Feedback opportunity for Mt Ettalong Reserve
Residents have until Thursday, June 4, to provide feedback on concept plans for a complete redesign of Mt Ettalong Reserve.
According to a Council media release, the aim of the upgrade and redesign was "to make it more accessible, functional and safe for the community".
The proposal includes detailed plans for a new southern- and eastern-facing lookout on the point.
If the Council's masterplan goes ahead, timber decking would lead out to the lookout - and step up to a smaller viewing platform.
"Integrated seats are then built into the edges of this decking, with arm rests and backings.
"Two separate angled seat plinths with backings and armrest provide wide views out to the south east, east and north east.
"Steel mesh surface finishes flush with the timber decking provide a light touch surface, that floats on-top of the rock platform.
"Steel rod balustrades provide a contemporary, low maintenance material that safely allow people to hold and enjoy views."
There would also be an "opportunity to include indigenous and flora/fauna representation in surface finishes and furniture items, for example, stingray referenced in balustrade handrail or a phrase written in dialect and etched in timber."
Council conducted an initial survey between February and March to understand how the community uses Mount Ettalong Reserve and what changes they would like to see incorporated into the Masterplan for its redesign.
The majority of survey respondents identified as residents of the area (78 per cent) and 20 per cent identified as having a disability.
Forty six per cent of respondents, the largest group, said they visited the site a few times a year.
The main purposes for visiting were leisure, exercise, site seeing and photography.
When asked to rate the importance of future attributes of the reserve, retention of natural pathways and bush trails was described as very important by 64 per cent of participants.
Some 69 per cent of respondents said concrete pathways were not at all important.
Ninety four percent of respondents said improvements should "keep a natural look and feel" and 76 per cent said the improvements should be "less formalised".
The survey did not appear to ask for feedback on the proposed new lookouts.
"Due to the restrictions on public gatherings Council was unable to deliver a planned community engagement workshop, however public submissions are still welcomed on the project online.
"Phase two of consultation with the public involves Council seeking feedback on the draft concept designs, which have been informed by the results of the initial surveys."
The overall landscape concept plan put to the community included the resurfacing of the walking track with "granitic sand".
The Concept Plan said "existing embedded rocks on trail track to be retained where possible," implying that some rock would be removed from the site.
The car park and the entry path are to be "formalised and resurfaced" and planting and seating benches added along the path leading up to the gate.
An area of timber paving will be added at the front of the gate "to signify the start of the trail track".
The Council has proposed re-levelling, resurfacing and grading the path to "ensure safer access throughout trail.
It has also proposed installing seated rest stops at various locations along the trail to "ensure a variety of seating to allow for all ability access, backrests, arm rests, picnic and flexible bench seating".
Beverage Williams, a land development and infrastructure design consultant, has been engaged to develop the Masterplan and conduct the community consultation "to ensure the designs for the reserve reflect what the community wants to see," according to the yourvoiceourcoast website.
The community can explore the concept plans for Mount Ettalong Reserve Masterplan and fill out the feedback form by Thursday 4 June to have their say: yourvoiceourcoast.com/mount-ettalong-reserve-masterplan
In addition to the feedback form, an interactive tool on the yourvoiceourcoast website gives residents the opportunity to give a thumbs up or thumbs down to each element of the masterplan which, at the time of writing, had garnered little response.
Website, 27 May 2020
Mt Ettalong Master Plan, Central Coast Council
Julie Garratley, Beverage Williams