The principle of not allowing private development on public land stands

The principle of not allowing private development on public land stands

Jim Slavin sent us a copy of his letter that was published in the Mosman Daily today:

I do not speak for the Headland Preservation Group, but David Fosters’ comments on the proposed development at Middle Head for an aged care facility (Mosman Daily 6/3/14 ‘Sense is Needed’) demonstrates a growing trend in our society. Attack the opposition, misconstrue the facts and generalise to make your point.

His reference to zealotry, propaganda , narrow- mindedness , greenies and fairies at the bottom of the garden, in relation to the Headland Preservation Group, is the attack. His assertions that access will be improved and the footprint of the existing facilities not greatly expanded is either a misunderstanding or a deliberate misconstruction of what are the demonstrable facts. And finally, his points that opponents of the development are against free enterprise, which they are not, unless the word FREE is literally interpreted, and against SUITABLY located aged care facilities in Mosman, are the generalisations.

The proposal is such a radical departure from what was envisaged when the facilities were handed over to the community by then Prime Minister Howard (a closet greenie?) and what has already been developed, unopposed, at the headland, that it requires amendments to the Sydney Harbour Foreshore Trust’s Management Plan, and most likely Ministerial approval.

The opposition is mostly about protecting prime public parkland for everyone’s enjoyment, not just members of the Mosman community. Nothing more than was envisaged when the Trust was first established.

Opponents of the proposal come from a wide cross section of the community and the political spectrum. A reported application for a smaller development , yet unseen, may change some people’s views. But for me and others the principle of not allowing private development on public land stands.

Jim Slavin
Reproduced with permission

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