MEMBERS of the newly formed ‘Cape Woolamai Community Association’ are worried.
They believe the Council is secretly preparing to support the rezoning of the Phillip Island Airport for a range of uses; including residential development, light industrial (along Veterans Drive) and commercial tourism purposes (northern or highway side).
But they say there is no strategic support for such an amendment to the planning scheme. And they have formed a new community group to fight it – Cape Woolamai Community Association. The group believes two council documents that discuss the future land use for the Phillip Island Airport site need to be reviewed and amended.
President of the association, Nyree Davis, advised the Council during the August Community Engagement Question Time that sections of both the San Remo, Newhaven, Cape Woolamai Strategic Review 2015 (Strategic Review) and the Phillip Island and San Remo Visitor Economy Strategy 2035 (Visitor Strategy), relating to the Phillip Island Airport site, needed to be reviewed before being adopted because they contain errors.
At the time Ms Davis was advised by the councillors that “they would look into it”.
But nothing happened and the Council went ahead and voted to adopt the tourism strategy unanimously last Wednesday night.
Ms Davis says the strategy incorrectly includes (on page 153) the following as one of the “Cape Woolamai Precinct Priorities – Priorities from Current Plans: Development of tourism oriented facilities on the northern part of the previous Phillip Island Airport.”
“Development of the land for ‘commercial tourism uses’ at the northern end, and for ‘light industrial or destination tourism purposes’ on Veterans Drive was supposed to be complementary to the continuation of fixed wing uses at the airport but with that finished, it would have to go through a public process again.
She said the Bass Coast Shire Council commissioned the Phillip Island Airport Strategic Review in May 2015 (Airport Review) to investigate the viability of the airport.
“Strategic Review and Visitor Strategy are inconsistent with the recommendations from the Airport Review,” she said.
The Strategic Review is a public document, she said, prepared by the council for the purpose of providing greater certainty for residents and landowners regarding land use. That is why the council was asked to address the concerns raised for the purposes of clarity and transparency.
“We encourage the community to become members of the Cape Woolamai Community Association. The purpose of the incorporated association is to protect and enhance the natural environment and amenity of Cape Woolamai for current and future generations.”
You can find membership forms at local Cape Woolamai stores or look for Capewoolamaicommunity on Facebook. It was recently estimated that there is 29 years of residential land available across the three towns of San Remo, Newhaven and Cape Woolamai and that no further land needs to be rezoned for housing in these areas.