November 25 - December 1, 2018: Issue 385


Extension on Submission Period for Proposed lease of green space thoroughfare adjoining Careel Creek 

Community members have expressed concern this week regarding the proposed lease of 547.8 sqm of land to provide a fenced school playground extension at North Avalon.

The proposal by the school to expand its current school land holdings was not publicised where community members could see it and many reacted with surprise once they knew. Consequently the public exhibition period and opportunity to make a submission was extended this week until Sunday December 2nd, along with signage being placed in the adjacent area where passers-by may read it.

The land extends from the Barrenjoey Montessori buildings to the junction of the creek and yellow brick road pathways. The land currently features a council bush regeneration area and open grass.

The former Pittwater Council was aware of the important of protecting and enhancing the road reserve which is part of an estuary rehabilitation area. The road reserve adjoining 2B Tasman Road was cleared of exotic species and, with community support, the area was planted with local native trees and shrubs to increase the amenity of the area and to help local wildlife and the purity of the creek environs. 

Reversing the action of the previous Pittwater Council and the wishes of the local community by approving the alienation and privatisation of public land in such a significant area is considered unacceptable by residents. 

It has been pointed out that Avalon PS and Maria Regina use public land across busy roads without fencing and alienating it for private use, and that the Montessori school has such council land free on their eastern boundary. Residents have seen the Barrenjoey Montessori children and their teachers happily playing there often.

Barrenjoey Montessori School has been at its present site since 1990, the land originally being part of the Barrenjoey High School campus. Increased demand for places led to an expansion with the addition of an extra classroom in 1997, a $250,000 government grant secured in May 2009 (BER) resulted in a 2nd classroom being constructed on the site by the end of 2010.

Although the proposed lease is called 'road reserve adjoining 2B Tasman Road, Avalon Beach' most people recognise it as green open space - as shown in the location photograph at the top of this page.

However, under section 153 of the Roads Act 1993, 'A roads authority may lease land comprising a public road (other than a Crown road) to the owner or lessee of land adjoining the public road if, in its opinion, the road is not being used by the public.'

Under section 154 of the same Act, Public notice is to be given of the proposed lease, identifying the 'public road' to which it refers and also notify the public that anyone may make a submissions regarding the proposed lease.

Viola! The red section shows the area proposed to be fenced off along with green connectivity corridor put back through the efforts of bushcare volunteers. 

The above, the 'lease plan' along with a surveyors drawing commissioned by the school, 'the site plan', and 'Council hereby gives Public Notice of its intention to consider a lease for a term of five (5) years for the land adjoining 2B Tasman Road, Avalon Beach known as Lot 2 Deposited Plan 793596.' are available on the same webpage where you may Have your say - Online and In writing to the CEO, Northern Beaches Council, PO Box 82, Manly NSW 1665, marked "Proposed lease 2B Tasman Road, Avalon Beach".

Visit: Proposed lease - road reserve adjoining 2B Tasman Road, Avalon Beach (Barrenjoey Montessori School)