Letters to the Port Stephens Examiner

Streetscapes left bare

Are we headed for a desert streetscape within Port Stephens Council boundaries?

After the very recent loss of twelve vibrantly healthy Lilly Pilley (Acmena smithii) trees in Bareena Street, Raymond Terrace residents can only believe so.

In correspondence from Port Stephens Council which gave residents only a few days notice of impending destruction these fine trees, Council’s letter informs that in consultation with Ausgrid’s arborist to identify problematic or potentially hazardous to Ausgrid’s assets, they would be removed.

Further, the letter offers private land holders in the affected area the opportunity to receive a small native tree to be planted within the bounds of their private property.

Does this mean that Council no longer intends to replace street trees?

The line of trees in Bareena Street as with other streets and Adelaide Street were planted voluntarily by a group of young men from this town to beautify and enhance our environment 55 years ago.

It would have taken only a few minutes to destroy that initiative for the ‘benefit’ of the streetscape.

Wal Berry, Heatherbrae

Funding won’t fix decline

The State Government's grant for a koala hospital in Port Stephens will be great for the tourist industry but will do nothing to arrest the decline in numbers.

ON TRACK: Frank Ward of Shoal Bay believes Port Stephens has the potential to create a niche tourism market targeting cycling and mountain biking.

ON TRACK: Frank Ward of Shoal Bay believes Port Stephens has the potential to create a niche tourism market targeting cycling and mountain biking.

Unless they are resettled in a safe haven which is fenced, burnt off, cleared of dogs and with no roads or cars, koalas will become extinct. The current policy is to put them back where they were found. This has proved to be disastrous.  

Geoff Walker, Mallabula

Bay could be biking Mecca

I am sure that anyone interested in sport and jobs for young people in our community would be excited by plans outlined in the Examiner’s front page story by Sam Norris of the proposed $65 million development of the [Tomaree] sporting facilities.

To use these underutilised properties to bring tourists into the empty accommodation [in the area] is a great idea but I suggest that before the Mayor and Council go on their spending spree, they visit some other councils to see how this was done successfully. If we consider what is the fastest growing sport and recreation, cycling, there appears to be nothing in this plan to develop anything for this rapidly growing activity.

Many more push bikes are sold each year in this country than motor vehicles and these enthusiasts are looking desperately for somewhere to ride in safety and with a challenge. I recommend that Council contact the Derby Council in Tasmania where for a fraction of the $65 Million proposed here they have developed a cycling mecca where some 30000 people travel to each year.

This was developed by a dying community of just some 800 residents and it has revived the community and started a building boom to provide new accommodation for the guests from overseas and a host of new jobs to retain their youth. I am sure that this market could be be attracted to the Bay area over the whole year span as they ride winter and summer. I urge The Mayor and Councillors to visit Derby or at least view the video of the report done by ABC TV on Derby before spending too much on their proposal.

Frank Ward, Shoal Bay

Unity makes for progress

I think I have found out how to get the council to listen to community projects - just include tennis courts and the Mayor will be on your side.

But being fair dinkum it seems under his leadership Council is on the right track on most projects and continue to listen to, and have the interests of the community in their decisions.

Port Stephens would have been further advanced on many projects in the past if there had been a united council under Mayor MacKenzie.

Gerry Mohan, Shoal Bay