Panel adds tree conditions to Webb Rd approval
The Local Planning Panel has approved an application for the construction of a four-bedroom dual occupancy development at 40 Webb Rd, Booker Bay.
The Panel added extra consent conditions aimed at ensuring that proposed tree planting occurs.
The structure will be a mixture of single and double storey with a cost estimate of $950,000.
This application attracted 15 objections, mainly due to the planned destruction of all trees on the site including a large angophora floribunda, at least two large jacaranda trees and three crepe myrtles.
In the Council assessment which recommended approval, all trees were approved for removal by the Council tree assessment officer.
The Council's ecologist was consulted to provide clarification: "Angophora floribunda is not listed as a threatened species in NSW.
"It is included as a characteristic canopy tree species within the Umina Coastal Sandplain Woodland endangered ecological community.
"However, single remnant trees within built up urban areas which are now isolated from areas of bushland are not considered to comprise the endangered ecological community."
The Panel hearing was held online on March 23, and the decision was published on Monday, March 28.
Woy Woy resident Mr Frank Wiffen spoke against the proposal, saying that no attempt appeared to have been made to retain a single existing tree.
"It is just this sort of 'it's too hard' attitude that is speeding up the destruction of the environment and the onset of climate change."
Mr Wiffen asked: "What species will the street trees be?
"Will they be provided as advanced trees and watered regularly until established?
"Will they provide sufficient canopy to shade large areas of road and impervious surfaces and therefore reduce the now well-documented Urban Heat Island effect?"
Mr Wiffen drew the planning panel's attention to the large multi-dwelling development that adjoins the site at the rear.
He said the Landscape Plan for this development at 48-54 Murray St, Bookers Bay, which bore the approval stamp of Gosford Council 2016, listed 16 large trees and 21 shrubs that were supposed to have been planted.
He said that there was no sign of any of this planting on the site.
If landscaping and remedial planting could not be guaranteed, it should be discounted completely when considering an application, he said.
Ms Sandra Trad from Red Apple Design spoke for the application and said that the owner regretted having to remove the trees but could see no alternative.
They also promised to carry out all remedial planting, she said.
In its decision, the Panel added extra conditions of consent in an attempt to guarantee the planting and survival of the street trees.
They were to: "Plant a minimum of three replacement trees (advanced specimens minimum 45 litre pot size) within the road reserve along Eastern Rd and one replacement tree along Webb Rd.
"Replacement trees are to be evenly spaced and adequately staked and protected to prevent vandalism.
"Street trees must be a native species such as water gum capable of achieving a minimum height of 10 metres.
"Maintain all works associated with the approved landscape plans for a period of 12 months from the date of any occupation certificate to ensure the survival and establishment of the landscaping.
"Replace all damaged, dead or missing areas of lawn and plantings at the completion of the landscaping maintenance period, including adjoining road reserve areas that are in a state of decline, to a healthy and vigorous condition in accordance with the approved detailed landscape plans and development consent conditions."
Local Planning Planning Panel minutes, 24 Mar 2022
DA63281/2021, Central Coast Council