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Tree Destruction in Ainslie

ainslieresident 31 October 2005 55

At the proposed redevelopment at Goodwin Village in Ainslie, 107 significant trees have been identified.

46% of all significant trees will be removed, another 38% will be damaged by development activity. How does this equate with Stanhope’s new tree protection legislation?

On 20 September 2005 the Chief Minister John Stanhope outlined New Laws to Protect Canberra’s Trees:
“Generations of Canberrans have planted and nurtured the beautiful trees that distinguish our city …

• Tree Management Precincts will protect areas which have high development pressure and high heritage value… Trees within Tree Management Precincts which meet certain criteria – for example being 12 metres tall or taller – will be protected trees”.

At the proposed redevelopment at Goodwin Village in Ainslie

107 significant trees have been identified (ACTPLA definition of significant). The plans detail that

46% of all significant trees will be removed
38% will be damaged by development activity [root damage etc]

Of 16% that will not be affected most are on the nature strip. [DA submission dated 24 June 2005]

Simon Corbell thinks this is OK!

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55 Responses to Tree Destruction in Ainslie
oldoak 3:03 pm 02 Nov 05

C’mon Simon, give yourself a break. Tell McKenzie to scale back on his plans and who knows you could pick up 600+ plus votes at the next election. You don’t have to play the bad guy all the time.

terubo 1:37 pm 02 Nov 05

Absolutely. It’s not far from Weston Park, home of the Yarralumla Nursery where I believe all the darn things were propagated in the first place.

Maelinar 1:33 pm 02 Nov 05

So are they remaining from being planted in 1936 by Tom Weston or whoever ?

Forgive my scarcasm, I’m beginning to see holes in the anti-development debate where perhaps there aren’t any.

terubo 1:31 pm 02 Nov 05

I think I meant ‘sumptuously’.

terubo 1:29 pm 02 Nov 05

Hmmm…interestingly, the Yarralumla house to which you refer is in a street sumptiously lined with…Atlas Cedars. And that complex could well pass as a Retirement Village – in fact I thought it was, when I first saw it…

Maelinar 1:09 pm 02 Nov 05

Ahh I forgot Jaqui, I’m still waiting for her to get back in touch with me to discuss my opinions regarding a MLA residing in a house in Yarralumla.

Indi 10:57 am 02 Nov 05

Mael – it is quite possible that some of the MLA’s have personal websites.

To be fair, I’ve seen comment on occasion from Mr Corbell, Mr Hargreaves and Ms Burke.

Maelinar 9:19 am 02 Nov 05

Big-Al, is it wrong to question why things are being done ?

OK the selection of names may be a little close to the truth, however people living in a war zone are still entitled to their opinion regardless of the tank rolling through their wheat field.

What’s wrong with my enhanced suggestion that the upper levels of the complex fund the oldies on the lower floor ?

Why can’t that be considered as a feasable alternative to our crumbling aged care situation ?

I call it the coca-cola dispenser theory (anybody but me remember that thing you put in your fridge, put the coke in the top and they file through one by one) ?

It keeps the fresher ones at the top, and the old ones come out the bottom.

And is this kind of complex appropriate in Ainslie, an already established suburb, with all the recent developments at Kingston and Gungahlin ?

Personally I can see a lot of empty houses in the forthcoming years, would it be more appropriate to bulldoze houses closer to malls and casinos and parks for the retirees ?

disclaimer: I live in Holt and having only just moved to Canberra, do not actually know where Ainslie is.

terubo 8:52 am 02 Nov 05

Quite so. I think it is to be encouraged. I wouldn’t mind betting a lot of the ACT Govt mob read this weighty organ in some terror of being exposed, but are too damn scared of posting or commenting.

Maelinar 8:37 am 02 Nov 05

I think that the good old days of leaning over your neighbours fence and having a chat with your local member are long gone.

I certainly know from previously working within the office of a senior member of parliament that they are way out of touch with their constituencies (?sp), and that it certainly looks from my view of the world that it is being replicated by the lower forms of government as well.

I believe that there should be a legislated requirement for a public representative to have a portal out into the real world where their presence can be queried and justified.

In this day and age of overpopulation and technology, the good old days of getting a secretary to fob everybody off is also redundant. A personal blog is a unique item where many people can have their questions answered (if they can be bothered to read that far), as well as being current and informative.

It allows the reader certainly to make decisions based upon not only the content, but the quality and standard of assistance they receive, and of course the form it comes in (the good old grammar rearing it’s ugly head).

It would be good if the MLA’s were contactable. That is undeniable, the fact of the matter is I’m sure that the age of some of the MLA’s is one of the biggest detriments to their uptake of this idea.

I note however that Hargreaves has previously posted here, (from the banner message) and given that he looks like the oldest resident of Canberra, it certainly can’t be that hard.

I certainly think that one of the reasons Simon posts here is that he is in the age group of people who can embrace an internet blog as a means of getting an idea public, and dispensing personal and governmental policies to the public.

So to answer your question directly, I think it would be good.

Indi 8:36 am 02 Nov 05

Grand project that will bring in some desperately needed aged care beds…interesting income spinner via the sale of ‘units’ to the Socialist Left Upwardly Mobile Ever-ageing Retirees(SLUMPERS) – sounds suspiciously like an enclave being developed here to shelter older folk from all the rowdy whippersnappers!

Big Al 8:36 am 02 Nov 05

I’m sorry – this whole carry on still sounds like a childish hissy-fit.

When other Canberra residents feel strongly about the removal of trees and the alteration of the landscape near their homes for the construction of the GDE, the rest of us bag on them because their supposedly selfish and not thinking of the needs of all the Gungahlin residents who commute to Woden.

Now this time around, simply because an aged care facility wants to legally develop appropriate aged care facilities on its land (or land that it can legally access) so that cashed up baby-boomers can continue to live in the suburb of their choice in their old age – we flush out a bunch of trendy latte-sipping hypocrites.

Make no mistake this is NIMBYism in its purest form. The give away is the use of lines like “I’m not opposed to the development, just not in its present form…” where the term “… in its present form” actually means “Ainslie” and “…inappropriate height…” means “…will block my view…”.

Build a bridge and get over it.

terubo 8:14 am 02 Nov 05

On the other hand, Maelinar, if this became the FIRST method of contacting MLA’s, how would you feel about that? Just musing…

oldsoldier 8:10 am 02 Nov 05

Dunno if it’s a last ditch attempt, but good on ’em. If you wanted to search though the ACT Planning Authority’s web-site to find out stuff for yourself, then you might have the time or resources to go through over 200Mb of files on their web site to do with the application – all with no titles or indexing. Just downloading the files would be beyond most people’s computer capacity.

Maelinar 8:03 am 02 Nov 05

Is Ainslieresident’s post an open letter to the Government ?

Has it been replicated in print or direct email ?

Whilst I am aware that MLA’s do read and post on this blog, I disagree that this is the appropriate forum to be posting open letters.

I am concerned that this is the last method of contacting MLA’s, and that the general public (can’t say I’ve seen Ainslieresident posting here vigourously in the recent past, but I’m new myself…) are using it in a last desperate attempt to get their point across directly to the people who are in a position of responsibility representing them.

Thumper 7:35 am 02 Nov 05


These trees not only have cultural significance, but social and aesthetic significance as well.

They have existed since the 1930s and as such I believe that they are beyond being a simple ‘significant tree’.

In addition, any large out of character building in the area would be hugely unsympathetic to the architectural fabric of the place, that being the area itself, and would therefore destroy it.

If a building is to be built it needs to be sympathetic with its surroundings, and should use the existing landscape to enhance its aesthetic qualities.

It can be done. Whether the political will exists to have it done properly is the question.

ainslieresident 9:37 pm 01 Nov 05

Dear Chief Minister, Jon Stanhope and Minister for Planning Simon Corbell,
If this strand of magnificent atlas cedar’s planted in 1936 by Thomas Weston, the father of landscape architecture in Canberra, is not considered heritage and worthy of saving…what is?

Martin 8:37 pm 01 Nov 05

I want to refer to a previous comment here by Simon Corbell that “tree damaging activity (such as incursions into the root zone ) does not mean the destruction of that tree.”

The tree damaging activity Simon refers to includes excavation of underground car parks close by (ie their root zone). If I were a betting man (I stick to the sweeps myself), then I would not put money on these magnificent old trees surviving those car parks. These trees are unique. They are seventy years old. Environment ACT told us today they will last 400 years if let to live. People should go down to Bonney Street in Ainslie and have a look at them. Then picture the three, four and six storey buildings either on top of them (yes, 43% of all significant trees on the site will be chainsawed) or potentially fatally damaging them so they will wither away and die anyway.

These are the last remaining stand of the original planting by Thomas Weston in 1936. All the others have been cut down or suffered from other developers’ tree damaging activity. Once they’re gone they can NEVER be replaced.

Surely Simon Corbell could help Goodwin find additional land in the Inner North for additional aged care places that wouldn’t kill the heritage values of one of our oldest suburbs. I would vote for that at the next election. I can’t say I would vote for a party that destroyed the heritage they were supposed to protect (remember it was the Labor Party that recommended Ainslie for the National Trust’s endangered suburbs list in the first place).

bonfire 6:52 pm 01 Nov 05

chris s i think you are misguided. now that the alp has majority govt they no longer need community consultation forums.

we have elected representatives to make these decisions. remember how bad the liberals were, well now we have simon and co, and theyre elected, so they are making decisions.

stand by for newly registered bloggers, prob from ainslie, to present us with evidence they think we need to know.

i still cant drag my car legally. where were you then you nimby bastards!

colsim 6:06 pm 01 Nov 05

How about keeping it at 6 storeys – just putting 4 of those in the basement?

On a more serious note, good discussion guys and thanks to Minister Corbell for putting in his two cents worth.

One other thing, I’ve had a flamin Alf Stewart gutful of people using the term Nimby to downplay anyone’s right to protest something going on in their community. It’s a classic rightwing tactic of shifting the focus of debate from the issue at hand by casting aspersions on the motivations of those protesting. It’s pissy and transparent.

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