A Town Planning Scheme amendment has been initiated to remove a marina as a permissible use under Point Grey zoning.
At the March Council Meeting, Shire of Murray Councillors considered research findings from the Australian Research Council Linkage Program as well as the suitability and adequacy of the current planning framework for the Point Grey development and marina.
According to Shire President Cr. David Bolt, concerns over environmental and financial risks associated with the Point Grey marina and marina channel, were exacerbated by the research findings which scientifically confirmed the declining health of the Peel Harvey Estuary, rivers and waterways.
The findings demonstrate that without a transformational approach to management, further reduction in rainfall and streamflow will likely see the system collapse, taking with it an estimated $3.35 billion of economic value to the Region.
“Policy requirements for coastal and bushfire management planning have also significantly evolved in recent years.
“Additionally, a state agency has yet to accept responsibility for the ongoing management of the channel, leaving the Shire responsible for the task which is well beyond its financial and workforce capacity, even with agreement from the landowner.
“These circumstances motivated Council’s resolutions, which among other decisions included initiating the scheme amendment and resolving to request that the Western Australian Planning Commission (WAPC) revoke the current Point Grey structure plan that shows a marina and marina village precinct.
“This will ensure that decision making is guided by a relevant and appropriate framework and will assist developer investigations into an alternative vision for the site which addresses the environmental sensitivities of the land and estuary as well as contemporary planning principles and issues,” Cr. Bolt said.
The scheme amendment was signed on Thursday 9 April and will now be considered by the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) and WAPC.
Public advertising of the scheme amendment is subject to the outcome of the EPA and WAPC review.
“It is likely that further research will be undertaken, given the significance of the Estuary, to clarify the extent to which the marina and channel development may aggravate the adaptation challenges currently being faced, with a report retuned to Council to consider whether a request be made to Australian and State agencies to amend environmental approvals,” Cr. Bolt said.
For further information, the previously confidential Council report is now available to view at murray.wa.gov.au.