Have say on City plan for coastline

Catherine MasseyBusselton Dunsborough Times
City of Busselton director of planning and development services Paul Needham, councillor Ross Paine, and Mayor Grant Henley. Photo: Catherine Massey
Camera IconCity of Busselton director of planning and development services Paul Needham, councillor Ross Paine, and Mayor Grant Henley. Photo: Catherine Massey Credit: Picture: Catherine Massey

Community consultation was set to become the backbone for Busselton’s local coastal parks, reserves and foreshores with a survey inviting residents to have their say on future management.

The survey was developed by the City of Busselton to gather information on how locals use the coast and what they determine to be the most valuable aspects of it.

City of Busselton director of planning and development services Paul Needham said these areas were central to Busselton’s seaside lifestyle.

“This information will guide future planning and development, as well as coastal asset management and protection,” Mr Needham said.

“Coastal parks, reserves and foreshores also play a valuable role in protecting our homes and infrastructure from coastal erosion and flooding, as well as being a home for native plants and animals.”

In recent years, the extensively developed Geographe Bay coastline was subject to significant erosion and accretion influenced by weather and ocean current patterns.

Curtin University sustainability professor Peter Newman said the non-cyclic nature of the erosion and accretion at Geographe Bay meant it would continue to get worse.

“Geographe Bay is one of the jewels of Western Australia and there will be a growing resident and visitor population wanting to use the coast for multiple activities,” Mr Newman said.

“There should be no further development on coastal dunes, especially where there is a history of flooding and storm surge damage.”

City of Busselton director of engineering and works services Oliver Darby said driving winds and storm surges had directly impacted Geographe Bay which resulted in significant beach sand loss as well as damage to landscaped coastal assets.

“The City of Busselton have a strategic Coastal Management Program (2018-2028) which aims to facilitate strategic, effective and sustainable coastal adaptation by the City of Busselton along the Geographe Bay foreshore over the next 10 years.”

In a bid to control the erosion in recent years, the City of Busselton were the first local government to use Geotextile Sand Container groynes, which were installed at Locke Estate, Busselton Foreshore and Wonnerup.

Mr Darby said the groynes had been very effective in stabilising the coast.

Visit www.yoursay.busselton.wa.gov.au/coastal-parkland-utilisation to take the survey.

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