Lake Macquarie City Council have recently exhibited the Draft Marks Point and Belmont South Local Adaptation Plan. The draft plan to help the communities of Marks Point and Belmont South adapt to future sea level rise and flood risks, it is now on public exhibition for a 60-day period. The draft plan applies to a specific site within Lake Macquarie and is the first approach of 10 adaptation plans to be developed in the future.
The main actions in the draft plan includes permitting the construction of sloping sea walls to protect the foreshore, raising and improving the design of infrastructure such as drains and roads, constructing new buildings with floor levels above projected flood levels and raising homes if required.
The draft plan also recognises that retreat is not warranted in Marks Point and Belmont South and the adaptive approach outlined in the plan means that industry and the community can plan for the worst and only act when necessary.
While the actions proposed in the draft plan will be spread over many years, up to the end of the Century, a more detailed 10-year action plan sets out specific tasks to apply new design standards to new buildings and infrastructure, review planning and development controls, and coordinate land filling with the raising of drains and roads.
The draft plan implies that the Lake Macquarie’s response to climate change has changed slightly in recent months, i.e. they will now allow residents to fill their land to levels higher than future sea level rises.
Overall it’s been an interesting journey to watch and I think councils insurers will still be happy with a position and a process that makes owners acutely aware of the risks.
For more information the draft plan is available at haveyoursaylakemac.com.au/future-flood-planning or by contacting Lake Macquarie City Council on 4921 0333.
HIA Executive Director – Hunter