Development application for a 30-year sand mine at Anna Bay has been lodged with Port Stephens Council

PUBLIC MEETING: Some of the residents who attended the public meeting hosted by Bob Lander held at Birubi Community Hall in September 2018.
PUBLIC MEETING: Some of the residents who attended the public meeting hosted by Bob Lander held at Birubi Community Hall in September 2018.

The development application for a 30-year sand mine at Anna Bay, whose owners are proposing to extract 50,000 cubic metres of sand a year, has been lodged with Port Stephens Council.

Details of the proposed mine were first revealed by applicant Tattersall Lander, acting on behalf of Hay Enterprises, to establish a sand quarry on land located off Nelson Bay Road behind the Baylife Church.

At a public meeting in September 2018, residents expressed concerns about the increase in the number of 35-tonne truck movements along busy Nelson Bay Road and traffic access to the site.

Details of the application are available on the council's DA tracker website and residents have until November 15, 2019, to make submissions.

According to the applicant, sand will only be extracted to ground level and that "no ground surface disturbance will occur as a result of the quarrying activity".

"Approximately 910 cubic metres of sand will be extracted per day up to a maximum of 50,000 cubic metres a year (for a maximum of 30 years). The application calls for 80 truck movements a day (40 movements in and 40 movements out)."

Asked if Port Stephens Council was concerned with the extra traffic proposed along Nelson Bay Road, a spokesperson said that given the application was still in its early stages, a detailed assessment of traffic related matters was yet to be complete.

"The application has also been referred to RMS, who are yet to provide comment," the spokesperson said.

The consent authority for the project lies with the Hunter and Central Coast Regional Planning Panel (HCCRPP).

"Council's [role] will be to manage and complete the assessment of the application and provide recommendations to HCCRPP for final determination. As the consent authority is the HCCRPP, neither council officers nor full council have delegated authority for the application."

According to the traffic impact statement provided for the applicant, "there is an electricity easement located east-west across the property and it is the migration and encroachment of sand from the Stockton Bight to the south that is the subject of this project proposal".

The heritage impact statement said that vegetation would be removed from the Anna Bay quarry and then mulched and used as ground cover within the caretaker's residence/ machinery shed compound as soil improver, "while the sand mine is in operation".

"The existing access road will be widened to up to 6m and consist of basic gravel construction (unsealed) with adequate drainage; limited ground disturbance is expected for minor drainage purposes. There is no proposal to excavate into the existing road as fill will be used to level the road."

The report says there are no listed heritage items within, or directly adjacent to, the site; there are no heritage significant built fabric identified on the site; there are no areas of archaeological potential for the recovery of heritage significant relics identified on the site; and there are no further non-Aboriginal (historic) heritage constraints for the proposed works.

The council spokesperson said that the environmental impact statement had been redacted on the DA tracker to protect sensitive and personal information.

Anyone wishing to make a submission on the proposal before November 15, 2019 can do so via email at council@portstephens.nsw.gov.au or write to PO Box 42 Raymond Terrace NSW 2324.

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