Protecting our harbour foreshore slopes

25 June 2018

Mosman Council’s strong advocacy for protecting our significant harbour slopes has achieved a welcome reprieve with a proposed two-year extension to the temporary exclusion of the area from the State’s Housing Codes.

Mosman Mayor Carolyn Corrigan said the news received today from Minister for Planning Anthony Roberts was welcome, but that in its submission to the NSW Government, Council would be requesting permanent exclusion from the Codes.

“Other harbour-side councils already have exemptions by one means or another from the Housing Codes and Mosman now has two years to pursue permanent exclusion for our area which is needed to avoid local scenic slopes being impacted by complying development, such as dual occupancies, terraces and two-storey houses,” Mosman Mayor Carolyn Corrigan said.

“We have been working for many years to achieve this but unfortunately the advice we have received from the Department on how we can achieve this has changed several times – we have to get this right because how the harbour looks from the water, the headland and the beaches is integral to its value as Sydney’s greatest natural asset.

“The Housing Codes, if applied to our Scenic Protection Area, put at risk the vegetation and built form that exists there now, as well as removing the role of council and the community in having a say on development in this sensitive part of the coastline. Over time we believe the outcome would be to greatly erode the harbour’s aesthetic qualities as well as its environmental value.

“In the meantime, Council welcomes this proposed temporary extension and acknowledges the support of Councillors and staff, along with Member for North Shore Felicity Wilson whose representations helped secure the result. We will be working with the Minister and his department to ensure that the beautiful vegetation and natural scale of the iconic foreshores of Mosman gain permanent exemption from the Codes.”

The proposed extension follows Council’s resolution at its 5 June meeting to begin preparations for a major information, lobbying and advocacy campaign to permanently exclude the Mosman Scenic Protection Area from the State’s Housing Codes, or to otherwise extend the current timeframe.

Protecting Mosman’s harbour slopes has been a Council priority for many years and through careful planning and ongoing lobbying by Council, it has been excluded from the NSW Government’s Housing Code since February 2009.