I am writing to voice my objection to Central Coast Council’s proposal to re-classify Lot 9, 1 Austin Butler Ave, Woy Woy, from community land to operational land for re-zoning and sell off to Peninsular Plaza under the Asset Sales Program – Tranche 3.
This transfer of community land to private stakeholders will have a marked impact on the community’s enjoyment of this small allotment of shady green space adjacent to the shopping centre. and should not be allowed to occur.
I have noted, on visits to the shops and nearby sports grounds, that the amenity of this area is well utilised by many, including the elderly, people with disabilities, shoppers, children, and dog walkers, seeking to relax in the pleasant and shady ambience of this reserve.
Furthermore, the trees in this area provide valuable habitat and food supply for many species of fauna including black Cockatoos and the endangered Grey-headed Flying Fox.
The Woy Woy Peninsular has already suffered significant loss of tree cover, habitat, and green space as a result of Council’s planning policies and corresponding lack of foresight of the needs of residents with Woy Woy listed in Central Coast Council’s Greener Places Strategy (August 2019) as one of the hotter suburbs on the Central Coast due to the substantial loss of tree canopy between 2005 – 2014.
During this period, tree canopy cover at Woy Woy declined by 173 hectares while the area of impervious surfaces increased by 84 hectares, and unplantable space increased by 113 hectares.
The Greener Places Strategy proposed mechanisms to sustain and enhance urban forest canopy across all land parcels in the urban suburbs and aimed to increase the level of tree planting in suburbs with the greatest level of Urban Heat Island Effect, including Woy Woy, Umina, Ettalong, and Booker Bay.
The plan was not to reduce green spaces.
With the projected population growth under the Central Coast Regional Plan 2036, the corresponding trend for high density residential development, and the current global pandemic (which may well continue to impact society for the unforeseeable future), it is more important than ever that Council take measures to mitigate the concrete creep associated with urban growth and plan to retain, preserve, and expand our urban nature reserves to promote the health and wellbeing of Central Coast residents.
Email, July 26
Heather Graham, Copacabana