A highly contentious proposal to build seniors housing on flood prone land at Woy Woy has been brutally rebuffed in a report by Central Coast Council to the Joint Regional Planning Panel. That Panel is the Government appointed authority which will determine the proposal.

President of Save Woy Woy Waterfront, Ross Cochrane, said “Our group has been saying all along that this site is unsuitable and the development must not be permitted. So it is a great relief to see the Council assessment arriving at the same conclusion.

“Since November 2017 we have been saying the proposed redevelopment is too high, too dense and the site is flood prone. It is not suitable for seniors living.

“The local community will strongly welcome this Council report recommending refusal,” said Mr Cochrane.

The current development proposal has arisen after Woy Woy Bowling Club sold the land it is built on to a private development company as a way of dealing with its financial issues.

Greens MLC and Spokesperson on Planning and Crown Lands, David Shoebridge said  “This proposal should never have got to first base. The site is wrong, the zoning is wrong and its bulk and scale is offensive.

“This is only on the books because the Government created a planning loophole which allows seniors living developments on land where it would otherwise be prohibited.

“Seniors housing on this site would expose older people to the risk of being trapped in floodwaters. This risk will only increase as a result of climate change.

“The former Gosford City Council, before amalgamation, had planning policies which protected communities from overdevelopment in areas projected to be affected by rising sea levels. These should be applied here.

“In the midst of one of the warmest winters and worst droughts on record we should be in no doubt that climate change is real and we need to be planning for it.

“ I congratulate the community of Woy Woy for sticking together in opposing this inappropriate development,” Mr Shoebridge said.