From there we’ll survey the boxes containing previous evidence of Squirrel Glider activity, and move any disused boxes around the West Ridge Reserve.

1:00pm - begin carpooling back to the progress hall for lunch platters from Woolworths, and finish.

Requirements:: Long pants, hat, good sturdy shoes, drink bottle, keenness.

Please RSVP to Suzanne, so we know how many people are coming and for catering.

Another year of TASNG activity!

The Chair’s report – Nico Marcar

The Toronto Area Sustainable Neighbourhood Group held their AGM in October.

Once again TASNG has had a successful year thanks to the dedicated work of our committee, project leaders, members and friends. We maintain our broad focus in three areas: Recycling & Waste Management, Cycling & Pedestrian and Landcare. We maintain strong links with the Coal Point Progress Association (CPPA). The Chair acted as Treasurer in 2018.

This year we initiated a Repair Cafe project, in collaboration with Warners Bay SNG, the Boolaroo Women’s Shed and Upcycling Newcastle. Credit goes to Stephen Dewar, Lois Simpson and Cathy Stewart (Warners Bay SNG) for spearheading this project and successfully obtaining a Council Environmental Sustainability Grant. Two repair cafes have been held so far in Toronto and two in Warners Bay. Activities have included repairs to clothing, basic bicycle maintenance/repairs/checks and sharpening of garden hand tools.

Since developing plans in late 2017 for beautification of the entry into western Toronto with a native plant garden on Awaba Road, we now have sign off from Council, RMS and other agencies. We have received generous funding support from Centennial Coal, Origin Energy, the Toronto District Garden Club and Bunnings. Construction will commence shortly.

In April TASNG joined other community groups (CPPA, RMYC and Rotary Sunrise) to form a Toronto Foreshore Protection Group (TFPG) coalition to halt Council’s plans for a multi-storey development on Toronto’s foreshore at Bath Street, next to the RMYC. Numerous discussions and meetings with Councillors and Council staff have occurred. The TFPG organised a successful public meeting in September attended by over 450 people. A submission along with over 5000 petition signatures will be presented to Council.

With the CPPA, we continue to monitor DA applications in the area and work with residents to voice concerns over excessive development. It was very pleasing that our efforts were rewarded when the NSW Land & Environment Court rejected the development proposal at 2 Brighton Ave. Unfortunately, we were unable to stop Council’s acceptance of the excessive height of the 37 unit, non-compliant development at 151-155 Brighton Ave.

With the Alliance, we continue to be a strong voice for the abolition of single-use plastic bags locally and throughout NSW, engaging with businesses and supermarket chains in Toronto and other Lake Macquarie towns. With the Five Bays and other SNGs, ‘swap bag’ stations have been set up as well as lobbying of Cafes to use recyclable take away coffee cups. We again took part in Clean Up Australia day.

We continue our active campaign to develop a shared pathway between Kilaben Bay and Rathmines, with support from the Rathmines SNG, and have placed this issue, along with the need for other cycle path connections, with Council’s Active Transport Advisory group.

We are mindful of the need to engage more with residents of Kilaben Bay and Toronto. With Council, Disability Links, Five Bays SNG and others we have now organised two, well attended (100-150 people) community picnics on the Toronto Foreshore (Nov ‘17 and Feb ‘18) and a conversation cafe at the Toronto Library. Our next picnic is to be held in November.

Staying Engaged (TFPG)- Linda Ireland

If that title has caught your eye you probably think this is an article about marriage. Sorry. It’s not. Well not exactly. It’s about a separation. Only in this case the separation isn’t between a couple. It’s between the constituent and the politician. It’s what we might better term “disengagement”.

Most separations are fraught. There’s bitterness, resentment, name calling, accusations of unfairness, divided loyalties, an unconcealed regret at having chosen that party and trusted that person with the big decisions affecting your life. Then there’s the loss of trust.

When people lose trust, cynicism sets in. You hear expressions like,

” Those pollies are only in it for themselves.”

“They’re all as bad as each other.”

“Why bother voting. Nothing’s going to change.”

Expressions like these are symptomatic of political disengagement. It is unsurprising that so many Australians feel this way, given the goings on in politics in recent years. The problem is, being disengaged is a luxury which our democracy cannot afford. Take the 18 year old who shrugs their shoulders and expresses no interest in their first chance to vote. Disengagement has already set in before the first vote is placed. If it leads to inaction, nothing ever changes.

A robust democracy requires that all citizens of voting age make informed decisions at the ballot box. What a robust democracy we would have if we all made our representatives more accountable for the decisions they make on our behalf. How many of us take the time to write to a politician or a newspaper or online forum expressing our concern at government inaction or inappropriate actions?

Decisions are made regularly at a local, state and national level. These have impacts on our lives and the environment in which we live. We sometimes get mad about these decisions and feel frustrated and helpless. We express our outrage at the club or across the dinner table, but not enough of us convert outrage into action.

Political engagement starts at the local level.

At the moment we are seeing a group of local citizens expressing concern about Lake Macquarie City Council’s decisions around multi-story buildings on the foreshore. These people see something which they think is not in the best interests of the community or its foreshore and are actively engaged in fighting for this community. They see the loss of potential recreational space and the setting of precedents for such buildings around a foreshore whose special appeal is the very absence of such high-rise buildings, as issues worth getting involved in. They are urging those in the community who share their concerns to become actively involved through emails and phone calls to local councillors. A recent meeting of well over 400 people suggests there is the will in the community.

It is so important to find time to stay politically engaged in the midst of our busy lives. If we take the time to find out about candidates standing in our electorates and what they stand for, if we take the time to make those we vote for accountable for the decisions they make, then we are playing our part as engaged members of our Australian society both at a local community and broader level. Now that’s an engagement worth celebrating!

Ultimately, who is responsible for the kind of society that we have and the legacy we leave for future generations?

Keep a lookout for your trees!

A neighbour’s experience

In late September someone was out and about poisoning large trees in the Coal Point
area. Directly opposite the Progress Hall at No. 292-294 Skye Pt Road two large, 150 year old gum trees were deliberately poisoned via having large holes drilled in the base and Glyphosate poured in. Grass around the base of both trees was also killed. Council was informed but did not respond. The trees have already lost their canopies and look lost, what is not understood is how an ‘Arborist’ had attended unannounced and decided that at least one should be removed, without speaking to the owners.

As the owners we are determined to ensure the perpetrator/s cannot gain or profit from their bad deeds and the tree is not felled, it will be utilised as a Registered Hollow with the Sydney Botanical Gardens (as have a few other Hollows nearby) for study. The trees may have to be trimmed of some outer limbs for safety’s sake but the main trunk and ‘stumpy’ hollowed limbs should last a very long time. There is a sign on the tree, denoting that it is classed as ‘Significant’.

The owners tried a remedy from the Marrickville Community Tree Watch website for saving poisoned Gum Trees, watering in quantities of sugar around the drip line and trunk in an effort to save the only green limb on the lower part of the tree. Hopefully the rain assisted too, fingers crossed.

The incident has been reported to the Police and it is being recorded as Malicious Damage. If you saw anyone in the vicinity of the tree please report it to the police. 

What does it mean for us all…

Our leafy suburb provides a refuge not only for local wildlife but also as a beautiful place
to live; mental health benefits from being around greenery are well documented.

Trees also provide additional value as air conditioners, providing shade but they also protect surfaces such as paintwork, asphalt roads and footpaths from deterioration.

Trees are personal and community assets; by maintaining and protecting old trees we are increasing their value and that of the community. Trees add thousands of dollars to property value and you only have to look at the expensive suburbs of Sydney and they have one thing in common…big trees.

The value of trees also lies in their capacity to store carbon and with the recent IPCC report reiterating that global temperatures have been rising rapidly posing grave risks for humanity, every tree is part of the insurance policy protecting our planet.

Climate change is very real and very present. The CPPA President recently attended the Society of Ecological Restoration conference to present the findings from the Threatened Species project and it was very clear and reiterated throughout the event that climate change is here and not something in the future.

Tein McDonald - “Reversing climate change is mission critical but so is protecting and restoring biodiversity”

Bruce Pascoe “Don’t despair otherwise you are condemning the next generation, we must have hope, keep working and encourage the rest of the world"

By striving to maintain the integrity of our bushland suburb we are doing our bit, one tree at a time.

DAs In Play

DA419/2018 114-120 Cary St (next to Mcdonald’s) 

124 Dwellings, 2,872m commercial space, 293 parking spaces

The Hunter and Central Coast Regional Planning Panel met for 30 minutes on 30/8/18 . Key issues discussed included:
  • Site and surrounding uses and buildings, including heritage items, SEPP 14 and bushland. 
  • Height non-compliance (3 height controls, 10, 13, 16m), significant non-compliance will need very careful consideration and justification 
  • Clause 4.6 and visual impacts, whether Planning Proposal warranted 
  • No Floor Space Ratio control 
  • Separate access for commercial/residential, RMS views to come 
  • Rear Road widening – not reserved, though desired by Council engineers. Not proposed 
  • Site area, urban design and SEPP 65 Panel review process 
  • Consider measures to address bulk and scale

DA Done

DA/1835/2016 - 151 Brighton Avenue, previously Lifestyle marina now ‘Foreshore’ Mixed Use Development- Approved

Council endorsed the development standard variation under  Clause 4.6 of the Lake Macquarie Local Environmental Plan 2014, providing a maximum building height of 15.2m, exceeding the development standards of 13m and 10m.

It was with considerable community disappointment that the DA was approved and the building height allowed to be exceeded. This sets a worrying precedent for the foreshore not only in Toronto but across the city.

Some more parting comments from the petition...

Denise “The future needs open space not a crowded private waterfront.”

Arun “I live in the 2283 postcode, enough with blocking out the  Lake already!!”

Tuesday, 18 September 2018

What do you want to see on the Toronto foreshore?

The Toronto Foreshore Masterplan community consultation finishes on Monday 24th September.

This is an important opportunity to contribute to the future of the Foreshore and also the Bath St site. Council will be using the comments to inform their decision making, reflecting what the community wants... and there are some interesting comments on the site.

Even though 500 people physically attended a community meeting indicating the preference for community parkland, the flavour and likes of some comments on the Bath St area of the Toronto Foreshore Masterplan is that development is preferred.

Please consider contributing to the process and making a comment. Get help at the library if you need computer support. When making comments ensure they are unequivocal.

Make a comment on the TFM by 24/9/18.


Lifestyle (Hirecraft) Marina site -Decision coming

At the Council meeting on 10/9/18 Councillors deferred their decision on DA 1835, 151-155 Brighton Avenue, pending a site inspection on 20/9/18 to evaluate the impact of the proposed height and bulk variation to the standard development. 

At the meeting a spokesperson for nearby residents, Reg Crick, outlined the non-compliance issues, the building bulk is exceeded by 32.5% and the height exceeds the planning guidelines by 2.2m

“No where along the entire shores of Lake Macquarie is there a building or project that even goes close to resembling the bulk, height and scale that is proposed by this current application. We dispute that the variations on bulk and height are justified as being ‘in the public interest’. How can the proposed variation of a massive 32.5% be in the public interest when it will constrain the visual and recreational amenity of Toronto and the Lake Macquarie foreshore forever?”

The lack of notice provided to the community of the pending determination was another reason for calling of the site inspection which will be held 4:30pm, Thursday 20/9/18 on the site.

The final determination will go before the Councillors at the next council meeting on Monday 24th September, at 6:30pm. 

There will be a public forum address at 5:30pm as well. A great opportunity to see how the machinations of local government play out.

Treading lightly with big feet

The Living Smart Festival provides stalls and ideas on everything you ever wanted to know about treading lightly on the planet in a society that has one of the biggest footprints/population.

The fun day out is on Saturday 22/9/18 8am-2pm, a family-friendly event sharing ideas on how to adopt sustainable practices into everyday life.

Craig Reucassel, War On Waste ambassador will share his message at two presentations.

The festival will also feature free outdoor yoga classes, lost trades workshops, tiny house exhibitions, a native plant giveaway, electric vehicle displays, Raid My Wardrobe pop-up fashion event, sustainable cooking demonstrations and urban farming workshops.

Whether you want to be more sustainable at home, create ethically-produced meals for your family, revamp your wardrobe with pre-loved pieces, pick u your fruit and vege supplies or just enjoy a fun day out with the family, the Living Smart Festival is a super Saturday option to celebrate Spring and the renewal of a lighter lifestyle.