Eco vil­lage for Ma­clean

Flood fear for project neigh­bours

The Daily Examiner - - NEWS - CAIT­LAN CHARLES cait­lan.charles@dai­lyex­am­iner.com.au

IMAG­INE a de­vel­op­ment with 11 houses that have the eco­log­i­cal foot­print of two house­holds.

That is what a de­vel­op­ment pro­posal be­fore Clarence Val­ley Coun­cil is hop­ing to achieve.

The sus­tain­able sub-di­vi­sion slated for Ma­clean will utilise un­der half the site, which lies on Hosckes Lane, for the res­i­den­tial com­po­nent and is de­signed to in­cor­po­rate en­vi­ron­men­tally sus­tain­able prin­ci­ples.

Un­der the cur­rent pro­posal, lots will not have retic­u­lated wa­ter, houses will rely on com­post­ing, wa­ter­less toi­lets, and houses will be con­nected to a grid in­ter­ac­tive power sup­ply and not have ac­cess to retic­u­lated elec­tric­ity.

But the im­me­di­ate neigh­bours to the pro­posed prop­erty have raised con­cerns over the im­pact this sub-di­vi­sion could have dur­ing flood times.

War­ren Rack­ham, who spoke on be­half of those neigh­bours, said the coun­cil re­port did lit­tle to al­le­vi­ate their con­cerns about times of heavy rain.

“The is­sue of con­struct­ing ac­cess over what is a wet area of the gully does not appear to have been ad­e­quately as­sessed,” Mr Rack­ham said.

He said the peo­ple he rep­re­sented wanted “nor­mal ur­ban stan­dards” to be ap­plied, “which in­clude retic­u­lated wa­ter and sew­er­age and elec­tric­ity.”

“How­ever, what is be­ing pro­posed here is a de facto com­mune, how­ever you dress it up,” he said.

Peter Cum­ing, ap­pli­cant for the sub-di­vi­sion, said he lived next door to the pro­posed de­vel­op­ment, which meant it was in his best in­ter­ests to en­sure it im­proved the en­vi­ron­ment.

Mr Cum­ing, who works for Sus­tain­able Fu­tures Aus­tralia, said the group had car­ried out de­vel­op­ments like this in other parts of Aus­tralia.

“This is a res­i­den­tial de­vel­op­ment of high qual­ity,” he said.

Mr Cum­ing said the sus­tain­able mea­sures were tried and tested.

“It’s not an ex­per­i­ment. It’s just an ef­fi­cient way of liv­ing. If you think about it, it’s things that our par­ents and grand­par­ents al­ways did – re­cy­cling, re­duced eco­log­i­cal foot­print, us­ing re­sources again, and grow­ing food,” he said.

Mr Cum­ing said the de­vel­op­ment would fit in with the sur­round­ing area, with the com­mu­nity con­trols stating that houses must look like those built in the area.

Photo: Clarence Val­ley Coun­cil

SEP­A­RATE: The con­cept plan for a sus­tain­able sub-di­vi­sion pro­posed in Ma­clean. This sub­di­vi­sion would have com­post­ing toi­lets, self-re­liant wa­ter sys­tems and so­lar pan­els.

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