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In Elermore Vale NSW on “Erection of 25 attached two...” at 18 Nerigai Close Elermore vale, NSW:

Meredith Harris commented


I am writing to you to raise my concerns regarding this proposed development. I have lived in the area for my whole life and have seen many changes within the subdivision behind my house. I live at 29 Watkins Road, Elermore Vale on the corner of Kerry Avenue, the only entrance in and out of the subdivision. When Newcastle City Council approved the first development within this subdivision all those years ago (when my parents were the owners of my house) they gave a guarantee to concerned residents that they would not extend the subdivision beyond that development without first making a second entrance and exit. Yet some years down the track and many additions onto the subdivision this issue has not been addressed and a second entrance and exit to this subdivision has not been forthcoming.

My concerns regarding this proposed extension of the subdivision are as follows:

• The Traffic flow is a major concern as there has been nothing done to the infrastructure to cope with the large traffic flow coming along Watkins Road and turning into Kerry Avenue the only entrance and exit from the subdivision. If you take a look at your plans Kerry Avenue the main entrance into this subdivision is not wide enough to cope with the traffic already produced with the existing houses. There have been many accidents along this road when there are cars parked either side of the road as there is only enough room for one car and with the bend in the middle of the road it is very hard to see what is coming the other way hence the danger. There have also been near misses with young children from within the subdivision darting across the road between cars and nearly being hit. The volume of traffic would increase by at least 50 cars a day along this already dangerously narrow road and would exasperate the dangers. This is not the only narrow street which your intended extension will be using Melinda and Nerigai are very narrow streets and are already over flowing with cars on these narrow road ways. When you plan to develop a parcel of land you need to provide ample parking within the complex to house the vehicles of the people who will be living in this complex as well as having parking available for anyone who wants to visit and this proposal falls very short on both counts.
• My second major concern is the water run off from these Units the infrastructure that exists for this subdivision does not cope with the run off of the existing houses and has caused major flooding concerns (including the need for council to buy to houses on Croudace Road that flooded in previous floods because the creek broke its banks and caused major problems). Can you please show me where on this plan they have created any kind of holding bays for water run off for this proposal. Because if you cannot then this proposal falls short in the planning process the last time a developer wanted to extend this subdivision this was a main reason the plans were rejected because this issue was not addressed and the fact that Newcastle City Council has done nothing to improve the water run off situation. The proposal does not make any effort to regulate the run off without it going straight into the drainage system which will cause all sorts of problems including I would expect the flooding of the houses in Cheryl Close and Watkins Road that are built close to the creek which would carry the run off. You cannot keep extending and extending to subdivisions without improving infrastructure problems first because it will just lead to a disaster. I have lived in Watkins Road all my life and have seen the problem which the water run off has caused one of the resident at 20 Watkins Road he has lost quite a substantial part of his land due to the creek running through his property and his land was classed as a flood zone which prevented him from selling his property. When he purchased his property this was not the case and because of the over development already of the existing subdivisions in the area and the increased storm water run off now his land is affect because there has not been the infrastructure put in place to cope with the extra water run off.
• Another concern for myself and the residents already residing in the subdivision is if there is an emergency within the subdivision (which we have experienced) can you please explain how they will all be able to exit in time down this one narrow road? The fire brigade did an inspection when the last proposed subdivision was submitted and it failed completely as there is no second entrance and exit needed to get the residents out should there be such an emergency. The safety of the residents living within this subdivision should be considered.
• There is also the question of the southern brown bandicoot which is near extinction that lives in the bush and cannot be relocated from its natural habitat what will happen to it?
• I would like to know if you are aware of the amount of traffic that actually uses Watkins Road which is the only access road to the subdivision because when a road count was done years ago there were at least 5,000 cars a day using this suburban street as a main through way and with all the development that has happened in the area I can only imagine the traffic flow now.

Before this proposal goes any further there are a few things that I would like either the council or the developer to carry out.

These are as follows:

• I would request that a road count be conducted in Kerry Avenue and a proposal put in place for this road to cope with the increased traffic volume.
• I would also ask that a report be done regarding what the developer is willing to do to combat the water run off that his development would produce (or when the area floods is the council going to be responsible for the residents houses that get flooded because the infrastructure was not adequate). Is the council willing to pay compensation to the owner of 20 Watkins Road for the damage that the water run off has done to his property because the infrastructure has not been improved to cope with the run off.
• I am also very concerned that the only people notified about this development were only in the immediate proximity to the development and the wider community was not informed. Do you not think that this proposal will affect everyone living within this subdivision and the only way into and out of this subdivision eg Watkins Road? I would therefore request that the submission time for rejections to the development be extended so the wider community can have there say and this would give the developer the time to get the reports that I have requested and time to come up with some strategies to cope with the traffic and the volume of water from the development (council cannot keep approving extension after extension without putting into action plans to the existing infrastructure to cope with these developments and whether they are at the expense of the developer or the council a long term strategy needs to be put in place)
• I would also request that a report needs to be carried out by the Fire Brigade in relation to the existing infrastructure to ascertain whether one entrance and exit is able to cope in the case of an emergency (which we all know it will not)
• I also think the council should be working on a plan to have a second entrance and exit for this subdivision before it even looks at any more plans to the proposed subdivision as it had guaranteed the residents when the first 20 – 30 homes were built (which was originally proposed to come out on Cardiff Road)
• Can you please tell me where the developer thinks they should make the sanctuary within the development for the southern brown bandicoots that are unable to be relocated and near extinction.
• I would also like a please explain how when this proposal is extending onto an existing subdivision why the same covenants and conditions do not seem to apply to this extension? The people who built in Nerigai Close all had to sign the covenant and keep there buildings within the guidelines of these covenants so how is this possible when it is an extension of this subdivision that these guidelines do not seem to apply to this proposed development?

These are just a few of the reasons that this proposal should not go ahead not only does this complex not fit within the existing lay out of the subdivision the proposed two storey buildings will create a wide range of problems for the residents backing onto and adjoining this complex in regard to their privacy, blocking their natural sunlight and let alone the headache you will be creating for your garbage truck driver who already has trouble picking up the bins from the end of Nerigai Close as it is.

This development would put a major strain on the already heavily burden infrastructure of the existing subdivision and I feel that council would be negligent if they let this proposal proceed without making any changes to the already failing infrastructure of the existing subdivision.

Meredith Harris

delivered to the planning authority

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