Last Thursday Tweed Shire Council approved the haulage route from Crescent Street and Tweed Coast Road to Turnock Street in Kingscliff (DA20/0860) to use to fill from the M1 upgrade to fill an approved residential development site by Gales-Kingscliff.
The development has been in and out of the courts since 2000 and was originally approved to use sand as a fill from the area. Gales was seeking to gain permission to bring in fill for the site from the Pacific Highway M1 upgrades along the proposed haulage road.
The motion to approve the development application (DA) was put by Councillor James Owen (Liberal) and seconded by Councillor Reece Byrnes (Labor). It sought to amend the ‘consent order’ to incorporate additional conditions on the proponent (Gales) in the conduct of the haul. This was in addition to the conditions previously reported and required by the Council in the initial consideration of the matter. Some of these earlier conditions related to the sealing of the road, rehabilitation of any road damage, improvements to noise and dust mitigation.
Councillor Katie Milne (Greens) then moved a deferral motion until further studies were undertaken re the impact of the proposed fill versus sand. The Mayor, Independent Chris Cherry, spoke for this amendment stating also that an approved haul process (sand-pumping) has existed from the time of the (court ordered) development approval and this should take place. The amendment was lost (4-3) and then the original motion for approval was won (4-3).
Commenting on the approval president of the Kingscliff Ratepayers and Progress Association Inc (KRPA) Peter Newton told The Echo that, ‘Our members and the community still strongly prefer that the sand-pumping option be undertaken, either through the original approval or through the undertakings given by the proponent and Council during the February workshop. However, given this now does not appear possible, and that this long-approved residential development will need to proceed, our concerns have largely been met in the motion put forward by Cr Owen. Although not ideal, this outcome will mean far less pain for the community than what was the case in the DA as submitted by the proponent.
‘Understanding that Kingscliff and surrounding areas are now much more populated than when the Gales residential development was first approved, clearly puts a strong responsibility on both the proponent and Council to ensure that this project is managed with as less impact as possible on the fabric of Kingscliff and the amenity and liveability of the community. The Association will be watching this development closely to ensure that both the proponent and Council honour their commitments in this significant community matter.’
However, opponents of the motion have put in a rescission motion that will be discussed at the June 3 Tweed Council meeting.
‘I supported the rescission motion,’ Mayor Cherry told The Echo.
‘Since the previous meeting, there has been questions raised as to the flood impacts of using an impervious fill such as the M1 upgrade waste product in place of the sand that was approved to be used in such a large area on the floodplain and what impacts that may have on the flood modelling and the downstream flood impacts of this development on Chinderah.
‘The state government has announced that the Flood Development Manual for NSW is in the process of being upgraded as it is a 2005 document and Council is expected to implement the changes that that entails. It is obvious that since 2005 we know a lot more about flooding and know that hard engineering solutions are not always the most cost effective or efficient ways of doing things so the motion is to rescind this approval to use the haul route and defer for further information on flooding issues and the possible ramifications of using different fill on this site.’