The Emerald Beach draft masterplan.
The Emerald Beach draft masterplan. Contributed

Fears for Emerald Beach future

CREATING masterplans for two beach reserve areas has caused major controversy for the community since planning started at the beginning of the year.

The Emerald Beach and Sandy Beach reserve final draft masterplans were released on the Coffs Harbour City Council website earlier this week.

Residents and users of the Emerald Beach reserve have spoken up on Facebook about their concerns with the final draft and have organised an event to be held tomorrow to give people an idea of what has been proposed.

From February this year through to July, the masterplan has been developed through a series of workshops with residents from Sandy Beach and Emerald Beach, input from surveys and individual submissions.

People have left comments with their thoughts on the latest plan which includes the removal of the boat ramp and the existing loop road.

"From our perspective, the do as little as possible option is far and away the best option... From residents that we have spoken to, there is little public support for option 5 so it is disappointing that this is now the preferred option,” commented Andrew Sim.

"The most sensible option is to keep the current loop road but have it run closer to the beach front houses that will allow a much larger usable reserve area for the public...” wrote Chris1.

"Large car parks and big concrete turning circles are not in line with the character of a small beautiful beach side village.”

"Emerald Beach does not need a major overhaul/ redesign. We just need some things fixed, that is all anyone ever asked for. Please listen to the locals!” commented Lyss.

"I have lived in Emerald Beach for 35 years, it's a beautiful unique rustic village and the only beach you can sit in your car and watch the waves. It's perfect as it is, don't ruin it with fancy infrastructure, dangerous car parks, clogged up roundabouts, we need the boat ramp. I love Emerald Beach as it is and always will. No to the master plan,” wrote Jassyjasper345.

"Community opinion expressed across social media suggests option five will tear at the fabric of the Emerald Beach community. It takes away the unique beach village feel and will damage the lifestyle of the residents.

"It will create a traffic log jam, destroy the community's traditional meeting places, and put our children's lives at risk,” Simon Reid wrote in a letter from a group of Emerald Beach community members.

Organised by a group of locals, the Emerald Beach foreshore discussion will start at 10am at Emerald Beach.

The public is invited to have their say on the draft masterplans for Emerald Beach and Sandy Beach on the councils website until Monday, October 16.

Visit goo.gl/CpQV52 to view the plans and community comments.



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