What a start to summer! With the temperature in the 30’s, a long weekend and the start of daylight saving Palm Beach and Whale Beach attracted thousands of visitors from far and wide arriving by bus, vehicle, ferry and bike. Parking and shady spots were certainly at a premium!
Governor Phillip Park, Station Beach on Pittwater side and the ocean side at North Palm Beach, Snapperman Beach at Pittwater Park and of course Palm Beach and Whale Beach themselves were a hive of activity with visitors enjoying picnics, walking, swimming, surfing, jetskis, kite flying, paddle boarding, boating, sunbaking, playing games, building sandcastles, the playground equipment, kite surfing and just relaxing. Great to see all the local cafes and restaurants bustling too.
This is why the PBWBA works tirelessly to protect and preserve our unique natural environment, heritage, recreation areas and beach culture for everyone to appreciate and enjoy.
COFFEE MEETING REPORT
We hold informal coffee meetings monthly with our members, friends and neighbours to listen to the concerns, questions, suggestions and issues which are important to the local Community and to discuss matters which have arisen from Northern Beaches Council, the NSW State Govt, the Federal Govt and other agencies. Sometimes we have a guest speaker and topics have ranged from local history to “digital legacy” to heritage to the environment to development.
More than 30 members of the Association attended the last Coffee Morning on 28 September in the Pacific Club.
Andrew Johnston, Northern Beaches Council Community Liaison Co-ordinator, attends these meetings and reports our matters directly to the appropriate Council Department and provides follow up on previous matters.
The following are examples of issues which arose at the last meeting or follow up which he reported back to us:
Collapsed stormwater drain at Whale Beach
(in the middle of the park beside the BBQ, adjacent to the beach)
Repair/construction work should get under way before the end of the year, problems in finding a suitable contractor being responsible for some of the delay. The President stated that the long delay was unacceptable as it was a safety issue and that work must be completed before the Christmas holidays. He asked that this be referred to the appropriate Council officers for urgent action.
Avalon Shared Space Trial
The trial period has been extended until the end of February 24 to include the busy Christmas holidays. The Council had an ‘on site’ session in the previous week, talking to stakeholders and the community about their experiences with the new set-up. Some of our members expressed dissatisfaction with the operation of the bus stops in Avalon. Buses do not always stop at the new bus stop near the Shell Service Station on Barrenjoey Road, some drivers expressing no knowledge of the new arrangements, and residents, particularly those with mobility challenges, have had distressing experiences of not knowing where or if the bus would stop for them. The bus stop needed to be well marked even in this trial period and all drivers should be acquainted with the changes. We asked that a seat be provided at the bus stop for the next few months, before the final decision on the trial is made, to assist less mobile residents particularly with the summer heat. Our comments will be forwarded to Transport for NSW.
Electric Vehicle Charging Stations
Council asked for residents’ feedback on the suggested locations for EV charging stations on the Northern Beaches. There was funding for 7 out of a list of 12 suggested sites so the Council wished to establish the priorities. Two were suggested in our area, one in Pittwater Park and the other in Governor Phillip Park near Dunes, the latter being an innovative trial using a nearby power pole, a useful experiment although charging would take longer with the lower power source. Members were asked to give their feedback. It was pointed out that queuing for charging space could become a problem at busy times and that charging time limit compliance is essential.
Florida Road Subsidence
Remediation work will commence in late October. PBWBA emphasised the urgent need for this work to be undertaken before the pressure of Christmas/summer holiday traffic.
Members discussed recent
which are detailed elsewhere in the Newsletter. Members are encouraged to send in submissions no matter how short. It is recognised that the sheer number and size of developments in our area puts considerable stress on residents and creates many difficult and dangerous situations with the frequent movement of trade vehicles and trucks, particularly large ones and has huge impact on local road infrastructure. We must continue to find ways of lessening this impact where possible and keep Council informed of particular difficulties. Compliance is a very important issue and the President stressed that there was major dissatisfaction with Council’s seeming inability to enforce regulations. He asked Andrew Johnston to pass these comments back to Council staff.
One of our members alerted us to the poor state of one of the heritage listed Norfolk Island pines at Palm Beach beachfront (at the southern end of Ocean Rd). It appears to have become stressed probably from lack of water. All the pines need more protection as befits their heritage status and Andrew Johnston was asked to report this to the appropriate Council arborists for assessment.
Attention was drawn to the Premier’s recent comments in Parliament on NIMBYism being a major cause of slowness in providing additional housing on the Northern Beaches, specifically mentioning Pittwater. He put our area on notice that things would change. However, it does not seem to be understood that we are not asking for special treatment, merely that the planning regulations/controls in the Local Environment Plan and Development Control Plan be adhered to. The lack of suitable building blocks in a topographically difficult area restricts the number of houses which can be built here. There is one main road in and out and little infrastructure to support a significant increase in population.
Click here: Premier Chris Minns’ full and unedited statement can be read in the NSW Parliamentary Hansard record.
Another member requested a Council rubbish bin be placed in the laneway area near the private wharf at Sand Point/Iluka Rd as visitors and boat users have nowhere to dispose of rubbish other than nearby residents’ bins. This will be followed up by Council.
The next Coffee Meeting will be held on Friday 27th October at 10.30am at The Pacific Club. Guest speaker will be the Local History Studies Librarian from NBC. All welcome! BYO coffee or tea.
The Community is very concerned and dismayed with continuing over-development and inappropriate development in the Palm Beach/Whale Beach area (and elsewhere in the LGA) and finds it extremely difficult to understand why the existing controls in both the LEP and the DCP and community opinion are so often ignored.
We cannot emphasise enough how important it is to make the Council aware of how we feel by making individual submissions. This is the most important way – in fact almost the only way – that members can influence Council policy.
Only by ensuring that the Pittwater LEP2014 and DCP21 controls are enforced can we retain our ‘seaside-village’ feel and curb the push for over-large, overbearing and bulky developments which are destroying the streetscapes and amenity we treasure.
Here are details of the latest proposed development of concern –
DA2023/1289 LODGED FOR 1112-1116 BARRENJOEY RD PALM BEACH
The site is located in an E1 (formerly B1) “local centre” zone. Palm Beach General Store/Fantasea Cruises/Contemporary Hotels offices were located here and it is on the northern side of heritage listed Barrenjoey House, opposite Pittwater Park and Palm Beach Wharf. Many of you will remember the original “Swell” cafe and prior to that “Ancora” restaurant traded here. The pedestrian crossing leads to/from the Wharf and the main southbound bus stop and bus shelter is located here too.
A DA for the site was approved in 2010 but minimal work was completed and the 3 shops continued to trade until 2022/23. The site was sold to developers in 2021.
After the demolition of the three shops in 2023 a DA has now been lodged described as “alterations and additions to commercial development – Demolition works and construction of Shop Top Housing”.
The 2023 DA seeks approval for a five storey shop top housing development with 7 x 3 bedroom apartments over 4 levels, 2 shops/retail (non-food premises) at ground level and basement parking for 23 vehicles.
All documents and plans can be found by clicking this link: DA2023/1289
The original DA approved by the former Pittwater Council in 2010 can be found here N0102/10
This approval was for 5 x 3br residential units, ground floor commercial space and kiosk with basement carparking for 22 cars.
The new DA is now on public display. Submissions close on Monday 23 October 2023.
We encourage you to lodge a submission to let the Council Planners know your thoughts.
Remember a submission from PBWBA, with over 450 members, only counts as ONE submission.
We believe that It is our responsibility – the Community’s responsibility and the Council’s responsibility – to ensure that a building on such a significant site which is adjacent to the heritage building Barrenjoey House respects this heritage item, makes a positive contribution to the streetscape, the seaside village feel and the amenity of the area for current and future generations.
In order to prepare an objection we are seeking advice regarding this development and the many breaches of LEP and DCP controls we have noted, in particular excessive height, bulk and scale, insufficient parking spaces, proposed relocation of the existing bus stop and bus shelter (to who knows where?), negative impact on heritage listed Barrenjoey House, overwhelming impact on the streetscape and when viewed from a public place ie Pittwater and Pittwater Park and failure to ensure that the new development provides a diverse and active street frontage to attract pedestrian traffic and to contribute to vibrant, diverse, and functional streets and public spaces. .
We have been asked to prepare more details for our members to consider should they wish to write a submission and this will be sent separately prior to 23 October.
LAND & ENVIRONMENT COURT No. 2022/331015
231 WHALE BEACH RD (former Whale Beach Deli site)
Click here for details Mod2021/0983
The developer of 231 Whale Beach Road applied to Council to modify the consent and increase the number of patrons for the proposed restaurant from 64 patrons and 6 staff to 170 patrons and 18 staff.
The Northern Beaches Local Planning Panel refused the application, and the developer appealed that decision to the Land & Environment Court (LEC).
A conciliation meeting was held on-site on 27 March 2023 and as a settlement was not reached, the conference was terminated, and the proceedings have been set down for hearing at the LEC on 11-12 October 2023. Should you wish to make a further submission please contact Council’s Legal Representative in this case:
Chris Gough | Senior Partner | Acc. Spec. (Loc Govt & Plan) | per his secretary,
Therese Edwell | Storey & Gough Lawyers
T 9689 0700 E firstname.lastname@example.org |
LAND & ENVIRONMENT COURT No: 2023/242901
1102 BARRENJOEY RD PALM BEACH (former fish & chip shop site)
Click here for DA2022/0469
This DA was refused by the Northern Beaches Local Planning Panel on 20/4/23. The developer lodged an appeal to the Land & Environment Court.
An s.34 conciliation conference has been listed persuant to the Land & Environment Court Act 1979 for 24 January 2024. The conference will commence at 9:30am at the Property. It is the Court process to allow residents and interested persons who objected to the proposed development the opportunity to inform the Court orally of their concerns in relation to the proposed development. The Commissioner presiding will have discretion as to the number of residents permitted to address the Court. It is the usual course for the Commissioner to hear from objectors at the commencement of the conference. Following the evidence from residents and interested persons, the parties will then participate in a conciliation conference. Please be aware that this is a confidential conference between the parties and the Court, and as such residents will not be permitted to attend. The purpose of a conciliation conference is to explore whether an agreement can be reached between the parties. If the matter is not resolved between the parties at the conciliation conference the matter will be set down for a Court hearing at a later date. At the Court hearing, copies of all resident submissions will be given to and considered by the Court. If you wish to attend the conciliation conference and address the Court with your concerns/comments, could you please inform Council’s solicitors Chris Gough Senior Partner,
Email: email@example.com no later than Wednesday, 25 October 2023.
PBWBA has nominated two of the Committee to address the conference with our objections.
DEVELOPMENT ACTIVITY REPORTS
click: NBC Development Activity Reports
These reports, published by Council, provide interesting information on Development Applications in general.
Northern Beaches Council monitors the progress of Development Applications from lodgement through to determination to evaluate performance and trends.
The reports are produced quarterly and at the end of each financial year and include the following highlights:
- Number of Development Applications lodged and determined
- Value of Development Applications received and approved
- A breakdown of Development Applications received in each development proposal type (e.g. alterations & additions, secondary dwellings, commercial)
- The average processing times for the quarter and the financial year.
For example – in financial year 22/23
Number of Planning & Development applications lodged – 2,269
New Residential Dwellings – 293 Secondary Dwellings – 111
AVALON BEACH HISTORICAL SOCIETY (ABHS) – 40th BIRTHDAY CONGRATULATIONS!
Formed in 1983 ABHS holds a treasure trove of photos and information, not only Avalon Beach, but for Palm Beach, Whale Beach and Barrenjoey.
The Society holds 4 meetings a year with the September meeting being the AGM. Meetings are always of interest with either a guest speaker or photographic show focussing on a particular area of research and interest.
If you wish to become a member of the Society, write to the Avalon Beach Historical Society, Post Office Box 1, Avalon Beach 2107 or call Geoff Searl (President) on 0439 292566. Website: https://abhs.org.au/
You are also very welcome to visit the Society in John Stone›s photography shop in Bowling Green Lane Avalon any Saturday morning between 10am and 1pm.
OFF-LEASH DOG TRIAL PALM BEACH (NORTH)
This is an extract of the response from Crown Lands and Public Spaces | Department of Planning and Environment re the propsed off-leash dog trial at North Palm Beach.
“Off-leash dog areas are a Council issue dealt with under the Companion Animals Act 1998. The department has invited Council to request to become Crown Land Manager (CLM) of the land below Mean High Water Mark (MHWM) on the ocean side of R64483 known as Governor Phillip Park. Council is already the appointed CLM of R64483 for the purpose of Public Recreation.
Plans of Management are legally required before Council can make a decision to progress the potential trials. If Council are appointed CLM for the area below MHWM, they will have to develop a Plan of Management for the reserve including an allowance for the off-leash dog trial. Appropriate community consultation is integral to the Plan of Management process and the public will have an opportunity to voice their concerns at that time.
If a Plan of Management including an allowance for the off-leash dog trial is adopted, Council as appointed Crown Land Manager can administer the proposal under the Companion Animals Act 1998, Local Government Act 1993 and Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 as required for dog issues.”
The new Plan of Management (PoM) for Governor Phillip Park is being developed by Council now and will be presented for Community consultation in 2024/25.
NORTH PALM BEACH SURF CLUB
With the summer fast approaching and the flags “up” for the season North Palm Beach Surf Club, located in Governor Phillip Park, is welcoming new members. For further information please see the website: https://www.northpalmbeach.com.au/
DREDGING ETTALONG CHANNEL
For the past several months the ferry to Ettalong & Wagstaffe has been operating only to Patonga as the channel has been blocked by sand. This has been very inconvenient to visitors, commuters and residents who use the popular ferry service to and from the Central Coast.
McQuade Marine put the vessel «Faucon» to work at 5am on Friday, August 25, and it will remove approx 30,000 cubic metres of sand to create a 30-metre wide channel, both inside and on the ocean side of Half-Tide Rocks. Work is expected to be completed by the end of October.
The channel will accommodate vessels with a 2.5 metre draft. Dredged sand will be placed in the water on Ettalong Shoals, just off Ocean Beach, in line with previous dredging campaigns.
COMMUNITY FIRE UNIT (CFU) BBQ & INFORMATION DAY MACKAY RESERVE
90 to 100 residents and visitors attended the very successful information day and bbq held on Sunday 10th September at Mackay Reserve where the original CFU is located. Fire & Rescue NSW, Avalon Firies and members/volunteers with the CFU explained how to prepare your property, how to develop a survival plan and other fire safety issues. A second trailer, CFU477, is now located at the Ralston Rd end of Mackay Rd. Thank you to all who organised and supported this important community event.
The links below provide very helpful information.
Click here: Fire & Rescue NSW click here: Fire Safety Escape Plan for Home
To organise a Fire Safety Home Visit click the link.
“HAVE YOUR SAY” NORTHERN BEACHES COUNCIL
STREETS AS SHARED SPACES AVALON BEACH “HAVE YOUR SAY” EXTENDED
A decision has been made to extend the Avalon Beach Shared-Space Trial period to 28 February, 2024. (The trial had previously been set to conclude on 1 October, 2023).
This extension is designed to enable an evaluation of the road changes during the peak summer period.
The community survey will continue to remain open during the extended trial period, and a report is now expected to be presented to Councillors in April 2024. We strongly encourage participation, particularly if you have an opinion about a particular aspect, to ensure the Council is well-informed and is aware of serious concerns. Please see below link to complete the survey:
You can register comments not only on the shared space itself but ‘fall-out’ changes such as bus stops and parking and also register what should be a priority and that is improvements to the footpaths and walkways. This trial was financed by a State Government grant so the Council has not spent any money in Avalon yet. It is time they did. The area is a nightmare to negotiate with a wheelchair or stroller and a dangerous area for the elderly and those with mobility or vision issues.
MAYOR RE-ELECTED AND NEW DEPUTY MAYOR ELECTED SEPTEMBER 2023
MAYOR – SUE HEINS
Councillor Heins has served as a Councillor since 2012, on both Warringah and Northern Beaches Councils. She has served as Deputy Mayor for three terms.
Councillor Heins has lived and worked on the Northern Beaches for over 25 years. She has supported the local small business community passionately for many years, running networking events and facilitating mentoring programs. She is the former President of the Warringah Chamber of Commerce and Industries. Councillor Heins is also involved with several charities and is currently Chairperson of Women & Children First (domestic violence services) and Women’s Healing Sanctuary. In 2015, Cr Heins received the Minister’s Award for Women in Local Government for her outstanding contributions to Council and the community.
DEPUTY MAYOR – GEORGIA RYBURN
Georgia Ryburn is a Senior Manager at a professional services firm and has demonstrated expertise in leadership and strategic thinking. As a management consultant, Georgia specialises in evidence-based policy reform, strategy, process improvement and stakeholder engagement, having worked across multiple industries and sectors.
She has a BA (Media and Communications) and Masters of Business Management from Sydney University, both on full academic scholarships, and was awarded Dean of Business Scholar Award for outstanding academic excellence. She is a graduate member of Australian Institute of Company Directors.
Councillor Ryburn is a fourth-generation Northern Beaches local, and having grown up here and now raising her family here, knows the everyday pressures of her community.
The new PITTWATER WARD COUNCILLOR, KARINA PAGE, gave her opening address to Council. She replaced Rory Amon who resigned from Council as he is now the Member for Pittwater. Cr Page lives in Mona Vale and previously served two terms on Manly Council from 1996 to 2002. We look forward to meeting with her soon.
SAVE THE DATE
The next COFFEE MEETING will be held on Friday 27th October at 10.30am at The Pacific Club. Guest speaker will be the Local History Studies Librarian from NBC.
All welcome! BYO coffee or tea.
The final coffee meeting for the year will be held Monday November 27th at 10.30am at The Pacific Club. We are waiting for confirmation that there will be a presentation by the PBSLSC on the use of defibrillators.
PALM BEACH MARKETS
in Governor Phillip Park from 9am – 3pm
- Sunday 22nd October,
- Sunday 26th November and
- Sunday 10th December – Christmas Market
“SPRING INTO SUMMER FESTIVAL” Newport Beach Chamber of Commerce
Sat November 4th
AVALON PRESERVATION ASSOCIATION AGM Thursday 23 November 7pm at Avalon Beach Surf Club Guest speaker – Scott Phillips, recently appointed CEO of NBC.
CHRISTMAS ON THE GREEN – AT THE AVALON BOWLO – SUNDAY 3rd DECEMBER
AVALON BEACH CHRISTMAS CAROLS SAT 9th DECEMBER
PBWBA MEMBERS CHRISTMAS COCKTAIL PARTY
“DUNES” SUNDAY 10th DECEMBER 6pm Details to come.
Please do not hesitate to contact PBWBA with any questions, concerns or thoughts.
PROF RICHARD WEST AM