Dam development plan concerns

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Pierra WillixBusselton Dunsborough Times
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Dunsborough Lakes Golf Club will implement water-saving initiatives ahead of plans to fill in and develop the estate’s irrigation dam.
Camera IconDunsborough Lakes Golf Club will implement water-saving initiatives ahead of plans to fill in and develop the estate’s irrigation dam. Credit: WA News

Dunsborough Lakes residents are concerned about the amenity of the estate and the entrance to town after the Dunsborough Lakes Golf Club announced plans for a water reduction policy ahead of developer ambitions to fill in and develop the irrigation dam which stores excess water.

Residents last month received a letter from club manager Paul Devaney which said because of a significant reduction in the amount of water available to the club, a water usage reduction policy had to be put in place.

In the letter, he said plans for the development of the large dam at the back of the Dunsborough Lakes Estate, coupled with the club no longer having access to bore water, meant there would be at least 90,000cum less water available for use than in the past.

Mr Devaney said over summer the club intended to harvest as much water as possible from each lake in the system, one at a time, so it could accurately gauge the amount of water available.

“Based on our modelling, we believe we will have to reduce the amount of water being used by approximately 30-40 per cent,” he said in the letter.

Mr Devaney said this would be achieved through turning off the reticulation to any non-essential areas, reducing the water used on the course, and through the increased use of wetting agents.

The news shocked Dunsborough resident Richard Wain, who said the overall look of the golf course was already being affected and suggested it may affect the overall value of properties along the fairways.

“The playing fields have a lack of water and the grass dies off in the middle of summer,” he said.

“Now the golf club is struggling to keep the green and fairways watered and it’s going to look really horrible. People drive into Dunsborough and see the dead lawn and it looks really horrible.

“It has a chance of devaluing people’s properties.”

Mr Wain said once the dam was filled in it would be too late, and suggested the developers should postpone the development.

“In the interim period the developer should be holding off on developing the dam and allow the water to be used for the benefit of the town,” he said.

Mr Devaney said the club was in discussions with the City of Busselton, the Department of Water, and other stakeholders to find a viable solution to the water shortage issue.

Dunsborough Lakes developer Urban Quarter senior development manager David Barham said the estate was also working with the City and Department of Water, as well as the golf club and other stakeholders to resolve the challenge of providing a sustainable long-term groundwater supply to the area.

“The estate is committed to providing a quality place to live for its residents and we are working towards an exciting program of new community facilities including local parklands, a primary school, and a district open space,” he said.

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