Crystal balls and tree clearing in Redlands

Tree clearing in Ormiston

Tree clearing in Sturgeon Street, Ormiston this week

Letters to Redlands2030 this week are about coastal development, tree clearing and speculative ‘crystal ball gazing’ arguments being used to gain Council approvals for proposed developments.

Ormiston tree clearing

I received an urgent call Tuesday morning that large gum trees on two large blocks were being cleared.  I drove to Sturgeon Street Ormiston and witnessed the absolute destruction of large trees, chain saws cutting  the limbs and trunk  of the trees into pieces and branches were being loaded into the shredder, I could smell the eucalyptus leaves , it felt like the tears of the trees crying  as they were dying.

I  was shocked that Federal Member Laming had a large trailer parked in the front of the property.  During Mr Laming’s terms in Government he has made no attempt to lobby for stronger koala protection, or to have our koalas relisted from vulnerable to endangered.  Mr Laming is aware that our koala numbers are crashing, mainly due to tree cleaning and loss of habitat.  He makes a joke of our koalas and his claim to fame is that he ran in the koala run but didn’t even pay the entrance fee.

I have since become aware that last year these Ormiston property owners cut down 37 large gum trees.  This was a result of the amended Local Law 6 policy which in the past had given strong protection to our koala foods trees and other native trees.  Sadly in the last term Mayor Williams and her sheep amended the Local Law to give major relaxation to those who wished to remove these precious trees.

I also believe that this property has Council overlays over it, environmental protection and flood.  I bet there will be a push to have these two properties rezoned for high density in the draft planning scheme.

Last year when the trees were removed they claimed the trees were close to a fence, considering the blocks are acreage I wonder how that can be justified, but some weak council officer signed it off, due to the substandard revised policy.

This time I am lead to believe the developer has had a arborist’s report claiming the trees are diseased. I also believe that council officers claimed their hands were tied.  I think it is about time, that those Council people find new jobs and staff who are prepared to make informed independent decisions and question reports provided by property owners and developers.

This area is in the middle of a major corridor of koala movements. Ormiston has been always recognised as a major koala habitat, for many years the Department of Environment did lots of research in this same area and tagging of koalas

Is this what we will see during the drafting of the city plan, this site always has election signs, for some candidates from all levels of government.  I guess there is no free lunch.

Toni Bowler

Approvals based on crystal ball gazing

Crystal ball Photo: K.D. Schroeder

Crystal ball Photo: K.D. Schroeder

It is becoming increasingly obvious from scanning recent development applications that developers are making some wild assumptions about the future planning scheme.

Applications are being made based on assumptions that the Draft Planning Scheme 2015 and the Toondah Harbour and Weinam Creek PDA’s are a ‘fait accompli’. Examples are the application for units at the Grand View Hotel that exceed the legal height but the argument is posed that there will be higher units next door at Toondah.

Similarly the application for units at Weinem Creek assert the same – they are a stepping stone from low dwellings to the future high rise of Weinam Creek PDA.

Just today trees were felled at Ormiston in an Environmental Protection and flood area that is proposed to be changed to unit development under the Draft City Plan.

May I respectfully remind both councillors and officers that the PDA’s and the Draft City Plan 2015 are far from being set in stone and if the caring community of Redlands has anything to do with it – they never will be. It would be extremely unethical if planning approvals were granted on the basis of crystal ball gazing.

Margaret Hardy


Stop developing sensitive coastal areas

Collaroy storm damage Photo: Vimeo

Collaroy storm damage Photo: Vimeo

Looking at the damage to Sydney beaches last week reminded me of how much of its undeveloped foreshores disappeared in the 1960-70s.  It should ring alarm bells in Redlands.

It was a time when a few resilient residents fought to halt councils siding with developers, while most people trusted the system to do the right thing. Today the idea of turning low lying land or wetlands into a mega residential developments should be dismissed in Queensland as it would in NSW, Victoria and even Tasmania.

Flooding, coastal storms and coastal erosion causes great pain and suffering for those whose businesses or homes have been affected. Imagine the plight of 10 000 people stuck in the middle of Moreton Bay if a cyclone were to hit Brisbane.

But too often, by the time the damage is done the developer has moved on (Raby Bay like) and the ratepayers or taxpayers are left the pay the bill. Profits are secured and held away from claims for damages. In time it will become clear, again, that greed was the culprit.

The development mooted at Toondah Harbour has all the hallmarks of another Raby Bay, or another Collaroy.

When will the decision makers stand up and prohibit development in sensitive and vulnerable areas like that envisaged for the Toondah Harbour nightmare.

Julian Jones

Make koalas an election issue!

Redland City's koalas face a grim future

Redland City’s koalas face a grim future

A small group are trying to find out what the federal government is doing about legislation that protects koalas…once and for all.

An official report on the health of koalas has their numbers so low that it is possibly beyond recovery. The official ‘total Brisbane” population now is said to be between 710 – 1335. They are on their last legs.

The Member for Bowman emailed response to me on 13 May said koalas are not an election issue and to only expect his response to election matters.

Tree clearing in Ormiston

Tree clearing in Ormiston

Today this picture was taken by a passing motorist. The block is now almost cleared. It’s Sturgeon Rd Ormiston, home to the last few koalas.

Can I ask for as many people as possible write to Andrew Laming and make koalas an election issue. Use this picture or post this on your FB please?

Here is Andrew Laming’s email address

Please feel free to send him the photo and ask for him and his Party to commit to legislation that protects koalas.

Later, after taking the photo of trees being cut down, Mr Laming’s election advertising trailer disappeared, as had all signs of the once magnificent trees.

Mr Laming might not want koalas to be an election issue but he seems wary of being associated with destruction of their habitat.

The only solution in sight is that proposed by the Australian Koala Foundation, for Federal Government intervention by passing a Koala Protection Act 

Adelia B


Letters published by Redlands2030 – 17 June 2016

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

5 thoughts on “Crystal balls and tree clearing in Redlands

  1. The trail that was along the back of properties at Victoria point was in areas where there were no large trees removed. Many residents along this route had already cleared trees, dumped their grass clippings and garbage over their fences. Council cleared much of this up and the community along this area had tree plantings which enhanced the area. Some residents saw this area as their private back yard. I would not have approved any trail that would have cleared large trees. Any trail from the Villaworld development should have been assessed before any plans to clear large trees first. There was plans to save a large corridor of trees from Boundary Road down to Eprapah Creek, but sadly the plans were changed and those trees are not protected. The developer lobbied the Minister at the time, and the Government rolled over. I have been informed that Villaworld has cleared large areas of land near the creek already to put sewer lines into Council reserves. Where was the local Councillor when this was approved in the past 2 years, why wasn’t Cr Talty interested in the planning of these developments in such sensitive areas. There are many areas in Redlands where trails have been installed and gone around trees, and bridges built without any impact on vegetation. The bridge over Tingalpa Creek on Avalon Road, and other trails along Avalon Road have had not one tree removed, why would Council allow any developer to clear 10 metres either side of the bridge, what the hell was the councilor doing to allow this to happen. Instead of sitting in the Ivory Tower maybe Councillors should be getting out into the areas of development and seeing first hand the damage being caused and doing something about it.

    • Based on experience in other parts of the world I have learnt that native animals do not initially live symbiotically well with urban sprawl. Noise, pets and people dislodge these species from their habitat until the population becomes unsustainable.
      It is very apparent that Councils and those that they use to study habitat for reporting purposes either can’t or don’t want to understand this issue.
      The stress that urban sprawl creates for our native species is one reason why numbers are decreasing, something Redland City Council and past and present Councillors have been clearly told.
      Whether big trees are cut down or not and by who, Queenslanders have failed to stop the damage due to greed and criminal actions of a few.
      The excuse was used that the described paths were being built over existing main sewer lines. Why would you run a sewer line next to a creek containing Platypus habitat.
      From experience sewer lines rupture at some stage in their life cycles in this case direct into Eprapah creek which hosts several endangered species koala, swamp wallabies, sea eagles as examples.
      It’s time that past and present Counsillors and Ministers were held accountable for signing off such destruction.
      There is clear legislation to cover the protection of wildlife, this does not warrant preventing development, but does and should control the way in which it’s done.
      This type of development is done successfully in Germany and Scandinavian countries for example.
      Queensland development is achieved by cutting corners to save a buck and maximise profit.
      Counsellors and Ministers you are running out of time on this issue towards having to explain the anomalies and resolve the issues.

  2. Further to what Jan says, I too listened to Env Min Greg Hunt interviewed on ABC radio, horrified hearing name of Fed Member for Bowman Andrew Laming, knowing he does not support koala conservation, along with developer friends, or we would not have been subjected this week of seeing his huge photo/sign in front yard of home where mature food trees were being cut down and mulched. All 3 tiers of government do and say nothing about using the $12 million earmarked for saving, after 80% koalas now extinct in SEQ, our remaining koalas from extinction except to say a panel of experts…all done in past years along with mapping…will be selected to arrive at a solution. Any reasonable learned person knows the only way left is to use the money to buy bushland habitat. First mayor of Redlands, Eddie Santagiuliana, asked Redland residents what they wanted developed…farmland, or bushland. He didn’t live long enough to see the people of Redlands being denied retention of bushland habitat for koala and other wildlife preservation and conservation…such is human greed. In my view, too many cooks spoil the broth, and too many crooks spoil the landscape…ruining lives in the process.

  3. Federal Environment Minister, Greg Hunt, being interviewed on the ABC made the statement that the LNP had made a commitment for the Northern suburbs of Brisbane to have a certain amount of money for koala protection after discussiin with the member for that area and he would be having discussions with Andrew Laming about the koalas on the south side of Brisbane. One would assume that makes koalas an election issue.

  4. Regarding development currently in the Redlands

    Readers of this site need to be aware of some of the past history that surrounds the latest proposed development of a bridge linking the existing cycle/ Pedestrian way from Victoria Point Shopping Centre across Eprapah creek to the Thornlands Affinity Estate. The existing path was fostered by Toni Bowler when she was Councillor against the wishes of a large proportion of Victoria Point Residents surrounding the area . At the time she was questioned as to why the path was being done and refused to answer a statement as to when a bridge was going to be built as it was obvious that the level of the ‘scope of works’ was aimed at linking the future development we now see.
    So I am unsure why Ms Bowler is so concerned with the current Enviromental issues. She was made very aware of the damage she was going to do to the habitat behind the Cineplex area of Victoria Point but chose to ignore her Constituants .
    Reader need to be mindful of whose barrow is being pushed by who.
    Two dollar fifty Eviromental Impact Reports are very easily obtained with what ever slant one needs to achieve the desired result. This is well known amoungst the Professional Engineering community.
    Be aware of the enemy within, don’t take any detail at face value, check the credentials of who represents who, you may be surprised.

Comments are closed.