The five stormwater pipes on the western side of the roundabout.
The five stormwater pipes on the western side of the roundabout.

Roundabout 'causes floods': locals

ONE Hogbin Drive roundabout has neighbouring residents hopping mad and it has nothing to do with traffic.

Prince Street residents on the eastern side of the elevated round-about that links their street with Hogbin Drive say it has caused flooding in their street since it was built in 2000 and they have been complaining to Coffs Harbour City Council since 2002.

After March 31 last year their complaints became a chorus, culminating in a petition to the council in September containing signatures from 33 residents, including holiday accommodation owners.

Prince Street resident John Wallace, who has been campaigning for improvements for years, said Hogbin Drive North had provided flood free north-south access at the expense of Park Beach residents.

Mr Wallace, who has filled in surveys, written letters to council, signed petitions and attended flood information forums, said the street flooded again in November.

“Engineers keep coming and looking at it, shaking their heads and going away again and nothing happens,” Mr Wallace said.

“I’m not an engineer, but there are five 24-inch pipes on the western side of Prince Street and one 12-inch pipe on our side of the street and that pipe just can’t cope.

“The drains on our side of Hogbin Drive also need cleaning out.”

He said a Colorbond fence, erected in the old ‘dunny lane’ at the rear of Prince Street by the council, which had stopped people ‘tracking through’ between Prince and Vincent streets, had nevertheless also contributed to preventing stormwater from getting away. He said before construction of the fence, the grassed lane had helped the flow of water.

Eighty-year-old Mr Wallace, who has lived at Park Beach for 40 years, said in last year’s storms he had stayed up all night using sandbags, mops and buckets to keep the water out of his ground-floor unit and several of his neighbours had flooded. One of his neighbours said she has ‘come home to a lake.’

Mr Wallace said Sunseeker Holiday Units, Oceana Holiday Units and Beachlander had never flooded before.

Coffs Harbour City Council has a nine-point flood mitigation plan for major projects and has compiled a long list of specific locations with drainage problems.

Deputy Mayor Cr Bill Palmer said yesterday he would contact Mr Wallace today, arrange to inspect the problem and follow the matter up with council staff.



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