Eprapah Creek estuary rezoning for marine industry in Draft City Plan

Ecological significance of Eprapah Creek estuary threatened by Draft Plan (click to enlarge)

Ecological significance of Eprapah Creek estuary threatened by Draft Plan (click to enlarge)

It is disturbing to see the massive changes made to the marine precinct in Beveridge Road in the Draft Redlands City Plan 2015.

The Eprapah Creek estuary has always been recognised for its ecological significance in present and past Redland planning schemes.

There are good reasons for the protection granted to this area: its proximity to Marine National Park (the only one that abuts the Redlands mainland); a large listed Ramsar area just across the creek from the marine precinct, protected fish habitat reserves and the contribution of the fringing mangroves to the stability and water quality of Eprapah Creek.

Eprapah Creek - fringed with mangroves

Eprapah Creek – fringed with mangroves

It defies all logic to see the huge expansion of the footprint of this area proposed, especially when the area that will impact along the creek banks has more than doubled. This will potentially leave this whole reach of the creek industrialised with the loss of its protective fringing mangroves – just over the creek from the Point Halloran Conservation Reserve.

Not only does the Draft City Plan convert Conservation land into Marine Industry, it also uses the same assessment criteria as apply to the much larger precincts at Dunwich and Toondah Harbour. Such purposes as food and drink outlets, port services and seafood processing are clearly inappropriate in the Beveridge Road area.

Marine Habitat Overlay in the current Redlands Planning Scheme (click to enlarge)

Marine Habitat Overlay in the current Redlands Planning Scheme (click to enlarge)

The present Planning Scheme not only limits the footprint of the Beveridge Road Marine Activity Area but treats the area as a special case with the use of sub-areas as evidenced by the following extract from 4.13.7 Overall Outcomes for Marine Activity Zone Code:

The existing marine activity area
In sub-area MA2 – uses and other development minimise adverse impacts by – a. protecting the ecology of the adjoining coastal, tidal and sub-tidal areas, fish habitat reserve, and areas listed under the Ramsar Convention; b. protecting the water quality of Eprapah Creek or Moreton Bay; c. not requiring the dredging of the Eprapah Creek for all tide vessel access or the creation of further mooring basins; d. minimising the removal of coastal vegetation. Redlands Planning Scheme V7.

This “special case” protection is almost totally removed in the Draft City Plan.

Eprapah Creek Estuary is very small and vulnerable to impacts and so is only suited to small scale facilities providing access to the bay for a limited number of small, shallow draft vessels. The large scale of industrialisation in this sensitive area promoted in the Draft City Plan is incomprehensible given the restrictions on the site posed by its shallowness, the close proximity of the Marine National Park and Ramsar sites and the prohibition of dredging.

This appears to be another example of decisions being made in this City Plan with no regard to the local contextual background and the long-term consequences of these decisions.

If you care about Redland City’s marine environment, make a submission to the Council about this issue.

Consultation about the Draft City Plan closes on Friday 27 November.

Lynn Roberts
Eprapah Creek Catchment Landcare Association (President)

Please note: Offensive or off-topic comments will be deleted. If offended by any published comment please email thereporter@redlands2030.net

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8 thoughts on “Eprapah Creek estuary rezoning for marine industry in Draft City Plan

  1. Any further development that can have a negative effect on Eprapah Creek will also effect the Scout Associations property of Eprapah which is classified as a SCENE. a Scout Centre of Education for Education Nature and Environment. This is a world wide network of Scout properties eg Sweden, America UK, and the one at Victoria Point is the only one in SE Asia. The property of 43 hectares is open to the public, Scout Assn ask for a gold coin donation for upkeep of the 15 walking trails, boardwalks through the mangroves etc to see varieties of vegetation, butterflies and birds. Eprapah hosts up to 400 local and migratory birds throughout the year. The best entry for the walking trails is from Bunker Road. A small mob of swamp wallabies also live within the boundary, unfortunately quite often under attack from neighbourhood dogs. The water quality grades of Eprapah creek are already impaired when the yearly measurements are taken, more development or any type of industry effluent into the creek can only degrade the creek even more.

  2. A question for the Council.

    A proposal to rezone an area to permit a more intensive development than previously affects the property rights of both the landholders concerned and neighbours. For neighbours who have purchased there on the assumption that the current zoning will remain in place, an upward zoning can be a theft of their property rights for which they are not paid compensation. On the other hand, the owners of land that is upzoned can receive a windfall profit.

    Does Redlands Council intend to tax the land owners who will benefit from the rezoning? The act of rezoning is a gift to any landowners who benefit.

  3. We have lived in the Redlands for some 40 years and have watched this lovely place being destryed for profit. But while lestening and reading the comments etc i have to wonder who put these people in power, it was not us, was it you ?

  4. Zoning of any given area in Redlands can be changed overnight to give the go-ahead to whatever a developer wants to do with land to build on. Watched it happen in Capalaba when 29-37 Moreton Bay Rd Capalaba was changed from ‘Special Protection under Koala Coast Policy’ to ‘Çommercial’. Audience with Ombudsman brought no answers, As a result, Coolnwynpin Creek koalas are gone, platypus and water birds, gone. People too can no longer use the walkway as towering concrete walls line the creek bank frequented by social misfits. Only memories remain of a once beautiful wetland site before it was destroyed forever.

    • As a Redlands resident since 1986 and being familiar with how Coolnwynpin Creek used to be, I’m heart-broken at how much totally inappropriate development has occurred under this current City Council. The ‘ghetto’ of townhouses on Cleveland-Redland Bay Road adjacent to Faith Lutheran College is one case. Urban communities should have an appropriate mix of dwellings where all age groups and lifestyles are represented to foster understanding between younger and older residents.

  5. There seem to be so many proposals for inappropriate rezoning in the 2015 Draft City Plan that it is impossible for objectors to research and present a submission on every one. It has taken me three weeks of consultation with neighbours and online research to adequately cover the grounds for objection to the rezoning of our CN green space to low-to-medium density residential.

  6. Rezoning clearly a dumb idea. Remaining urban bushland of such high ecological value needs protection not industrial development. Death by a thousand cuts must be avoided if amenity, ecological and natural coastal processes are not to be utterly lost.

  7. The council only has a few months left within which to destroy our beautiful Redlands….. and they’re sure using every second they can! Come March 19th this council will be out and the stench of their destruction will still be in the air and in our view for years to come! Who the hell gave them open reign on doing whatever the hell they want? Reassigning zoned areas, from `protected’ to `open for development’, getting rid of heritage listed properties by “conveniently” forgetting to move on the properties to keep them for generations to come and how dare they develop our parks…. the parks of the people of this community. But, the absolute worst thing they are doing is selling off land that was bought by ratepayers money (not their money, but ours) for environmental purposes… and surprisingly it’s up for development.

    How dare they have their narrow sited views on `what’s best for the community’ and how dare they work tirelessly in destroying this gorgeous community. I think this is an absolute travesty and we need to have the power to say no to these people. Their token surveys and draft plans are put out for our say, but by the end of the process our wishes have been cast aside and they move on through with the development! We all know that these are token acts so why bother? Just be honest! Develop, develop, develop! That’s all they’re looking at doing and to hell with the consequences for the community members, wildlife and habitats. The Redlands Council are the worst type of scum to have been allowed to reign their terror on our community. They’re stripping, raping and pillaging from the community and the future community members and I think it’s disgusting. Karen you’re an absolute disgrace and it’s going to give me great pleasure to see you stumble in March!

    Maybe I’m looking at this too harshly. Maybe the people in Council don’t understand that if you develop around an environmental creek area, there’s going to be an impact and this impact can be catastrophic. The wildlife is destroyed. The plants and habitat are destroyed. The waterways become polluted and the fish die, which has an affect on the oceans, fishing industry and the beautiful creatures like dugongs, dophins and turtles. If the fisheries can’t supply food for the people, then the people move away and the community dissolves (this is a very basic explanation, but hopefully the council might read this and start to rethink some of their harsh decisions)…. I doubt it though! They just don’t give a rats! I used to think Christmas was the best day of the year, but now I think March 19th is looking pretty perfect!