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Submission for: Western Harbour Tunnel & Warringah Freeway Upgrade


saving sydneys trees

MAROUBRA, New South Wales


SST Submission re: Western Harbour Tunnel,
Saving Sydneys Trees (SST) Object to this Proposal.
Though relatively “young” SST is a community based, not for profit Association that draws its data base from over 12 thousand of the Community, many of those in the Greater Sydney Area as well as interstate and some International followers. We have a regular Facebook following in excess of 9,000 and more when certain issues present.
The West Connex roadworks, along with our foundation on Anzac Pde. through the loss of the Community Canopy and Amenity caused by the CBD and South East Light Rail Infrastructure Project, has presented as one of the major issues of dissatisfaction and outcomes for the Community at large in Sydney.
These two significant works, in terms of imposition and diminishing the Environment and the Health and Well being to the community is documented in the decline in Air Quality in Greater Sydney and the increase in Scientifically linked Health issues on the increase in our population and most importantly youth and presents a significant risk to our future generations.
State Budget allocations to combat these Health issues of: Mental Illness; Respiratory related illnesses; Asthma and Allergies; Carcinogenic Emissions and Pollution linked Cancers; Obesity; Heart Disease; Deaths, are all quite well researched and bear out the acceptance in Science based forums, for no further need to study, but rather implement the necessary changes. They undeniably indicate, that with the depletion of the Public Assets of its Significant and Protective Tree Canopy these depletions within existing development design and process is a contributory factor. A clear indication that better approaches are needed in the way we approach ALL development.

SST, continues to point out that these Budgetary and very real COSTS that are currently missing from The Cost Benefit Analysis process. An Accountability omission with great detrimental outcomes as we are now witnessing, as our Premier keeps trying to plant at Tax Payers expense, to try and make up for the losses, while at the same time allowing development to deplete. Clearly false economy and ineffective as our established and most productive canopy is being taken at an alarming rate. This is but another such proposal.

This Western Harbour Tunnel, will see more than 7 hectares of Vegetation removed across a number of sites.

The Beautiful Yurulbin Park, Birchgrove is one of Australia’s “Seminal Landscapes”. It is to be turned into a Temporary Construction Site, much like what was witnessed at Wolli Creek and Sydney Park in the West Connex early stages, and indeed many works over the past 4 years, with little to no effective respect or care being shown. This Yurulbin Park recognised for “its Local historic aesthetic and technological significance and of local social significance as an open park that retains evidence of early use and character of the area and as a foreshore park established in the 1970’s”. This, will be as stated a building site “Dumping ground” with all the negative and restorative costs associated with that use. We look to a better option and indeed, plan.
Water quality impacts have also been indicated as an important and negative impact, that leaves the Public exposed.
With projected population growth figures for Sydney on the rise, such established areas are at a Premium Asset Status for a Resilient City. This seems absent in consideration in these proposed works
Existing Vegetation and reliant Fauna also seem to have been absent from this plan, with not least being the existing Human residents who inhabit this tranquil and special place. One only has to visit the site to ask oneself…”Why on earth would you do this?”. It flies in the face of all that the Government and Greater Sydney Commission specify: Green Corridors, Livability, sustainability, Resilience, Protection and recognition of these Public Assets, Climate cooling and mitigation needs, etc. etc.

It breaches the expectations in the Objectives of the National Forest Policy (1992/95) of which the Urban Forest is becoming an increasing part, and indeed the Clean Air Act.
We feel that a number of significant and important errors in Scoping and Design of this project have occurred. That costs are blowing out and the Public Amenities and Livability of this City is being diminished by this style of planning.

We cannot endorse this Project and given the number of forced acquisitions across the West Connex construction so far and those proposed here, we ask that a halt and re-examination of the outcomes in line with Best Practices and Protections, expected by the public be immediately looked for, and implemented.

Most Sincerely
Margaret Hogg
Saving Sydneys Trees