The NSW Planning Minister has signalled his support for a controversial development near Kiama on the NSW south coast, angering the local council.
Kiama Council was this week advised that following an independent review, the Minister for Planning and Homes, Anthony Roberts, supports the project, which involves the rezoning of rural land west of the Princes Highway between Saddleback Mountain Road to south of Weir Street, in South Kiama.
Council and community opponents of the mammoth housing development say the addition of potentially 400 homes would negatively affect the coastal town.
Councillors have already rejected the proposal twice before the NSW Minister for Planning launched an independent review.
The Department of Planning and Environment said “the proposal has strategic and site-specific merit and issues raised during consultation can be satisfactorily addressed”.
It said it had made minor changes to the proposal to address concerns and the matters raised by the independent review can be addressed by further master planning, preparation of a development control plan and the development of a DA assessment process.
The Department has instructed Council to implement the recommendations of the independent review.
Kiama Mayor, Neil Reilly and Deputy Mayor, Imogen Draisma say they are disappointed with the decision.
“Kiama Council wants to work with the NSW Government on an alternative to the current greenfield development attitude that permits unsuitable, unsustainable and unnecessary sprawl,” Mayor Reilly said.
“This will deliver poor social and health outcomes. The development is car dependant for almost every need, including schooling and shopping, leaving residents without cars isolated.”
Councillor Draisma said if the South Kiama Development proceeds it will place significant pressure on roads, schools, and community infrastructure.
“This formed the basis of community and Council objections, and we will continue to pressure the NSW government to address these concerns,” Cr Draisma said.
The NSW Government advice and report of the Independent Review will be considered at Kiama Council’s next meeting on 19 July.