We’re delighted that the independent Local Planning Panel, which met on 19 December to consider Council’s Amended DA for the removal of 21 trees at Figtree Park, resolved to refuse the application.  Their reasons were:

  • Insufficient details of proposed infrastructure works have been provided to justify removal of the trees as listed.
  • Insufficient detail has been provided in relation to any necessary removal of garden bed concrete edging within the structural root zones of retained trees.
  • Insufficient detail of the location and type of proposed fencing has been provided.
  • No detail has been provided for any work required to address the current drainage issues in the Park.
  • The proposal in its current form, is not considered to be in the public interest.

We are pleased that commonsense has prevailed and the LPP has agreed that there is not enough detail to justify why so many trees are being removed or to understand the extent and location of all the proposed infrastructure.
The Trust has been requesting full disclosure of Council’s Master plan, referred to in their DA and consultant documentation, in order that the purpose of this project can be fully understood by the community.
Council openly states this is just “stage 1 of a broader Council initiative to develop a community precinct within the heart of the Hunters Hill town centre.  The removal of trees is consistent with the master plan for the above mentioned works”.    So where and what is Stage 2?
So far Council has denied the existence of a Master plan implying that it is the consultant’s ‘Concept’ plan, but we believe this is because the Master plan involves the development of Gladesville Road, as detailed in the Property Strategy already rejected by the community. Disclosure about the extent of this publicly funded project is now essential if Council’s professed transparency is to be believed.