RESIDENTS do not own ocean views – this was the message from Joondalup councillors at their meeting last week.
The council was considering a tender for the second stage of upgrades on Oceanside Promenade between West View Boulevard and Ocean Reef Road in Mullaloo.
Upgrades will include street parking bays along the western verge, a flush red asphalt median, raised median islands and new pedestrian crossings.
Stage one, which included similar upgrades between Warren Way and West View Boulevard, started in April and are due to be completed this month.
When considering stage one, officers recommended councillors exclude new trees in the landscape design following feedback from community consultation.
However, councillors voted in April to retain the trees.
For stage two, officers made the same recommendation not to include new trees along the western verge of Oceanside Promenade.
During the three-week stage two community consultation, the City received 90 responses; 32 were opposed with concerns about the effectiveness of raised media islands and the height of the landscaping proposed.
At the meeting, a resident said the issue of trees being planted was “causing a lot of stress”.
“We pay millions for our houses and for uninterrupted views and our rates reflect this,” he said. He said trees blocking the view could reduce property values.
However, at the meeting, Cr Philippa Taylor moved an alternative motion to keep the trees in the landscape design to “increase tree canopy cover and reduce heat island effect in this area”.
“Nobody owns the view,” she said. “That is not a legitimate reason not to build or plant a tree.”
She said the council needed to “support the bigger picture for all residents”.
Mayor Troy Pickard agreed.
“One might have paid a premium for their location and view but they don’t own it,” he said.
“Loss of view cannot be a consideration for us to make.”
Mr Pickard also responded to an earlier question from a resident who asked what the City would do if a “drunk came out of the pub and ripped up a tree”.
Mr Pickard said the City would replace the tree then erect a large sign next to the tree “that would remain for a long time to educate the community about the importance of trees in our local environment and the unlawful activity to remove a tree”.
“My message to the local residents that live along Oceanside Prom is to be vigilant of that type of activity occurring and if you do see someone acting suspiciously trying to poison or remove trees, to report it to the Joondalup rangers and we’ll take the appropriate action,” he said.
Infrastructure services director Nico Claassen said the proposed peppermint trees, which are only expected to grow to 4m, would fit well in the area.
“We needed to find an appropriate street tree with the right shape, size and canopy,” he said.
Councillors voted unanimously to retain the trees and to accept the $865,453 tender from Ertech for works to be completed by December 2.