It was somewhat heartening to read of the latest set of planning recommendations for Gosford CBD (Coast Community News edition 180), given the many false promises given to the community by politicians in the past.
I hope the new public servants brought in by the State government to oversee the Gosford City Centre revitalisation will now work closely with Council members, rather than just rubber-stamp decisions already made by State and Federal politicians who may not share the same vision as those of us who live here. The community is rightly sceptical of how the planning process has operated on the Central Coast, given disastrous planning decisions in the past on our precious waterfront precinct, where developers were offered this prime land to build totally inappropriate and underwhelming Tax and Finance offices.
This was clearly against the wishes of the community in prior consultations on what they wanted for this area. It is, therefore, pleasing to see that the new Central Coast Council, unlike the previous Gosford Council, is now doing their job by listening to the broader community, rather than just providing building incentives to developers which will see towers of almost 100 metres tall being erected on a nearby waterfront precinct. The Council needs to provide strong oversight in respect to sustainability issues and good infrastructure planning to avoid excessive traffic congestion and ensure adequate schools, health and transport options are also an integral part of any plans.
A review of the Joint Planning Review Panel processes is also needed to ensure that the poor decisions of the past are not repeated with the current Gosford City Centre plans. We will no longer tolerate planning which just puts money into developers’ pockets and is not in the broader interests of the community. We await with interest further reports on the Government architect’s vision for north and south precincts.
Email, Apr 23 Dr Tahir Turk, Springfi eld