| Adult Eastern Pygmy Possum |
(photo Gavin Smith)
Check this link for rare and endangered animals in Warringah going going....
The development plans also include substantial excavations for stormwater ponds, pipes and roads in a fragile catchment area that drains ultimately into Manly Creek via Mermaid Pool the site of an important ongoing restoration project Mermaid Pool Restoration Blog
What makes this matter worse is that the community managed to save much of this same land in 1995 when a plan by Landcom to build a medium density housing project here was rejected and the land was ultimately incorporated into
Manly Warringah War Memorial Park. This is in an area currently earmarked for the fire buffer zone clearing. Development across the site has the potential to also disturb Aboriginal cultural heritage items.
[NB Apparently alternatives were explored through a feasibility study: Manly Vale Public School Upgrade - Gateway Business Case (2014). But this document is considered classified information and is not available for public view].
This is the environmental Education Bill as introduced by Dr Terry Metherall (NSW Liberal Government) in 1992 Hansard
Below is a link to a short film clip and some images of the fragile bushland that borders the school grounds and Manly Warringah War Memorial Park.
On 29th March 2016.Warringah Council voted unanimously NOT to willingly agree to a request from the Department of Education to acquire crown land in Manly Warringah War Memorial Park and Condover Reserve to enable a massive fire break to be established. Mayor Michael Regan said this in the Manly Daily on2.4.16 " Manly Vale Public School desperately needs an upgrade and the precious bushland of Manly Dam War Memorial Park (sic) needs to be protected. I was proud of Councillors this week who unanimously voted to oppose the sale of 16,000 sqm of Manly Dam wildlife corridor to the Department of Education for its school redevelopment plans. But why did we have to fight in the first place? Why can't the Department of Education find a design for the school that preserves the environment? Surely an investment in good design now, would reap enormous benefits for all in the long term-including teachers and students. Councillors and I call on the Department to rethink its plans.
Sadly moves to compulsorily acquire (and clear) land in Manly Dam Reserve and Condover Reserve are now proceeding.
(Sept 2016) After intense community and Council pressure the Department of Education is now modifying the plans and a new D.A. will be submitted soon. There are fears that the redesign will be of a minor and superficial nature. If the new school was built on the original footprint as was originally conceived, then the environmental destruction would be kept to a minimum.
(Nov 2016) I turns out that the modified plans will save only 0.35 hectares of bushland and will intensify the impact on the School's Outdoor Learning area. In fact new buildings will sit on top of the Eastern Pygmy Possum habitat ! Lobbying against this damaging proposal continues as we await a date for the Joint Regional Planning Panel review.
|Xanthorrhoea (Grass Trees)|
|Lambertia Formosa (Mountain Devil)|
|Sundew (Drosera Binata) Carniverous Plant|
|Xanthorrhoeas (Grass Trees)|
|Views Looking West Across to Manly Dam|
(Manly Warringah War Memorial Park)
2/ Sydney Water land belongs in park
A parcel of Sydney Water bushland at Kirkwood St, Seaforth was deemed surplus to requirements and consequently advertised for sale and subsequent development. This former Crown land had inexplicably been zoned R2 (low density housing) by Warringah Council (despite being surrounded by the park on three sides. After a flurry of protests, the land has currently been withdrawn from auction. The community is asking the NSW Premier and the Minister for Land and Water to transfer this land for incorporation in the War Memorial Park. Below is the property as advertised by Blackleys Estate Agents:-
A newspaper article,31.5.16, reports that the sale of this land has been put on hold "indefinitely" .Manly Daily The community will continue to work towards ensuring that the land is encompassed within the War Memorial Park.
3/ Will Council compromise the catchment?
Warringah Council has (very questionably) withdrawn the entire Warringah Aquatic Centre precinct from the War Memorial Park Management Plan and has an elaborate 'Master Plan" to develop and commercialise the area. At this stage there seems to be no consideration of the fact that this land is at the top of the sensitive Manly Dam catchment and that expansive areas of rare vegetation would need to be cleared to comply with modern fire safety regulations. It is also believed that this is still technically Crown land, and therefore, outside the jurisdiction of council to sub lease it. Council has now concurred that a much needed environmental impact study needs to be instigated before further action is taken (surely the high conservation value of the area has already been well documented) More details here:-
The new Northern Beaches Council is currently assessing tender submissions.
4/ Massive New Roadways are Destroying Wildlife Corridors.
Check out the plans for immense new freeways past the new French's Forest Hospital (which in itself has replaced a site of incredibly high ecological significance.
Another 6.1 hectares of bushland is earmarked to be flattened here, important wildlife corridors are being replaced by increased roadkill and the fragile Manly Dam Catchment will be exposed to increased siltation and stormwater pollution.
View the Biodiversity Assessment Report.
Check out this Guardian article on habitat loss and extinction