Woodridge residents concerned about quarry proposal

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Rona Chiera and Jenny Walker were among the 62 people who attended a meeting in Woodridge yesterday to raise concerns about a quarry proposed for Caraban Rd. Picture: Anita McInnes

A GROUP of residents and ratepayers met in Woodridge yesterday to express their concerns about a proposal for a new quarry on Lot M1332 Caraban Rd in Caraban.

King Dr resident Jenny Walker organised the meeting, which was attended by 62 people including Shire of Gingin councillor Frank Peczka.

The residents raised concerns including the loss of Carnaby’s black cockatoo habitat, having about 46 heavy haulage truck movements on Caraban Rd and using the Caraban Rd and Indian Ocean Dr intersection, the unknown effects of silica dust on residents’ health, the size of the buffer and the effects on other existing and potential businesses in the area if the quarry went ahead.

King Dr resident Damien Nelson from the Wilbinga Shacks Reserves Group said the westerly winds which blew most of the year meant dust from the quarry would affect everyone in Woodridge.

Mr Nelson also said the quarry would result in a loss of about $50,000 to $100,000 in equity in his property as who would want to buy his home to look out over a quarry.

According to the application lodged for Sheepco the Shire of Gingin has the discretionary power to approve the use class – extractive industry – in the general rural zone – and the development application has to be advertised for public comment.

The application said the limestone and sand quarry of about 4ha would be located centrally within the 154ha property giving the quarry an 800m buffer from Woodbridge estate immediately to the east and a 300m buffer to the intensive horticultural operation immediately to the north.

But residents were concerned that during the quarry’s 30-year life span it would expand to occupy 20ha.

The application said when the quarry closed the land would be rehabilitated so it could be “incorporated into an urban framework as the settlement of Guilderton” grew and expanded.

Caraban Rd resident Rona Chiera from a Moore River Holidays said she was against the location of the quarry and also concerned about health and environmental implications.

Barragoon Rd resident Stan Sykes said if the quarry went ahead Woodridge residents faced long term exposure to silica dust, which was a 100 times lighter than a grain of sand.

Mr Sykes said the dust would drift over Woodridge to Tran’s Farm, a proposed microbrewery and solar farm.

He and other residents questioned where the proposed quarry would get its water from as there were no more licences available – another concern was if the quarry was allowed to take water from the area it would lower the water table in the area.

Residents were also worried about noise from the quarry.

The application said the limestone and agricultural lime would be extracted using an excavator and a dozer with no blasting to be undertaken while the heavy vehicles involved in carting the material would be 19m semi-trailers and 27.5m B-doubles.

If approved by the council the development is expected to generate about 46 (both inbound and outbound) total daily trips on a regular day between 7am to 7pm Monday to Friday and 7am to 4pm on Saturday.

To view the plans and documents visit

https://www.gingin.wa.gov.au/council/public-notices.aspx

Comments on the proposal can be submitted before 4pm T­uesday, September 8.