I have recently married a local Cronulla man (42 years in Cronulla) and have lived on Cronulla Point for two years so I have a fresh perspective on Cronulla.
Recently we have been following the Ozone street re-development story and after discussions with my husband and his local shire network we believe that the information, opinions and attacks on the developer of Ozone street are misdirected and not representative of the wider community.
Here are the reasons why we believe the communications surrounding this project are at this point biased and the information inaccurate:
1. The developer should not be blamed for maximising the development potential of a site. Every developer has the right to do so in line with the DCP, LEP and NSW Apartment design guidelines.
2. Council zoned the site for the height and density that has been complied with by the developer.
3. "Buyer beware". The people living opposite the development that rely on views over the old red brick walk up apartments should have done their due diligence on their purchase (such as those living in "Breeze") which includes assessing the surrounding older buildings and zoning. Why do they have the right to object when the site is zoned for the height and density? If you want a view then buy frontline ocean, not two blocks back.
4. We totally agree that Cronulla has become busy and parking can be hard but only in the busiest summer months and to be honest if we drive we always get a park around the mall and lining up to get into South Cronulla for 15 minutes during busy times is not a "traffic problem" in a beach area 25km from a global city CBD.
5. it is not the fault of the developer that Council has up-zoned most of Cronulla. If residents have an issue its too late to object to height and density when a DA is submitted, the objection should have been submitted when the new LEP was released. If council ignored the local people then don't vote them back in again! All that happens now is the project goes ahead and those wanting to live their are disadvantaged with delays and extra property purchase costs.
6. This is a complying development. Council in fear of a handful of surrounding residents has deliberately wasted more of the whole Shire's rate money to take a project to the Land and Environment Court costing this community millions of dollars in legal costs. We worked out that the money spent in the L&E court in the last 5 years where a majority of cases are lost by Council could have paid for the Cronulla Mall upgrade and maybe more playgrounds, lighting or footpath upgrades contributing to a safer public domain.
7. On a personal note there seems to be bias against city developers coming to work in the Cronulla area which does not help with our reputation or progress. Buildings by developer locals such as Dingle, Soul, Tara Maree and other new buildings are not fully compliant with the codes and guidelines and all lack significant landscape setbacks contributing to a beautiful streetscape yet they were approved and built.
We need people to stop the fear mongering about over development and remember that the things that are attracting down sizers to Cronulla are cafes/restaurants/shops, walkability, public transport and the like, all driven and sustained by the uplift in population from development.
If Cronulla is to be a sleepy town like the book Puberty Blues (my only contact with Cronulla up until I met my husband) then unfortunately its too late so lets embrace change and let Cronulla evolve the right way.
Zoe Wechtrer, Cronulla