“THE DUKE “
December 2016 Update from The Friends of Freshwater Inc.
CONSTRUCTION COMPANIES COMPROMISE COMMUNITY AMENITY
We have been continuing to report on the activities of construction companies on the three major Freshwater sites and their continuing high level of intrusion into the amenity of our community.
Their B-double trucks have been working into the night, and rumbling through the community during sleeping hours, and constantly during the day, without any obvious traffic management plan, and with apparently scant regard for either pedestrian safety or community amenity.
These trucks in the mornings were parked, like a long metal canyon, for hours in Griffith Street and Carrington Parade. Often they gathered well before dawn. There are no public toilets in this area at those hours. Inevitable “calls of nature” could have been accommodated by temporary portaloos, but none were provided by either the builder, Ganellan, or the site owner, the Mounties Group.
At one stage during the last 6 months, fully-laden excavation trucks were passing through Freshwater Streets at 2-minute intervals with more than 3 loads per day for each truck. All of these passed along a route involving the narrow Evans Street and thence through Lawrence Street at Freshwater Village. This caused considerable disruption and dust exposure to businesses in the Village as well as a daunting prospect for pedestrians at the three crossings. These trucks would then exit Freshwater and deliver their load to various parts and return. Shale was transported to Austral Bricks at Fairfield, sandstone to Warriewood construction sites, and topsoil to Eastern Creek.
The community was never informed that the route changed mid-excavation from that envisaged in the DA, which included Abbott Road. This route change was apparently caused by safety concerns raised by North Curl Curl Public School.
Mounties could have issued a simple letter box drop to explain the reasons for this change.
Finally, the movement of excavation trucks on both the Growers and Mounties sites has ceased, and the D11 Excavator (the largest of its type in Sydney) has been moved off the Mounties site. These excavation trucks will, in turn, be replaced in the New Year by convoys of concrete trucks that will be delivering their loads from Brookvale Cement factories. Again this will be a major operation to complete the structural phase of the construction. Already at the Mounties site, Sections A and B are at Level 3 and Section C is at level 1.
Residents have been most patient with these builders particularly on the numerous occasions that they have worked outside of allotted hours or their residences have been caked in dust. It is disappointing that the Builder ceased site dust suppression, notwithstanding the fact that it was excavating 150,000 cubic metres of silica-laden sandstone and shale.
Ganellan, as a Tier 1 Builder on the Mounties Site, has a regulatory requirement to comply with the Conditions of its Permits, and Northern Beaches Council has to ensure breach enforcement action in accordance with the Provisions of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act, 1979. Unfortunately, it is often passed to a PCA (Principal Certifying Authority) to ensure compliance. This can become a black hole for any complainant.
If you have a genuine concern, then it is worthwhile to contact the site project manager, Tim McLachlan, Ganellan Ltd, at email@example.com.
Please also cc Dale Hunt at Dale.Hunt@mountiesgroup.com.au so that he is also aware of your concerns.
A SMALL VICTORY FOR COMMON SENSE.
Mounties Group recently lodged a DA Modification, 2016/0293 to increase the hours of work on its headland site. Saturday work was to be extended from 1pm until 3pm, and mid-week work until 8pm.
Friends of Freshie and 35 other nearby residents made detailed submissions of objection, and subsequently the application has been withdrawn. Common sense has prevailed
CLIFFTOP DEVELOPMENT HAS NEW DESIGN.
Arguably the ugliest building in Freshwater (and there are a few notorious contenders from the 1970’s) has finally been demolished at 5 Pavilion Street, after dominating the local skyline with its poorly built presence for more than 50 years.
The previous 12-Unit building has now been reduced to 6 large units with one per floor.
A Modification to the approved DA has now been lodged with Council for this to occur.
Construction will commence in early 2017.
It is thought that these will each fetch north of $4m.
FRESHWATER OPPOSES CELLARBATIONS LIQUOR LICENCE PROPOSAL.
Many thanks for your outstanding support in opposing the prospect of another packaged liquor outlet in Freshwater. More than 50 submissions were lodged and these have to be passed via a Community Impact Statement to the Department of Liquor and Gaming.
The proposal is to open a Metcash/ IGA franchise known as Cellarbrations in a new shop front in the Freshwater Development (now being constructed on the former Growers Site.
It should be noted that we are not opposed to licences being provided to Freshwater restaurants and cafes, as these enhance the vibrancy of the Village, and many now have them.
We are concerned at the prospect of this proposed outlet being located so close the Village Plaza and the adverse social impacts that its presence might generate.
YOUR RIGHTS WITH SWING CRANES AND THEIR AIR SPACE.
Our report on the impact of the installation of swing cranes for properties in the near vicinity to both “Freshwater” and “Kahana “constructions, has had a positive outcome for nearby residents. Even though their permission had not been sought, as is required, some neighbours approached the builders and have received recompense. One builder was reluctant to even return emails in the hope that his crane would be removed prior to having to pay anything. It has subsequently been removed but not before neighbours were paid their entitlements.
PROGRESS MADE ON RESTORING FRESHWATER’S SOUTHERN HEADLAND.
Friends of Freshwater has let a contract to Dragon Fly Environmental to undertake bush regeneration work in Undercliffe Reserve in accordance with funding provided by the GSLLS (land care) Grant.
Undercliffe Reserve has been heavily dominated by all manner of weed growth, and is not a great advertisement for a natural environment. By contrast, its alter ego, McKillop Park, on the northern headland, is relatively pristine The company has had WOHS induction for the work by NBC. These professional bush regenerators are now working on permanent stabilisation of a section of the Reserve (deemed inaccessible for volunteer work) and it is a fantastic supplement to our work. Images taken before work commenced, indicate a seriously weed infested area. The after image is of the first stage of the contract work, with further site stabilisation to occur and then installation of weed matting and native plantings.
During the year our numbers have grown to 6 volunteers with expert supervision provided by Peter Ziegler from Northern Beaches Council. It is rewarding work with one of the best workplace views.
We have been meeting on a fortnightly basis and this year have had 20 bush care sessions. If you have a spare couple of hours and would want to join us on a Thursday, then please do not hesitate to contact us on this site or via email.
Further minor funding assistance has also been provided by Council to enable further weed control of sloping sections. As a result we are now starting to make demonstrable progress.
In addition, the in-kind support by Council for refurbishment of Queenscliff Steps is reaching completion. This will also assist our work
CONFIRMED…HARBORD BABY HEALTH CENTRE TO BE CLOSED.
We reported in our last month’s edition that Freshwater’s long established Early Childhood Centre is set to close. Friends of Freshwater sought confirmation from the Department of Health and this has been confirmed in writing. It is slated to become part of a consolidated service within the new Community Health Centre being constructed near Warringah Mall. Mothers will then have to travel by car to the Mall to attend previously arranged appointments. This Centre will service the whole of the Northern Beaches.
There is an old saying that every child needs a Village, and the reverse is also true. The Village Early Childhood Centre is much cherished by young mothers, who can drop in for advice, and is used as a meeting point for mothers’ groups. It is pram accessible.
Located in a heritage listed building (a former fire station owned by Northern Beaches Council and rented to the Department of health for a nominal fee) it is an important part of the Village fabric.
This decision appears to have been made on the basis of administrative convenience and “cost effectiveness” rather than the needs of local women. Friends of Freshwater will be seeking to mount a campaign to reverse this decision in the New Year and we will need considerable support to overturn it.
PALM BEACH TO MANLY COASTAL WALKWAY.
Readers of the Duke will be aware of our campaign to finalise the link between South Curl Curl and Freshwater Rock pools by a board walk, and have it extended above the tidal zone to Ocean View Road at the northern end of Freshwater Beach.
Our submissions had resulted in this concept being included in the recommendations of the previous Warringah Council’s Open Space Strategy.
With the December 17 announcement of funding through the Stronger Communities Fund (deriving from the formation of the NBC) we are a step closer to the completion of this missing link in the pathway.
THE EXECUTIVE OF THE FRIENDS OF FRESHWATER EXTENDS OUR BEST WISHES TO YOU FOR THE FORTHCOMING YEAR AND WE THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT ON OUR VARIOUS PROJECTS.