Port Stephens Council drafts a list of capital works projects across three wards

RALLY: Anna Bay residents turned up in droves to rally behind a call for Port Stephens Council to construct a footpath between Gordon Close and the shopping village.
RALLY: Anna Bay residents turned up in droves to rally behind a call for Port Stephens Council to construct a footpath between Gordon Close and the shopping village.

More than $1 million in improvements to Anna Bay's infrastructure and pathways would be part of a $15 million proposed splurge by Port Stephens Council over the next financial year.

The works, spread across all three wards, have been flagged by Mayor Ryan Palmer in a renewed push to get high priority projects moving along following the rejection in May by IPART of council's proposed Special Rate Variation.

In a notice of motion was passed at Tuesday night's council meeting, Mayor Palmer said there had been an obvious need for more infrastructure and services as a result of the SRV community consultation process.

"We can't do everything but we can fund a smaller list of projects that can be leveraged by other means such as property sales, development contributions, burrowings and investments," he said.

Mayor Palmer said that the list was flexible and to ensure public input the council would embark on a community roadshow where council staff would join ward councillors for a series of drop-in sessions.

The sessions will take place:

  • Monday, July 8, at King Park, Raymond Terrace
  • Thursday, July 11, at Soldiers Point Hall
  • Monday, July 15, at Medowie Community Centre
  • Wednesday, July 17, at Karuah Hall
  • Monday, July 22, at Elizabeth Waring Room, Tomaree Sports Centre and;
  • Wednesday, July 24, at Tanilba Bay Hall

"In addition to the information sessions, the council will be holding one-on-one conversations with a range of community groups, as well as discussing hot topics which residents feel are impacting on their communities," Mayor Palmer said.

The mayor said that following the July consultations, a final list of projects and defined funding sources would go back before the council to be endorsed at the August 27 meeting.

Included in the draft list of projects are $700,000 for new pathways from Gordon Close to Anna Bay shops plus the 200m missing link along Gan Gan Road between Anna Bay and Boat Harbour.

A further $350,000 has been earmarked for the area's town centre.

At a protest rally last Friday attended by residents of the three seniors living housing developments in the vicinity of Gordon Close, Anna Bay spokesperson John King said that he was pleased with the outcome offered by Mayor Palmer, who attended alongside colleagues Sarah Smith and Glen Dunkley.

"I called the meeting as a last-ditch attempt to influence council in our endeavour to get a commitment for the footpath. For 15 years we have been calling for this work to allow residents to access the shopping centre by foot, bicycle or mobility scooter," Mr King said.

"This is an 80 km/h road where b-double trucks enter and exit at pace. By council's own admission some 311,000 tourists flocked to Birbui Beach during the surf lifesaving season, many arriving in tourists buses and many end up lost in Gordon Close."

Mr King said here had been two recent incidents that have highlighted the need for a concrete footpath, involving one woman who broke her wrist in a fall on her way to the shops and another breaking her ankle.

Also included on the council wish list are:

  • Shared pathways for Lemon Tree Passage and Fern Bay
  • $2 million for Tomaree sports complex amenities building
  • $1.4 million for stage one of the Donald Street east carpark demolition
  • $1 million for Raymond Terrace town centre improvements
  • $1 million for road upgrades in west ward and
  • $1.2 million for Hinton's Stuart Park clubhouse upgrade

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