New South Wales
My principal objections to the Open Water Surf Facility (SSD-7942-Mod-1) are:
1. As a local resident immediately impacted by (living under 500m from the proposed development) I have not been contacted by, nor engaged by the developers of the proposed Open Water Surf facility, before this revised development application. Therefore, I do not believe adequate and responsible consultation has been afforded to residents potentially impacted by this proposal. In the applicant’s "Statement of Support" document they claim that their application "..will not have an adverse impact on the street scape or surrounding properties. (page 5)." Before this revised DA, no attempt has been made by the developers to consult with adjacent residents, thus this claim in their Statement of Support is untested by any independent authority and based solely on the applicant's opinion. As a resident in a building specifically identified in the development applicant's own noise assessment study, their lack of reasonable consultation is disappointing and doesn't imbue trust or confidence that they have gone about making their business case in an objective and reasonable manner that properly and fairly identifies all of the likely impacts on the community and environment.
2. The area immediately surrounding and adjacent the proposed development area for the Open Water Surf Facility (SSD-7942-Mod-1) is of significant natural conservation value and includes habitats for endangered and vulnerable species including Green and Golden Bell frogs and Latham's Snipe (as well as other migratory shore birds). In the applicants submission, I see no environmental impact study that specifically references the potential impact of this development on these habitats. This is in direct contradiction of the requirements for planning under the National Light Pollution Guidelines (2020). It is a significant concern that the important habitats of a variety of species within 20kms of this proposed development, have not adequately been identified and then considered by the applicant under the National Light Pollution Guidelines for Wildlife (2020). These guidelines specifically ask that consideration be given to the management of artificial light on wildlife - "any action or activity that includes externally visible artificial lighting, should consider the potential effects on wildlife..(page8)”. This concern is further exacerbated by the applicant’s stated desire to open the facility from 5.00 am to 12.00 pm - therefore the use, particularly in winter, of artificial light may well have an adverse and ongoing impact on species in habitats immediately adjacent to the proposed area of development.
3. Under the "Protection of the Environment Operations Act 1997 (POEO) Act”, residents immediately adjacent the proposed development are afforded regulatory protection that ensures residents will not be adversely impacted by either new or existing noise-producing developments. Further, under the requirements of State and Planning Infrastructure SEPP, the consenting development authority must ensure that appropriate measures have been taken to ensure the following noise levels are not EXCEEDED: (a) in any bedroom in the building - Laeq 35 dB(A), at any time between 10.00 pm and 7.00 am and/or (b) anywhere else in the building (other than a garage, kitchen, bathroom or hallway) Laeq 40 dB(A) at any time. To the best of my knowledge, no independent work has been undertaken that provides this assurance for the control of noise pollution form this proposed development. The developer's own Noise Impact study not only fails to include specific measurements within adjacent residential buildings, but there is also no measurement of the noise impact of externally played music or external announcements arising from the proposed development. The applicant’s Noise Impact Study has been conceived under the presumption that all venue music noise will be ambient and will only emanate from inside a function center. This is not a comprehensive noise impact assessment study as it excludes (a) outdoor music and (b) outdoor public announcements. Also, the assessment of likely road noise increases, particularly during hot summer days, is not adequately accounted for in the developer's noise impact report. It is also of significant concern that the report prepared by Stantec Australia Pty LTd on behalf of the developer, conveniently models the impacted noise levels at less than 32 dB(A), just 10% below the regulatory maximum for residential dwellings. With such a small margin of error, and major exclusions in the preparation of the noise impact study, it is critical that this study of potential noise pollution undertaken on behalf of URBNSURF, is independently assessed, as the results do not seem to be based on ALL likely/reasonable noise associated with the "successful" operation of the proposed development.
4. The proposed operating hours for the Open Water Surf Facility (SSD-7942-Mod-1) are NOT reasonable and appropriate given the proximity of the proposed development to a major residential area and the concerns around ongoing noise. The proposed operating hours according to the developers acoustic report are: Sunday - Thursday 5am to 10 pm and Friday to Saturday 5am to 12 am. According to the Environmental Planning and assessment Act (1979), local residents are afforded protection from offensive noise that 'interferes unreasonably with (or is likely to interfere unreasonably with) the comfort or repose of a person who is outside the premises from which it is emitted.' This requirement has been tested time and again in NSW courts and court orders to stop offensive noise or prevent noise from occurring, are regularly sought and successfully enacted. I believe such operating hours should they be approved, would contradict both the intent and spirit of Environmental Planning and assessment Act (1979). I further believe it is a reasonable expectation that the operating hours of the proposed Open Water Surf Facility be bought in line with other attractions operating close to residential areas in Sydney. For instance in 2019 Luna Park operated between 11.00 and 16.00 on Mondays; Fridays and Saturdays between 11.00 and 22.00 and on Sundays between 10.00 and 18.00. Given these operating hours were agreed after many and protracted court actions by local residents, they seem a good guide as to what is reasonable, at least in the eyes of the courts. Furthermore, I know of no other venue in Australia that would be permitted to operate in such close proximity to a residential area, for up to 19 hours a day - this is neither reasonable nor fair.
5. There does not appear to have been any consideration given to the likely impacts of the proposed development on local traffic, or any plan to mitigate these. Given the proximity of the entrance to the proposed venue to one of two major entrances to Newington (Avenue of Oceania), there is likely to be significant traffic congestion arising at peak periods of use of the venue, interfering with local access for residents.
6. Finally - I see no indication in the developer's application for "Special Events" provisions in the proposed operation of the Open Surf
Water Facility. I am very much aware of the attractiveness and profitability of festivals, special music events, weddings etc. Thus it is essential that there is a fully transparent process that local residents can be confident in, that special dispensations for the operation of this proposed facility will NOT be granted, outside of the agreed development consent guidelines.