City of Newcastle will relocate up to 16 beachfront cabins at Stockton Holiday Park and has made the difficult decision to immediately close Lexie’s Café ahead of the second east coast low to batter Newcastle in a week.
The cabins will be moved indefinitely to Crown Land managed by the City under reserve trust on the eastern side of the Stockton Swimming Centre, south of the Skate Park.
City of Newcastle Infrastructure and Property Director Ken Liddell said the actions are necessary to protect public assets and safety with heavy swells expected to hit the coast over the next few days, as Cyclone Uesi tracks south.
“While we welcome the State Government declaring a natural disaster for Stockton this week, we are taking immediate action to protect important public assets.
“The cabins, previously protected by about 10 metres of dune vegetation, are now at imminent risk from the swells.
“So we’ve taken the decision to move them to community land next to the swimming pool, where they will be safely tucked away behind King Street carpark and the Stockton breakwater.
“By moving the remainder of the cabins, we will avoid sacrificing more sites for caravans and tents within the existing footprint of the park.”
The City will look to re-open the cabins on the new site after following due process, including site investigation, community consultation and planning approval.
“Once we’ve secured the remainder of the holiday park and this weekend’s threat has passed, we will look at the planning requirements for the site and lodge a DA as soon as possible to begin leasing them out again.”
For the same reasons, City of Newcastle has closed the city-owned building held by Lexie’s Café until it is again safe for the public to enter.
“The impact of the recent wild weather which the State Government has now recognised as a natural disaster, combined with forecast huge swells this weekend, mean we can no longer guarantee public safety at Lexie’s Café,” Liddell said.
“Given this, we have had to make the extremely difficult decision to immediately close and barricade the building. We understand that Lexie’s has become a much-loved part of the Stockton community and this decision was only made after examining computer modelling of the likely impact of the forecast huge swells this weekend.
“It is for the same reason that we have had to relocate several of the most eastern cabins at the caravan park. We are losing sand at a record rate, and with the impact of tropical Cyclone Uesi likely to be felt at Stockton as soon as this weekend, we had to close the building held by Lexie’s Café.
“We again call upon the NSW Government to recognise that mandated processes for long term solutions to coastal erosion at Stockton should no longer apply given the natural disaster that is now much of the eastern coast of Stockton.”