'There will be nowhere else for the water to go'
KINGSCLIFF residents are calling on the NSW Government to halt the filling of all flood-prone land in the seaside town, fearing any further development could pose a risk to their homes.
The petition, established by local resident Jerry Cornford and already signed by more than 600 residents "without trying", outlines four issues they would like addressed.
These include directing Tweed Shire Council to review and upgrade its Flood Management Study for the area in light of last year's flood.
It also asks to take into account the effect of proposed filling of wetland around Turnock St and south of Noble Lakeside Park.
The petition seeks to halt all filling of flood-prone land for urban development between Kingscliff village and the Tweed River, pending a new hydrological study and investigate the rezoning of such land to prohibit filling.
Mr Cornford said many residents of West Kingscliff were particularly concerned after water lapped at their homes during last year's record flood.
"If this is filled to the same level as our homes, there will be nowhere else for the water to go," Mr Conford said.
"We were lucky last year but if it had rained as it did in 2013, we would have been gonners, all of this precinct would be under water.
"Any further fill on whose-ever land is an unacceptable risk."
Dave Harries, who has lived at his Bellbird Drive home for 18 years, said the drainage area on the northern end of his boundary fence, which is a good five metres below his ground level, had "roared with water" at last year's flood.
"We could hear it rushing through," Mr Harries said.
"It's been right up to my fence. The flooding is getting worse."
Similar concerns were raised by residents last October when developer Dr Stephen Segal held an open day to show residents his plans to develop a 25ha parcel of land south of Noble Lakeside Park.
Dr Segal, through his company Gales Holdings, owns much of the undeveloped land in Kingscliff, including behind Kingscliff Shopping Centre through which Turnock St runs. This petition, which does not identify any specific land, would directly impact his properties.
The petition comes ahead of roundtable discussions planned by Tweed Shire Council to allow residents to discuss the draft Kingscliff Locality Plan, which provides a 30-year vision and planning framework for the town's future growth.
Due to overwhelming response, the council has been forced to change the venue of the meetings, which will now be held at Kingscliff Beach Bowls Club on September 4.
Sessions will be held at noon and 5.30pm. Booking essential through tweedshire.eventbrite.com.au or phone (02) 6670 2400.