Daniel Drive residents John Simpson, Ross Katchel and Peter Quinn are unhappy about run off from a development ending up in their co-owned dam.
Daniel Drive residents John Simpson, Ross Katchel and Peter Quinn are unhappy about run off from a development ending up in their co-owned dam. Renee Pilcher

Oh Diana, water feature a concern

A LARGE dam at Pie Creek, known as Lake Diana, is gradually being degraded by a nearby development, according to a group of Daniel Drive residents.

Co-owners of the dam: John Simpson, Ross and Jenny Katchel, and Peter and Sheryl Butler, say the degradation of the water feature began when stage one of Greendale Downs development commenced.

The irony, Mr Simpson says, is that the lake was a selling point of the development, but the development is now destroying it.

Mr Simpson claims inadequate drainage from when the work began caused runoff problems from the start. He said the group’s objections to Gympie Regional Council were met with the attitude it had little or no recourse.

“We were shown engineering drawings and told this is what was going to happen – without any consultation,” Mr Simpson said.

Previously fertile farmland, runoff was originally managed naturally by vegetation which acted as a filtration system. Once removed during earthworks, there was nothing to stop soil and non-degradable rubbish washing down into the dam, Mr Simpson said.

Ross Katchel said silt has already filled his western end of the dam. And now with stage two of the development well underway, the group fears worse is to come, despite an attempt by the developer to alleviate the runoff problem by building a gravel filtration retaining wall.

Should it ever rain heavily , the residents say the rock wall will prove inadequate and they cannot get “a guarantee” it will stop rubbish from flowing into the dam.

Mr Simpson said while the developer’s site engineer said the proposed system could handle the relevant flows, she stated that in times of excessive rainfall it could offer no guarantee.

Neighbour to the east of the dam, Peter Quinn fears any pollution will leach down into Pie Creek, then Eel Creek and eventually the Mary River.

Works and Services chairman Larry Friske told The Gympie Times that any silting of the dam was likely to be short term.

“For the community to grow, we have to have subdivisions,” he said.

He added while this particular subdivision was of a “very high” standard, by the nature of the work carried out, there would be some disturbance but it would only be short-term.

He said developers are required to put in silt fences to alleviate any run off problems during construction, and during the 12-month maintenance period they would be required to de-silt the dam and keep it clean.

Longer term, grasses and vegetation would grow back to create a natural barrier just as effective as before.

“It’s everybody’s intent to have the area grassed and looking good,” Cr Friske said.

Gympie Times


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