Planning needs to reflect other council policies - GUST
Central Coast Council's planning provisions needed to reflect broader urban design and environmental policies, the Peninsula's Grow Urban Shade Trees group has told a community planning forum held in West Gosford on Saturday.
The forum was organised by the Central Coast Friends of Democracy and Central Coast Community Better Planning Group.
Group member Ms Jenny Wilder told the forum that a reductions in required planting spaces in the new "consolidated development control plan" worked against the council's adopted Greener Places and Biodiversity strategies.
It was pointless having these strategies if the planning provisions did not back them up, she said.
It was also pointless having the planning provisions if they were not being followed.
"Tree retention and extra planting feature heavily across the Character Statements under the desired characteristics, yet Council's actions have consistently undermined these objectives."
She said there needed to be "law and order in planning".
"Regulations should be followed.
"What it says in the LEP and DCP at any point in time is what should be implemented."
Ms Wilder said the group had been told that the provisions of council's Development Control Plan were "guidelines only".
"Such evasive language is a licence for profit-driven developers to destroy the liveability of our suburbs through death by a thousand cuts."
Ms Wilder said the benefits of having a tree canopy in urban areas had been well-documented.
These included health and safety, liveability, aesthetics, economics and biodiversity.
"Urban trees should not have to be fought for," she said.
"They should be planted and retained without question, as a matter of policy guided by the science and evidence."
Media release, 12 Dec 2021
Jenny Wilder, GUST