Photo: Jason Mumford
The parcel of land referred to as ‘Dr Stewart’s Farm’ on the Coast Road south of Skennars Head is getting closer to being developed.
According to John Truman, Group Manager Civil Services at Council, ‘An application for subdivision has not been made to Council, however from pre lodgement discussions we understand an application will be formally lodged with Council in the near future.’
One of the last green spaces in this part of our Shire, the management of the development is crucial. With hundreds of new residents expected to be living in the new estate, access to the beach, road safety and crossing will become a real issue.
Council has always maintained its position in favour of a roundabout, however at the February Council meeting Cr Jeff Johnson moved a motion that: ‘Council reaffirms its longstanding preference for the installation of a two lane roundabout at the intersection of Headlands Drive and The Coast Road.’
After advice from staff about not ‘prejudging a DA’ the motion was not seconded and fell by the wayside.
It is feared by some residents that the developer may push for traffic lights, rather than roundabout and underpass.
But Mr Truman reaffirms Council’s preference for a roundabout.
‘The DCP sets out Council’s preferred design is for a roundabout. The developer has been investigating a design involving traffic lights and Council will be obliged to assess the merits of traffic lights if this is included in the proposal from the developer,’ he said.
According to local resident Lee Middleton, ‘I am a long term Lennox resident who is very concerned about the type of development which may be put in place in the Skennars Head in the very near future. I think this is issue is going to the biggest issue facing Lennox in over a decade. This development has the ability to breakdown the unique fabric and feel of Lennox Head, the very thing that makes it special.’
Ms Middleton also outlined her concerns about the commercial precinct that will be part of the development.
Mr Truman told The Lennox Wave that in keeping with the DCP for the area, the development, which includes a commercial element, will be sensitive and appropriate for a coastal area like this.
‘A neighbourhood centre is proposed for the area and this will include some commercial space. The Council’s vision and objectives for the neighbourhood centre are provided in the Development Control Plan for this estate.
The DCP states the following:
The neighbourhood centre is to be developed with the following characteristics:
- Relate strongly to the new residential area while servicing the wider urban catchment inlcuding the residents of the existing Headlands Estate and visitors to Sharpes Beach;
- Be developed using subtropical building design principles and in a manner which is adaptable to a variety of future uses;
- Enhance the ‘gateway’ to the development
- Have a strong coastal character typical of Northern Rivers coastal hamlets and villages, and:
- Be easily accessible via safe public pathways from the coastal parkland, new and existing residential areas and Sharpes Beach.