So the Vic govt. has announced they're opening national parks to development. (Not sure how that works- aren't they NATIONAL parks?) Whatever, their first target is Point Nepean, a beautiful but previously inaccessible spot known to surfers. And on the other side of the bay, as someone with a particular fondness for the waves, beach, cliffs etc. at Point Addis, I don't want to see the place turned into another Torquay or Ocean Grove, with car parking for half of Melbourne. And, yes, there's more to life than surfing- I'm told- and the environmental values of these places are just too high to allow Matthew Guy's buddies in with their bulldozers and BMWs.
Victorian National parks Association are organising a letter-writing campaign:
Kind of feels like something more is needed though.
As some-one who has stayed and walked in national parks extensively in Victoria and in most other states and throughout NZ I offer these comments:
Victorian national parks seem to be massively under funded in that existing facilities are often run down or in a state of total disrepair. Accommodation is often poor and /or well over priced for what you get. Walking tracks are poorly maintained causing erosion. Weed infestation is rampant. By comparison national parks in NSW, Qld, SA and NT seem to be better resourced and maintained.
So I would say more money is needed for Victorian national parks regardless of what happens with any proposed future developments.
On the Victorian governments plans to open up parks to development I have an open mind. If the developments are like those at Cradle Mountain or the Freycinet Peninsula in Tasmania I would support them but I would strongly disagree with multi-level Hilton hotel style proposals.
We all rightly need to be alert to environmentally poor development plans but likewise what emerges might be good.
Yes, in principle there's not necessarily anything wrong with the idea of development that's environmentally sensitive, if the proceeds help to maintain the park. (A big IF!) But as it stands at the moment it's a case of "Trust us, we're the government". And given their track record on alpine grazing, green wedges and my-skyscraper's-bigger-than-yours, it's hard to be too confident.
I love the idea, as the twelve apostles fall down one by one they can be replaced by multi-level hilton style hotel set on triangular shaped foundations to make a surfable wave to protect the hotel from the brunt of the wave, of course you would only be allowed to surf it if your a paying guest.
Love your work Shaun, it is so good to see someone thinks outside the box. The apostle that fell a few years ago could be replaced by a skyscraper, a twin sister skycraper to the one being built in Melbourne, make it so high you will be able to see the top of the other one in Melbourne. That will really put Victoria on the map and create jobs so we can all work and surf in and around the Port Campbell area. Where is the link to support the development?