Legal challenge possible for community garden

A LEGAL challenge could be made against plans for a community garden in Bunya Park, Eleebana.

Lake Macquarie City Council voted last Monday to allow the Warners Bay Community Garden Group to submit a development application for a community garden.

However, Ann Loughran, a horticulturalist with 30 years' experience, said the park was not suitable for a community garden.

Ms Loughran said she was involved in planting more than 8000 plants at Bunya Park as a Landcare volunteer and was concerned that the park's soil, slope and hydrology would make it a difficult site.

She believed the extent of the park's "endangered ecological community" could be disputed.

Ms Loughran suggested the garden group get an environmental lawyer because the Land and Environment Court may be needed "to sort it out".

Council community planning manager John Ferguson said the park's slope and soil conditions had been considered and soil was "in a range that is ideal for growing plants" and the park had a 7 per cent slope.

He said the site did not have a flooding problem but the soil became sodden at times, which could be managed with the garden's design.

Mayor Greg Piper said Ms Loughran's concerns would be considered when the garden group submits a development application.

The garden group said it had experts in horticulture, hydrology and other fields, and had a strategy to protect the vegetation and creek from "any risk from nutrients, weeds or other possible impacts".