Mount­ing ob­jec­tions

Res­i­dents op­posed to DHA plans

The Chronicle - - News - MATTHEW NEW­TON Matthew.New­[email protected]­i­

WITH just 10 days to go un­til the dead­line for pub­lic sub­mis­sions on the pro­posed 342-lot De­fence Hous­ing Aus­tralia hous­ing es­tate on the es­carp­ment in Mount Lofty, nearly 50 peo­ple have al­ready had their say on the is­sue.

So far, the over­whelm­ing ma­jor­ity of sub­mis­sions are ob­ject­ing to the de­vel­op­ment.

De­fence Hous­ing Aus­tralia is propos­ing 342 lots, rang­ing from 400 sq m to 2400 sq m in size, on a 52-hectare sec­tion of the for­mer ri­fle range site at Mount Lofty.

If it re­ceives the nec­es­sary ap­provals, DHA would be­gin a staged con­struc­tion of the project, start­ing with civil works in 2019.

Peo­ple of all walks of life from doc­tors to OAM re­cip­i­ents - have ob­jected to the de­vel­op­ment in its cur­rent form.

One ob­jec­tion was even lodged from the United States.

Aside from con­cerns around the de­struc­tion of koala habi­tat, some res­i­dents of Mount Lofty have also ob­jected on the ba­sis of mas­sively in­creased traf­fic flows from the de­vel­op­ment, the un­suit­abil­ity of small lots, and their num­ber, the diminu­tion of hous­ing val­ues as a re­sult of the de­vel­op­ment of es­carp­ment land, stormwa­ter flow, risk of land­slides and flood­ing haz­ards, bush­fire risk, and the nat­u­ral and cul­tural her­itage of the for­mer ri­fle range grounds.

Of the 44 sub­mis­sions made so far, three were sup­port­ive of the de­vel­op­ment.

Two of those sub­mis­sions ar­gued it should be ap­proved be­cause it could lead to the de­vel­op­ment and ex­ten­sion of moun­tain bik­ing trails from Ju­bilee Park.

DHA se­nior de­vel­op­ment man­ager Rob Win­ters said DHA “would like to bring some bal­ance into the dis­cus­sion on Mount Lofty”.

“Just 52 hectares of our land is pro­posed for de­vel­op­ment. Over 40% of it is al­ready cleared.”

He also de­scribed the pro­posal’s den­sity as “low” - “342 res­i­den­tial lots... on a 52-hectare par­cel”.

“DHA’s ex­pert team found one koala on our site. We were well aware the species might oc­cur and we re­ported this sight­ing of a koala to the fed­eral De­part­ment of En­vi­ron­ment and En­ergy,” Mr Win­ters said.

“DHA will un­lock over 327 hectares of new es­carp­ment park­land to the com­mu­nity. DHA will also sig­nif­i­cantly im­prove the habi­tat qual­ity of this land by re­mov­ing weeds, manag­ing wild dogs and plant­ing na­tive koala habi­tat trees.”

Mr Win­ters en­cour­aged peo­ple to “get the facts” and head to www.mount­lofty­, and to have their say on the de­vel­op­ment be­fore De­cem­ber 18.

Photo: Nev Madsen

NOT HAPPY: Mount Lofty res­i­dents have held meet­ings op­pos­ing DHA’s pro­posed hous­ing es­tate on Ri­fle Range Rd.

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