Fears over fast-tracking of controversial project

An artist’s impression of the proposed village

Kincumber and Picketts Valley Community Action Group (KPVCAG) is concerned that a controversial over 55s residential development at Kincumber could be pushed through the approval process under the State Government’s Priority Projects Fast-tracked assessment program in the wake of COVID-19.

Choice Living Avoca would comprise 202 manufactured homes, short-term caravan sites, community buildings and amenities.

KPVCAG spokesperson, Graham Murray, said Central Coast Council had advised it was working through a raft of some 110 individual objections submitted against the proposal and petitions signed by 4600 people opposing the plan.

“Not only the KPVCAG but other neighbouring community associations have also submitted objections and expressed real concerns over Living Choice Australia’s request to fast-track the assessment process in an obvious attempt to take advantage of a post-COVID economy,” Murray said.

“This over-development demands the utmost scrutiny and any attempt … to rush this through will have long term repercussions for the local character of the region with a blatant exploitation of a zoning loophole opening a possible precedent for similar developments in surrounding green spaces zoned E4.”

Living Choice Australia confirmed it is proceeding with plans to develop the upmarket Residential Land Lease Community and had put it forward as a “shovel-ready” project under the fast tracked assessment program.

Project Director, Phil Goodman, said the group was committed to commencing work on site within six months and had the financial capacity to deliver the project immediately.

“The two key deliverables from the approval of Choice Living Avoca, which has a direct development cost of over $85M, are jobs and a long-term community benefit,” Goodman said.

“Timing should not pose any issues with the application currently making its way through the Central Coast Council Planning process.”

Goodman said Living Choice, which owns and operates three retirement villages in Davistown, Kincumber and Woy Woy, is already a long-term contributor to the Central Coast community with 71 people employed by head office, the three villages or by Living Choice Home Care.

“Living Choice also directly supports more than 70 Central Coast contractors, most of which are local small businesses,” he said.

If approved, Choice Living Avoca will comprise 202 high quality manufactured homes, a country club, welcome centre and numerous outdoor facilities such as a bowling green, tennis court, village green with barbecue area, community garden, caravan store and dog park.

Around 35% of the 24ha site will be devoted to home sites, roads and facilities and the remaining 65% will comprise existing vegetation and landscaped areas.

Goodman said there would be a wide range of contemporary home designs with materials and facades designed to enhance the site’s natural features.

He said the company had already received 29 registrations from prospective buyers.

Media release, Jun 18
Choice Living Avoca
Media statement, Jun 24
Kincumber Picketts Valley Community Action Group