The NSW Government’s Joint Regional Planning Panel visited the site of a proposed 161 lot subdivision at West Yamba last Friday, before holding a public meeting at the Clarence Valley Council’s Maclean chambers.
At last week’s council meeting (Tuesday July 21), councillors “noted” that the subdivision was with the Joint Regional Planning Panel for determination – councillors did not debate concerns raised in submissions, of which there were 23 in support and 28 objections.
The submissions in support of the development were made on a form letter, which stated, in part: “This is the first block of residential coming out of West Yamba and encourages future employment opportunities and business expansion for not only Yamba but the whole Clarence Valley.
“…I see that the developer has allocated 29 lots specifically for ‘Low Cost Housing’.”
Nine of those submissions were made by Grafton residents, one by a Tucabia resident and the rest by Yamba residents.
Objections to the proposal came in the form of a formal submission prepared for developers of future adjoining allotments (east of this proposal), Messrs Bates, Dougherty Brothers and Kahuna No1, which included a detailed report prepared by Grafton-based development consultants A. Fletcher & Associates Pty Ltd.
All of the individual objections were made on a letter prepared by a nearby resident.
These documents outlined concerns about an estimated 1,000 tonnes per day of fill that will be needed to raise the site’s level to meet flood mitigation requirements.
The submission estimates that “31 truck and dog trailers” each day “will create havoc at an already busy intersection of Carrs Drive and Yamba Road”, which may also result in the trucks using Harold Tory Drive and Norfolk Avenue to avoid the Carrs Drive intersection.
These objections also highlighted concerns about safety, noise and air quality (dust from the infill and truck and car exhausts), due to the resultant increase in traffic.
The A. Fletcher & Associates’ objection argues that the proposed housing density is 33 per cent over the limit and that there is a “direct contradiction to Clarence Valley Councils [sic] planning and engineering advice provided to the Consortia over the 4 years”, regarding the area’s major floodway swale.
It argues, among other detailed concerns, that “this total disregard for the cumulative effect of filling of the other residentially zoned land in West Yamba is totally unrealistic and would seriously affect the other West Yamba owners [sic] ability to develop their land”; and that the proposed subdivision does not “allow for connectivity” with the future West Yamba urban areas to the east of the 22 Carrs Drive proposal.
While answering councillors’ questions at last week’s council meeting, environment planning and community director Des Schroder said flooding and climate change considerations meant that an average height of 1.5 metres of fill would be required across the entire proposed West Yamba site, which will accommodate around 1,100 lots.
He said there “maybe and alternative to pump sand from the bay” to compliment trucking the fill to the site.
The subdivision, once approved by the NSW Government, is expected to take place in three stages of 57, 54 and 50 lots.
Councillors Baker and Williamson declared significant non pecuniary interests, as they are the council’s members of the Joint Regional Planning Panel, and left the chamber during discussion of the planning proposal.