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Cable car questions

3-May-2019

Response to questions and comments

At the public meeting on the cable car proposed for kunanyi / Mount Wellington on 16 April 2019 the Trust undertook to responded to questions from the public in writing.

1.       A speaker stated that:  the Trust is playing a facilitating role for the MWCC, giving them everything they want, including extending the pinnacle zone for their new development and a raft of other things.

Trust response

The Trust’s reasons for deciding to increase the extent of the Pinnacle Specific Area are explained on the amending plan page on this website and in its various reports to the Tasmanian Planning Commission. A cable car is only one of a range of uses and developments that may be proposed for the Pinnacle Specific Area (see Table 3 on page 131 of the Wellington Park Management Plan). Any developments that are not listed as exempt in Table 4 on page 140 of the Management Plan have to meet the requirements for use and development set out in Chapter 8 of the Management Plan.

2.       A speaker asked the following question: On page 70 under the heading “biodiversity” the Wellington Park Management Plan says: “no loss of native vegetation other than for approved management purposes”.  Why hasn’t the Trust looked at the full proposal available on the MWCC website and told the proponents it simply doesn’t comply with the Management Plan?  Also in the Management Plan the Organ Pipes are listed as a geoconservation site.  The proponent’s planned drilling and tower above the Organ Pipes falls directly within the boundary of this listed site.  On page 74 of the Management Plan, under the heading “geodiversity” the Plan says: “No damage to sites of geoheritage value other than for approved management purposes.”  So again, why hasn’t the Wellington Park Management Trust just written to the proponent and said your proposal does not fit the Management Plan?  Again, why haven’t they looked at the full proposal and told the proponent that it does not comply with the Management Plan with regard to the building height and size that is proposed for the summit?  The Management Plan talks about buildings on the pinnacle being low key, single storey and a maximum of 100 square metres, yet the plan is for a 3 storey building more than 40 times that size.  So why hasn’t the Trust told the developers that they are wasting their time?

Trust response

Firstly, to put the quotes from the Wellington Park Management Plan into context; they come from Chapter 5 of the Management Plan which deals with maintaining Park values. Both quotes are “key desired outcomes” of the Management Plan for biodiversity and geodiversity respectively.

The Trust has not received any application for a permit for construction of a cable car in Wellington Park nor has Hobart City Council received an application for a planning permit under LUPAA. Neither the Trust nor Council can begin assessing the impacts of a cable car development until a proposal is lodged.

Following a request by the MWCC, the Trust has provided it with a preliminary list of the issues that would need to be covered in a Park Activity Assessment for a cable car development in the Park. These are the relevant requirements outlined in Chapter 8 of the Wellington Park Management Plan 2013 that the Trust needs to consider when assessing the impact of any development proposal in the Park (see section 8.5.1 on page 134 and S2.1 on page 167 of the Management Plan). This includes that developments: “Be consistent with the management and preservation of the values of the Park, as identified in this Management Plan”. The Trust may require further information if it is not satisfied that the information provided by the proponent is sufficient to assess the impact of the proposal and proposed impact mitigation measures.

In its application for a planning permit under the Land Use Planning and Approvals Act 1993 (LUPAA) the MWCC would have to demonstrate that its proposal meets the standards for use and development in the Management Plan, including conserving flora, fauna geological and geomorphological values and protecting natural processes. Building height and size would also be considered as part of the application for a planning permit under LUPAA (see Table 5 on page 144 and S2.6 on page 171 of the Management Plan).

3.    A comment was made that the Trust only employs a manager and part-time ranger to look after the Park.

Trust response

The Trust currently employs a full time Manager and an Education and Regulations Coordinator who works 4 days per week as well as one weekend per month. The Trust also engages the services of a heritage consultant one day per week. This level of staffing is adequate for the day to day functions of the Trust. As noted above, on ground management of the infrastructure in the Park is carried out by the various Park management agencies and the Trust’s role is mainly strategic planning and regulatory. The Education and Regulations Coordinator is assisted by a number of authorised officers appointed under section 13 of the Wellington Park Act 1993. When necessary the Trust is able to draw on additional resources from the State Government and Park management agencies as well as specialist consultants.

Further information

The planning page has information on the role of the Wellington Park Management Trust in the Management of Wellington Park.  The cable car proposal page has information about the process for assessing the proposed cable car.

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