TVC GENERAL MEETING 4 PM, SUNDAY 26th NOVEMBER 2023

 

Attendees: Ray Smith, John Mebberson, Tony Horneman, Paul Tuckerman, Stephen Le Bas, Elliot Stein, Annette Jones, Cathy Bloch, Neil Walker, Stephen Young, Kaye Smith, Chris Hill, Steve Dillon, Susannah Cavill, Vicki Potter, Lynne Parker, Catherine Philps, Glenn Durrance, Angela Penhallow, John Penhallow, Cr. Richard Martin, Janice Lum, Colin McLoughlin, Matt Theris, John Creswick, Judy Bourke, Ross Deaden, Margaret Dearden

Apologies: Maryanne Stuart, Mary Ellen Durrance, Murray Jones, Ryan Park, Ken Clunas

1. Welcome by President

Welcome extended to all. Ray showed members the ‘Community recognition statement’ that was presented to the TVC by the Member for Heathcote, Maryanne Stuart for the 33 years of service to the community. Ray acknowledged the support and assistance provided to the TVC by Maryanne and Cr Richard Martin over the last 12 months, which has been most appreciated.

Ray welcomed presenters Colin McLoughlin from the Austinmer Rural Fire Service and Matt Theris from Anglicare.

2. Acceptance/amendments to the minutes of the last meeting

Moved –Paul Tuckerman; Seconded – Chris Hill

3. Secretary's Report

28 emails have been received at the new TVC email address since our last meeting, covering a range of issues - McCauley Lodge, Anglicare Seniors Living Development at Bulli, Wilkies Walk, relocation of Austinmer RFS and Bush Fire Preparedness as examples. There continues to be a lot of issues.

As members are aware the TVC has developed a good relationship with our new member for Heathcote, Maryanne Stuart. Maryanne continues to attend our meetings and keeps in regular contact with the TVC, of which we are grateful.

The TVC continues to keep members abreast of local issues and has raised a number of issues with Wollongong City Council (WCC). This includes the refurbishment of the Aaron Beath Stand in Thomas Gibson Park. We are still awaiting a response. Once received the minutes will be updated to reflect the response.

The TVC continues to advocate for the construction of the link road to the proposed Anglicare Seniors living development. This is essential as having one access road in and out is not practical, especially given the extra cars that will drive through McCauley’s Estate from the Seniors Living site via Wrexham Road. In the case of an emergency rapid response and movement of people from the site is essential, so additional access is vital.

The TVC email address has changed. It is now This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

ACTION: Response from WCC about Aaron Beath Stand, received post meeting date:

The draft scope of works involves the demolition of the current building and replacement with a new sporting facility including: amenities and change rooms which include accessible facilities; kiosk; storage spaces; First aid room / referees’ room; accessible car parking; rain harvesting; concrete perimeter path and lighting. No word on when it is anticipated to start.

4. Treasurer’s Report

Bank account     $2282.25 (This includes 3 month’s interest of $0.06) Planning Alerts funding did not transfer, so $52.75 returned to account.

Cash in hand     $11.70

Total Funds         $2293.95

No further credits or debits since the last meeting.

5. Graffiti Report

Since the TVC Meeting 23 September, graffiti attacks continue around Thirroul and Thomas Gibson Park - 22 reports. About the same number reported at the last TVC meeting (21). The most common tag is ‘Quota’, which appears in Thomas Gibson Park almost weekly. If anyone knows the person responsible, please make a report to police.

If residents see graffiti, please report it to council (details below). Alternatively, you can remove the graffiti with ‘Graffiti Remover’ spray available from Bunnings. Follow the directions on the bottle. Thanks to TVC members who continue to volunteer to clean or overpaint the graffiti. Council recently supplied a 4-litre tin of dark grey paint to overpaid tags in Station Street opposite St Michael’s Primary School. Thanks is extended to WCC for this.

Ross reported that WCC supplies graffiti wipes and he will lend them to anyone if they want to try them. These work best on signs or smooth surfaces. Alternatively, you can apply for a cannister of 80 wipes via ‘Report an issue’ page - https://www.wollongong.nsw.gov.au/my-community/report-an-issue/graffiti.

Report graffiti crime to:

a.   Call the Police on 131 444 to report graffiti attacks. Call 000 if you see graffiti crime in progress.

b.   Contact WCC via:

Phone on (02) 4227 7111, to request graffiti removal and record the incident.

Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Submit graffiti reports via Council’s website https://wollongong.nsw.gov.au/my-community/safety/community-safety/graffiti

6. Garden report

A couple of the garden committee had a planting day in Jackson Park, but it has stopped raining since, so no more done. There is a small bucket in the tap bed, for watering purposes. The bed near the tap was given a rather drastic clean-up after trampling, but now growing well, and the trees are finally doing well.

At Grannie’s Garden, there is still no word from WCC about re-landscaping (but promise of a meeting pre-Christmas). Plants on the front shop-side bed are regrowth from previous summers (tubers, unable to be removed without a Digger), and will do well until it gets too dry. The long bed is impossible, and will be left alone until the weed problem is sorted by Council. For the rest, daisy plants now in, and it looks fairly tidy.

Council has been asked to clear the drain in the bottom corner, as it needs some heavy work. It blocks the water egress and during recent heavy rain, there must have been 20cm deep water caught there as the watermark was still visible the next afternoon.

The condition of the garden on the ramp that runs alongside the railway line was discussed. Local residents have attempted to beautify the strip with plantings. However, these are often run over by commuters parking to close to the gardens. To prevent this, it was suggested that a timber barrier be constructed around the garden beds. The TVC will prepare a letter to Council about this matter.

If anyone wants to join the Garden Committee please email – This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

ACTION: TVC to write to Council with the suggestion of construction of a timber barrier to protect the gardens.

7. DA report

There are currently 4 DAs on exhibition for Thirroul – one is for a business operating from a home, 2 for demolition and construction of single houses and one for alterations and additions. A review of these did not identify any major variation requests. Plus, a check with neighbouring residents did not identify any major concerns.

McCauley Lodge – An email was sent to Council on 17th November asking when residents might be able to get access to the 'Statement of Facts and Contentions' (SoFAC) prepared by Council relating to the redevelopment of McCauley Lodge and Tasman Court in Tasman Parade, Thirroul. From experience it isn’t until a few weeks before the scheduled hearing. This can be granted by Council, or via Council’s lawyers, Marsden’s. The TVC was informed that Council would check with Marsden’s and get some advice on providing a SoFAC copy and how soon that can be made before the hearing. We are awaiting a response. Once received the minutes will be updated, and advice sent to the local residents around the proposed development.

DA in Bulli – Although not in Thirroul, this DA is important as there are a number of variation requests for this DA, some of which will set an undesirable precedent if approved. It is for a large single dwelling at 18 Blackall Road, Bulli, just across from Sandon Point and has gained the attention of the Mercury. Two swimming pools are planned - one out back and the other a one-metre-deep lap pool on the first-floor balcony at the front of the house, coming off an open terrace. This does not comply with the rules about swimming pools which state they have to be as close to ground level as possible and any decking cannot be more than 600 millimetres above ground level.

An underground garage is also proposed, which would essentially make it a 3-storey development in an R2 zoned area. In addition, it also encroaches on the required rear and side setbacks. Members were asked to have a look at this DA with the view to making a submission to Council – DA 2023/574. Closing date is Friday 1st December. Here is a link to the DA:

https://wcc.t1cloud.com/T1Default/CiAnywhere/Web/WCC/Compliance/ApplicationOnNotificationMyEnquiry?f=P1.COM.APPNOTIF.ENQ&h=f4ve6QJDHJ&t=1611F961&suite=PR&pagekey=20231128180041.

Wilkies Walk - The draft planning agreement was exhibited. Now awaiting a decision.

Former Bulli Hospital site - Redevelopment plans for Bulli Hospital have been placed on public exhibition. Landcom has lodged plans with WCC and they will be on exhibition until 6th December. Please find below the link to the DA:

https://wcc.t1cloud.com/T1Default/CiAnywhere/Web/WCC/Compliance/ApplicationOnNotificationMyEnquiry?f=P1.COM.APPNOTIF.ENQ&h=fV6wEXZy4U&t=1614B40C&suite=PR&pagekey=20231130194009

Parking remains to be an issue on Hospital Road. It does not appear that parking for the hospital will be allowed on the old hospital site. There are a number of options currently under consideration to help relieve the problems currently being experienced. Cr Martin has a motion before Council for the upcoming Council meeting about parking on Hospital Road.

Councillor Richard Martin stated that he is proud to be a part of Ward One and to work with the TVC and complimented the TVC on its work.

He has been speaking with Council about the traffic issues and working with Transport for NSW (TfNSW) to get things right for the community. Cr Martin and Member for Heathcote, Maryanne Stuart worked together to stop the planned changes to the clearways in Bulli. Cr Martin has taken back some of the TVC’s suggestions for alternative routes to TfNSW for its consideration. Work is also being done to ensure a second access is built to McCauley Estate.

ACTION: Annette will inform local residents about when to expect the ‘Statement of Facts and Contentions’ once advised.

Annette to email members with advice from Landcom about plans on exhibition – sent Weds 29 November.

8. Business on Notice:

Presentation by Austinmer Rural Fire Service by Colin McLoughlin

Colin was thanked for taking time to present to the TVC. He explained that the Austinmer RFS has to relocate. They have been situated at the top of Buttenshaw Drive for many years. The current premises is no longer suitable for a number of reasons:

  • The building is no longer fit for purpose as it doesn’t have adequate toilet facilities, change rooms, kitchen, training room or storage facilities.
  • The building requires major repairs, especially since the heavy rains in March 2021 which caused the ceiling to collapse and spread mould over the equipment.
  • Difficulties in accessing the station due to the increase in housing developments on Buttenshaw Drive. Since 2009 they have had to use the sirens when driving from the site to ensure clear passage.

Over the last 8 years the RFS has been working with WCC and Transport Asset Holding Entity (TAHE) plus, with local MP’s Ryan Park and Maryanne Stuart to secure identified land on Seafoam Avenue, Thirroul. A lease has recently been signed for the land. A copy of the plans will be provided by the RFS to TAHE shortly.

It was stated that it is important this be built, and built quickly, especially given the current climate situation. It will allow staff to have a proper functioning station from which to operate. Plus, it was acknowledged that it will have the added advantage of enabling more timely responses. This is because the trucks will not have to negotiate their way from Buttenshaw Drive towards Thirroul. This, we were informed, can add another 15 minutes to the trip.

The new location will mean the RFS can more easily access Lawrence Hargrave Drive via The Waves before heading down Phillip Street and onto LHD. It was stated there will be sufficient space for parking at the site.

While this new site will be better for the RFS concern continues regarding the impacts of LHD on the RFS’s effectiveness. The issue of ease of access along LHD, both north and south remains. Until this is addressed, including a second route to and from Thirroul, concerns about delays in responding to an emergency remain.

Update on Sandon Point Seniors Living Development by Anglicare by Matt Theris

Matt works for Stantec, which provides engineering, construction management and environmental services to businesses. He has been working on the Anglicare development for the last 18 months.

During this time Matt has represented Anglicare at a number of consultations about the development including drop-in sessions and the more recent information sessions. We thanked him for his time at the meeting. The consultation by Anglicare was noted and thanks extended to Anglicare for their continued engagement with the community about this project.

Aside from the community and community groups Anglicare and Stantec have met with other stakeholders, such as TfNSW – Roads and Maritime Services and RailCorp; Rural Fire Service (Development Assessment Team); all key utility authorities; Indigenous groups; WCC; Federal MP Alison Byrnes, and local MP’s Ryan Park and Maryanne Stuart. Throughout they have gathered a lot of opinions and information, all of which has helped in the development of the current Concept Plan that should go on exhibition shortly. Anglicare will advise once they have lodged the Concept Plan. Please note the Concept Plan Approval is schematic only and does not permit any physical works. A State Significant Development Application aims to be submitted to the NSW Department of Planning and Environment in the first half of 2024 that details the design for the site’s ultimate construction.

Anglicare propose to build 229 apartments for seniors living and 41 aged care rooms. There will be 24 separate apartment buildings, each with its own basement parking, lifts and security system. These apartment buildings will range from 2 to 4 storeys in height.

There was discussion about the bridge and link road, and members were advised that Stantec is currently looking into available grant opportunities that potentially could be accessed for Anglicare, particularly in the disaster resilience and infrastructure space. If approved this could mean that the bridge and link road can be delivered independently of the development by Anglicare, and hopefully early in the project. Stantec are working every available opportunity for Anglicare to build the bridge first, however, acknowledged that this is a commercial decision, as this will be costly to build. The concept plan modification does not propose to amend the condition of the concept plan requiring Anglicare to build the bridge in the first or second stage of the development.

Stantec is working on emergency access and egress planning, with one option being access via the Sturdee Avenue bridge. It is acknowledged that this railway bridge would not be suitable for continuous traffic. Hence the need for a secondary access point to the development.

ACTION: Annette to advise members when the Concept Plan has been lodged and when it is exhibited and how to access it.

Non-compliance by dog owners between Austinmer and South Thirroul Beach.

Judy Bourke communicated her concern about dogs being off leash in a timed off leash area. Thirroul Beach is an ‘Orange Zone’ which means dogs are allowed on the beach at set times, but they must stay on a leash.

Judy would like the TVC to write to Council requesting they increase the size of the signs at beaches, provide more education to dog owners, increase the number of animal compliance officers and their times, so they can be in place early in the morning when non-compliance is more prevalent.

Cr Martin stated that there are currently 2 full time compliance officers working for WCC covering the LGA. They have held meetings in parks to help educate dog owners.

ACTION: Judy to email the TVC with relevant information and a draft letter, so it can be forwarded to Council.

9. Other Business:

It was reported that the Integrated Transport Strategy for Central Wollongong should go on public exhibition in early 2024. Nothing will be done about Thirroul and Bulli till later.

The Secretary of NIRAG, Ross Dearden extended his thanks to the TVC, especially Annette, for the way that the NIRAG and TVC groups have worked together cooperatively over the year.

Meeting closed at 5.30pm and members were invited to participate in an end of year/Christmas celebration.

The next TVC meeting will be held at 4pm on Sunday 25th February at TRIPS Hall. All welcome.

The next NIRAG meeting will be held at 7pm on 7th February at Bulli Community Hall. All welcome.

 

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