Coastal warning for proposed Emerald Beach development

EMERALD Beach residents are again putting up a fight against a development proposal for sensitive coastal land in the village.

United Residents Group of Emerald (URGE) representatives met with Coffs Harbour City councillors last week as a 39-lot development proposal in land adjacent to Emerald Beach Holiday Park came back up for public exhibition.

This is the second time the Pridel Investments proposal has come onto public exhibition, following amendments after feedback in January.

WETLANDS PLAN: Cr Sally Townley, Elisabeth Nicolson and Tony Rothacker from United Residents Group of Emerald (URGE), Cr Nan Cowling and Karina Rothacker also from URGE, at the council chambers to discuss a proposed development in wetlands at Emerald Beach. Photo: Gemima Harvey
WETLANDS PLAN: Cr Sally Townley, Elisabeth Nicolson and Tony Rothacker from United Residents Group of Emerald (URGE), Cr Nan Cowling and Karina Rothacker also from URGE, at the council chambers to discuss a proposed development in wetlands at Emerald Beach. Photo: Gemima Harvey

Members of URGE met with councillors Sally Townley and Nan Cowling and other council representatives.

"The meeting went really well and the councillors were very supportive in our plea that we make sure the development, if any, is sustainable," URGE president Karina Rothacker said.

She said looking at council maps, by 2050 access to the development will be through hundreds of metres of water and by 2100 the dunes will have receded by 42m.

"It's these things that just haven't been taken into account at all," Ms Rothacker said.

"Building on this land could have disastrous effects on the flooding of Emerald Beach and it goes without saying, the proposed development too.

"The last thing we need in years to come is people seeking compensation from council because their land has been inundated - there are a number of councils north who are dealing with this very issue right now and are having to buy back land at the ratepayers' expense."

She said the public submissions for the application ended on Friday but the group had formally applied for an extension.

"Most of the residents were completely unaware the submission period had begun," she said.

"We're hoping council gives us more time to ensure everyone has time to respond."



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