CLARENCE VALLEY COUNCIL - YAEGL COUNTRY
After experiencing extreme flooding in 2022, Yamba is facing multiple developments that will fill in flood prone land exacerbating flood risks for the rest of the community and place even more pressure on emergency services in future floods.
The West Yamba Urban Release Area is located on a 127 hectare site a few hundred metres South of Yamba road that was rezoned in 2010 by Clarence Valley Council. Most of the land is currently zone R1 general residential with developers seeking approval to build up to 1,500 residential lots which will see more than 270,000 truckloads brought in to fill flood prone areas. As of November 2022 161 lots over 3 stages, 193 manufactured home 53 seniors units and 2 lot subdivision (fill and construction not started) have all been approved.
The Park Avenue Retirement Village proposal is located on a 6.6 hectare lot on the northern side of Yamba Road (Lot 101 DP1228576, No. 8 Park Avenue, Yamba). The area had previously received approval in 2002 for wetland and floodplains to be filled up to 2.8 metres.
The Northern Regional Planning Panel approved an increase to 3.1 metres and the construction of dwellings upon flood prone land in October. This is despite an independent peer review of Yamba’s Flood Emergency Management Plan found it does not account for climate change and therefore did not account for the peak flood levels the site will experience.
WHERE IS IT UP TO?
Hometown Park Ave has approval from the NRPP for more fill, 136 ‘moveable’ homes and clubhouse. The infilling of land has begun despite a lack of a masterplan (including stormwater drainage. Local residents are calling for a moratorium on landfilling and further development until the plans can be assessed.
Four developments on the West Yamba floodplain have been approved with three sites continuing to be filled while one is yet to commence. One site already filled continues to seek approval for a 295 lot subdivision. Orion Drive Palm Lake Resort is fast being filled for construction for 78 Seniors homes and clubhouse.
WHAT’S AT STAKE?
- Approximate area to be cleared: 133.65 hectares
- Flood-prone: The site is extremely flood-prone. Infilling to raise the height has displaced stormwater, which pools around the development and has already contributed to the flooding of previously unaffected nearby homes. The lack of a sufficient stormwater management plan is of significant concern to many in the community, especially following the severity of the 2022 floods.
- Catchment of Lake Wooloweyah: Lake Wooloweyah catchment is a crucial part of the area and is listed by the Healthy Rivers Commission as being under significant threat.
- Insufficient road infrastructure: With only one access road to the town, the increase in population posed by these developments will increase traffic and place severe stress on disaster evacuations.
WHO’S FIGHTING IT?
- Clarence Environment Centre
- Clarence Valley Conservation Coalition
- Clarence Valley Watch Inc
- Keep Yamba Country
- STOP THE FILL YAMBA
- Yamba Community Action Network,