I write on behalf of the Society to express its concerns about damagaing impacts as proposed by the LEDA Holdings Bankstown Business Estate on Bankstown Airport which is now before the public for comment. The Business Park itself is on land owned by Bankstown Airport Limited, but the plan clearly earmarks damaging impacts on the adjacent Airport Reserve, which is state owned Crown land open space zoned for recreational purposes. Neither LEDA nor Bankstown Airport Limited own any part of Airport Reserve, which is a vestige of the original County of Cumberland Planning Scheme Green Belt.
It is clear from the development proposal that a 200 metre long sliplane, a 60 metre wide entry into the airport precinct, and a bus bay at the western end are all intened impacts on Airport Reserve. We do not oppose the LEDA plan for the airport development site, but we do not believe that any part of Airport Reserve should be made to accommodate aspects of the development.
Airport Reserve contains a significant remnant of Cooks River/Castlereagh Ironbark Forest which is listed as an Endangered Ecological Community under the schedules of the Threatened Species Conservation Act. The significance of this site was recognised by the New South Wales Government Environmental Trust when it made Bankstown Bushland Society the recipient of a $43,588 grant in 1992 [Restoration of Swamp Woodland Remnants: Airport and Ashford Reserves, NSW Environmental Trust 92/RR/G23]. Subsequently the society has undertaken volunteer bush regeneration work in support of the grant. More recently, in 2013, the Society was awarded another $54,000 by the Environmental Trust to continue bush regeneration work at Airport and Ashford Reserves, work which is now well underway and due for completion next year.
This work is in support of Bankstown City Council’s Bushland Plan of Management: Reserves in Immediate Vicinity of Bankstown Airport, 2004 (p.16), which recognises the conservation values of the site and proposes regeneration and revegetation on all parts.
The Major Development Plan Concept will effectively annex the site for the purposes of private development on the Airport precinct, destroying the integrity of the Open Space reserve as a consequence. The ecological and aesthetic values of Airport Reserve should not be compromised in this way, and no part of the site should be rezoned to permit this.
We believe that access to the development site should not go through Airport Reserve, but via the existing entry point at Tower Road off Henry Lawson Drive, and via the major entry point and internal road at Bunnings. The bus stop should also be located on the development site itself, within the airport precinct. Bankstown Bushland Society trusts that your department will withdraw any plans it may have to construct roads, lanes and bus stops on any part of Airport Reserve. We look forward to your confirmation of this.
Bankstown Bushland Society