Mount Co­lah re­sists huge new hous­ing es­tate

Monthly Chronicle - - Front Page - Jenny Bar­lass

Di­vid­ing nearly five hectares of bush­land into 51 lots in what is said to be the largest sin­gle bush­land devel­op­ment in Hornsby Shire for decades, has sparked hun­dreds of Mount Co­lah res­i­dents to band to­gether to fight the plan.

They have a long list of rea­sons 23 Chest­nut Road Mount Co­lah shouldn’t go-ahead, and have un­til April 1 to sub­mit these ob­jec­tions to Hornsby Coun­cil.

These in­clude pos­si­ble pol­lu­tion from the old tip which is - now Mt Co­lah Oval - into the back­yards of the pro­posed houses on the site, that it’s in a very high fire zone sur­rounded by bush­land, and an in­crease in traf­fic both within the devel­op­ment and with ac­cess to the Pa­cific High­way which is al­ready sub­ject to reg­u­lar ac­ci­dents.

Stormwa­ter and flood­ing con­cerns for fu­ture res­i­dents, and en­vi­ron­men­tal is­sues in­clud­ing the threat to pro­tected species on the en­vi­ron­men­tally sen­si­tive 4.53ha site are also of great con­cerns to lo­cals bor­der­ing the site.

Res­i­dent of 25 years Carolyn Stan­ley from the Mount Co­lah Res­i­dents Ac­tion Group, or­gan­ised an in­for­ma­tion meet­ing in Fe­bru­ary which at­tracted 80 con­cerned lo­cals.

“We have so many con­cerns re­gard­ing the devel­op­ment,” she said. “These in­clude the cur­rent roads in­fra­struc­ture not cop­ing with 51 new houses or over 100 res­i­dents, ex­ces­sive devel­op­ment within a bush­fire prone area, redi­rect­ing the course of Glee­son Creek, lo­cat­ing power lines un­der the new houses, re­duc­ing ease­ments from 60m to 15m and re­moval of many trees and loss of threat­ened species.”

The devel­op­ment bor­ders Berowra Val­ley Bush­land Park, pro­tected un­der NSW leg­is­la­tion for its en­vi­ron­men­tal sig­nif­i­cance. The sig­nif­i­cance of the 51 lots is the same as that of the pro­tected park.

She said the DA also pro­posed redi­rect­ing stormwa­ter drains which would cause flood­ing, and shoe­horn­ing houses onto 500sq m lots with 2m sep­a­rat­ing each one, when the av­er­age lot in the area is be­tween 750m and 900m.

The Mount Co­lah Res­i­dents Ac­tion Group is hold­ing an­other com­mu­nity in­for­ma­tion meet­ing at the devel­op­ment site at 23 Chest­nut Road, on Sun­day March 26 at 2pm. The ap­pli­cant was un­able to be con­tacted for comment.

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