Casuarina residents dirty with developer
AUTHORITIES insist that Casuarina residents' health is not at risk from thick dust that has been blowing into their homes for several months from the town centre construction site.
A series of meetings has been held in the last week, involving the developers, representatives from the State Government and Tweed Shire Council and homeowners, about the dust from the old sand-mining site blanketing the area and fears that it has elevated radiation readings.
A Department of Planning spokesman said an infringement notice in relation to air quality had been issued and they, together with the council, would continue to "closely monitor compliance on the site to ensure strict approval conditions are being met".
Mayor Barry Longland and Tweed State MP Geoff Provest say they are satisfied there are no health issues apart from the discomfort caused by the dust.
But both expressed disappointment the builders hadn't acted earlier to alleviate the problem.
Mr Provest called for more truly independent analysis of the site.
I am sick of the sand that is coming into our pools, landing on our cars, covering my floors, my curtains, our computers.
Resident Megan Mckay Brodhurst-hill said the grit and dust problem was like "beach camping in your own home".
"I am sick of the sand that is coming into our pools, landing on our cars, covering my floors, my curtains, our computers," she said.
Hutchinson Builders NSW general manager Paul Hart said there were "zero safety concerns" with regard to health, and that the site had passed all environmental tests.
But Mr Hart, who is raising four children in the area, warned there would be no fixing the dust problem entirely until the $400million beachfront retail and residential development was finished.
"This time next year there will be roads and grass, but as long as there's still construction going on and there's north-easterlies (blowing) there's going to be dust," he said.
"I've got all the dust in my place as well.
"It's just part of building a new development."
Meanwhile, a group of Casuarina residents are also claiming their homes have sustained structural damage from vibration generated by the construction work.
Miramir residents are understood to have been the worst-affected with reports some are considering a class-action over the damage.
Mayor Barry Longland met with the developer this week and said he was given assurances that cosmetic and structural damage to homes would be paid for by the company.
Simon Phillips, who lives adjacent to the town centre construction site, had Department of Planning and Infrastructure representatives inspect his home on Wednesday.
Mr Phillips says they told him damage to his home was so bad he would have to move out for it to be fixed.
But Mr Hart said the company had assessed homes before construction began.
If structural damage was evident at the end of the project, he said, the company would foot the bill for homeowners.