Hairy joint grass forces changes

THE developers of the $60 million Pacific Pines master planned village at Lennox Head, Petrac, are facing a hurdle because hairy joint grass has been found at the site.

The grass, which has the scientific name of Arthraxon hispidus, is listed as a vulnerable species in northern NSW and southern Queensland, which means it is protected under the Federal Government's Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999.

At a Lennox Head Residents' Association community meeting recently, Rob Van Iersel of consultant company GeoLink, speaking on behalf of Petrac, said the developers were negotiating with the state government about how it would deal with the hairy joint grass.

He said the grass was discovered late in the planning stage.

“It may result in a larger area being dedicated to public open space to allow for the ongoing conservation of the grass,” Mr Van Iersel said.

He also said it could result in some changes to the layout of the village, including the possibility of a bridge being built over a section of the grass where a road was planned.

However, he confirmed it would not take away from the existing area designated for open space, or from the playing fields.

The Pacific Pines project includes a range of new amenities for community use, including sport and recreation fields, natural reserves and a neighbourhood centre.

The project includes residential and retirement living and is being assessed by the State Government.

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