Trees Planted To Screen Anna Bay Eyesore Withering and Dying

The trees that were planted to screen the resort have failed.

 

THE failed Anna Bay Resort is a blight on the visual amenity of the region.

Unfortunately for Port Stephens it sits at the entry to the Stockton sand dunes and is sometimes the first thing that visitors to Anna Bay see.

The buildings are graffitied and derelict with no plan in sight for the remediation of the site.

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Council have taken the owner to the Land and Environment Court but there is little that they can do – the site will sit derelict until the owner chooses to do more.

It was in December 2019 that the resort owner paid to have trees planted by Council which were supposed to screen off the visual impact of the concrete pods.

This screen has been far from effective with the trees failing to thrive in the harsh environment.

Local Anna Bay resident Kelly Hammond has been watching the Anna Bay Resort since day one and has been fighting for something to be done for years.

It has been a long nine year journey.

Everyone locally agrees that the failed development needs to be addressed.

What little has been achieved through the Land and Environment Court still sees a derelict building site being slowly swallowed by sand, covered in graffiti and screened by trees which were planted but not watered which are withering and dying.

Kate Drinan of Port Stephens Council told News Of The Area, “We have ongoing contact with the owner of the Anna Bay Resort.

“We have worked with the applicant to improve the appearance of the site and where possible and necessary, compliance action has been taken.

“We have been notified about the state of the trees — we will be inspecting them and working with the owner to make any changes to maintenance as needed.

“Limited action can be taken by us to manage the appearance of development sites,” she said.

However the community is seeking more action.

Hammond, who is running for Council in the September elections, like other residents would like to see a permanent solution to the site.

“This property is on the market yet again and stronger regulations are required to prevent abounded unsightly developments being repeated in small towns throughout Port Stephens.

“The community did push for trees to be planted to help stop sand blowing across the road and to soften the visual impacts, unfortunately the fast growing cheese trees wilted in the heat and never received water in the first few months of growth.

“RU2 zoning seems to give permission to build sand swallowing or Mosquito infested Resorts – after 9 years the community surely deserves to know what action Council is prepared to take.

“An offer has been made with Century 21 on a part of the site, 1,000 square metres of the 4.14ha – what this means for Anna Bay is yet to be seen,” she said.

 

By Marian SAMPSON

 

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