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Lake Macquarie City Council’s plan for commercial, tourism, residential complex on Toronto foreshore challenged

Demand for park land: Jeff Jansson, of Rotary Club of Toronto Sunrise, is among those banding together against Lake Macquarie City Council’s concept of developing a commercial, tourism and residential complex on the foreshore.A council plan to develop a piece of prime waterfront land–part of Toronto’s foreshore park–is short sighted, a resident opposed to the projectsays.
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ButLake Macquarie mayor Kay Fraser saysthe six storey commercial, tourism and residential development would provide a boost to the community.

Council voted on Monday night to prepare forthe development application process to design and buildthe complex on two blocksnear BathStreet.

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While no detailed plans areavailable yet,the development is being touted asmuch higher than the two storeysthatthe local environmental plan allows in that area.

Council’s decision means planning approval will be sought and detailed design and construction work will go to tender.

But Toronto resident Jeff Jansson, whoseRotary Club of Toronto Sunrisecontributed to the greenery inthe foreshore park, spoke againstthe plan atthe council meeting.

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Mr Jansson told theNewcastle Heraldhe believed Toronto’s population growth meant there was increasing demand for park land.

“It should be the park land that people believe it is, without the development,” he said.

“We’re not against development as such but this is prime waterfront land and quite a sensitive area.”

Mr Jansson said the proposal was“very, very short sighted”.

“The community believesthat [land earmarked for development] is the park,” he said.

“The whole area is designated as the Toronto foreshore park. Council maintains it, the same crew mows it–there’s no distinction between the two [the park land and land to be developed].”

Cr Wendy Harrison was the only councillorwho spoke against the plan at Monday’s meeting.She was unsuccessful in her callto makethe blockscommunity land.

“I believe this is what a great deal of people in Toronto want,” she said.

Mayor Kay Fraser said it was the beginning of the process and there would be a chance for wide public consultation when the development application was lodged.

“We’ve hada clear line with what this land will be used for,” she said.

“It’s an opportunity to provide an economic boost to the Toronto area.”

Cr Jason Pauling said the concept was for “an iconic building for this site”.

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