Works Committee Meeting

 

  BUSINESS PAPER

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tuesday 13 March 2012

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Administrative Centre 30 Frances Street Randwick 2031

Telephone: 02 9399 0999 or

1300 722 542 (for Sydney metropolitan area)

Fax:02 9319 1510

general.manager@randwick.nsw.gov.au

www.randwick.nsw.gov.au


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Works Committee                                                                                                 13 March 2012

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Works Committee Meeting

 

Notice is hereby given that a Works Committee Meeting of the Council of the City of Randwick will be held in the Council Chamber, Town Hall, 90 Avoca Street, Randwick, on Tuesday, 13 March 2012 at 6pm.

 

 

Committee Members:           The Mayor (S Nash), Andrews, Belleli, Bowen, Hughes (Deputy Chairperson), Matson, Matthews (Chairperson), Notley-Smith, Procopiadis, Seng, Smith, Stevenson, Tracey, White and Woodsmith

 

Quorum:                           Eight (8) members

 

NOTE:    At the Extraordinary Meeting held on 28 September 2004, the Council resolved that the Works Committee be constituted as a committee with full delegation to determine matters on the agenda.

 

Apologies/Granting of Leave of Absences 

Confirmation of the Minutes  

Works Committee Meeting - 14 February 2012

Declarations of Pecuniary and Non-Pecuniary Interests

Address of Committee by Members of the Public

Urgent Business

Works Reports

W3/12       Tree Removal - Outside 20 Figtree Avenue, Randwick

W4/12       Council-Owned Ficus 'Hillii' (Hill's Weeping Fig) Growing Outside 1-3 Gale Road, Maroubra

W5/12       Emergency Drainage Repair Works at 202 Clovelly Road, Randwick    

Notice of Rescission Motions

Nil 

 

 

 

…………………………………………………….

Ray Brownlee

General Manager


Works Committee                                                                                                 13 March 2012

 

 

Works Report No. W3/12

 

 

Subject:                  Tree Removal - Outside 20 Figtree Avenue, Randwick

Folder No:                   F2004/07859

Author:                   Bryan Bourke, Tree Management Officer     

 

Introduction

 

The owner of 20 Figtree Avenue, Randwick, wrote to Council on 4 November 2011 detailing a variety of issues and damage being caused by the roots of a Council-owned Ficus ‘Hillii’ (Hill’s Weeping fig) growing on the nature strip outside his property.

 

Issues

 

The property owner has nominated a range of damage being caused by the subject tree, including cracking and undermining of the front brick fence, large roots encroaching into the front garden area and large roots regularly destroying the footpath and double width driveway outside 20-22 Figtree Avenue.

 

Fig tree roots have also entered the residence itself and are pushing off the wallpaper in the front bedroom, hallway and bathroom area.

 

The subject tree is approximately 15 metres in height with canopy spread of around 14 metres. It is in good health and contributes significantly to the Figtree Avenue streetscape. It is an important provider of habitat and food source for a variety of native birdlife and other fauna.

 

It forms part of a predominantly single species streetscape which is listed in Council’s Register of Significant Trees – primarily because the seventeen figs growing along both sides of the avenue have notable visual, aesthetic, cultural and social importance.

 

Over the past decade the adjacent footpath has had to be repaired on a number of occasions because of tree root damage but roots continue to enter two adjacent properties as well as cause ongoing and increasing damage to public infrastructure.

 

Council recently trenched along the front of this particular property and this revealed a number of large fig tree roots. Roots from the tree form a large mass that has completely destroyed the surrounding footpath area and double driveway, as well as undermining the adjacent brick fence. 

 

Council’s Tree Gang arborist advises that it would not be possible to remove the amount of damaging tree root material required to abate the damage being caused by the roots of this tree without seriously compromising its stability and long-term viability.

 

Relationship to City Plan

 

The relationship with the City Plan is as follows:

 

Outcome 10:      A Healthy Environment.

Direction 10b:    Environmental risks and impacts are strategically managed.

 

Financial impact statement

 

It is estimated that the removal of the tree outside 20 Figtree Avenue and its replacement with a super-advanced alternative species will cost in the vicinity of $3,000. The required funds would come from Council’s annual tree management budget.

 

Conclusion

 

The Council-owned Ficus ‘Hillii’ growing outside 20 Figtree Avenue, Randwick, has significant visual and historic significance. This avenue is one of only three streets containing numbers of this species which are listed on Council’s Register of Significant Trees.

 

The subject tree is estimated to be approximately sixty years old and up until this point every effort has been made to retain it, despite the fact that associated tree root damage has progressively increased in both frequency and severity.

 

The tree has been assessed as having significant scenic and amenity value and with providing important habitat and food source for a variety of fauna. Because of the damage being caused by its roots, the impact of removal on land degradation would be negligible.

 

Using Australian Standard ASDR99307 it has been calculated that the tree has an amenity value of $14,400.

 

Because of the size and amount of root material required to be removed from the tree outside 20 Figtree Avenue to effectively deal with the damage being caused by its roots, root pruning is not in any way a viable option. This is supported by the findings and recommendations of Council’s two Tree Gang arborists when a trench was dug adjacent to where the tree is situated. The only feasible long-term management option would be to remove the tree entirely and to replace it with a more appropriate tree species – as nominated in Council’s Street Tree Masterplan.

 

The removal of this tree would certainly have a detrimental impact on the streetscape and this would be exacerbated by the fact that two other Ficus ‘Hillii’ street trees have been removed from outside 22 and 24 Figtree Avenue within the past two years. Its removal would contravene Council’s resolution that in streets where Hill’s Weeping figs are the predominant species no more than five percent canopy cover is removed within any one calendar year but it would be unreasonable to expect the adjacent property owner to put up with damage to his property continuing and in fact getting worse into the future.

 

The owner of this property also owns 22 Figtree Avenue and he is currently in the process of undertaking major repairs caused by the roots of the fig tree that was removed outside that property. He rightly suggests it would be prudent and cost effective to undertake any required rectification works at 20 Figtree Avenue at the same time as the works at his other property.

 

Recommendation

 

That the Council-owned Ficus ‘Hillii’ (Hill’s Weeping fig) growing outside 20 Figtree Avenue, Randwick, be removed and replaced with a Waterhousia floribunda (Weeping Lilly Pilly) – as nominated in Council’s Street Tree Masterplan.

 

 

 

Attachment/s:

 

1.View

Series of photographs detailing the importance of the subject tree in the streetscape and the range of damage being caused to both public infrastructure and private property by its roots.

 

 

 

 


Series of photographs detailing the importance of the subject tree in the streetscape and the range of damage being caused to both public infrastructure and private property by its roots.

Attachment 1

 

 

View of Ficus ‘Hillii’ street tree showing its importance in the streetscape

 

 

Large tree roots underneath footpath and double driveway into 20-22 Figtree Ave

 

 

Large fig tree root immediately adjacent to gas and water pipes into property

 

 

Twisted fig tree roots undermining driveway entrance into 20-22 Figtree Ave

 

 

 

Several Ficus ‘Hillii’ tree roots under tessellated tile entranceway into property

 

 

Large snaking tree root undermining footpath, driveway and entering 22 Figtree Ave


 

Ficus ‘Hillii’ tree roots are evident throughout the front lawn area of 20 Figtree Ave

 

 

Cracking in front brick fence at 20 Figtree Ave evident in several places


 

Fig tree roots are pushing off the wallpaper in front bedroom of 20 Figtree Ave

 


Works Committee                                                                                                 13 March 2012

 

 

Works Report No. W4/12

 

 

Subject:                  Council-Owned Ficus 'Hillii' (Hill's Weeping Fig) Growing Outside 1-3 Gale Road, Maroubra

Folder No:                   F2004/07359

Author:                   Bryan Bourke, Tree Management Officer     

 

Introduction

 

The resident at 3 Gale Road, Maroubra, has written to Council detailing a range of issues and damage being caused by the roots of a large Council-owned Ficus ‘Hillii’ (Hill’s Weeping fig) street tree growing on the nature strip outside that property.

 

This correspondence is accompanied by a petition from the residents/ owners of 3A Gale Road and 6, 8 and 10 Mason Street requesting that the problems associated with this tree be addressed as a matter of urgency.

 

Issues

 

The subject tree is highly significant in the streetscape and is the only one of this species growing along the western end of Mason Street, Maroubra.

 

It is approximately twenty metres in height with a canopy spread of around twenty-five metres. It is in very good health and is an important provider of habitat and food source for a variety of native birdlife and other fauna.

 

There is very little deadwood within the canopy and the only pruning that has been required over the years has been to periodically clear several domestic service wires.

 

As a result, the canopy extends well over the roadway and the properties at 1 and 3 Mason Street.

 

The petition presented to Council highlights a number of issues associated with this tree, ranging from regular and ongoing sewer blockages and damage to private and public infrastructure to seasonal fruit drop and concerns about flying foxes.

 

In late 2011 the residents at 3 Gale Road experienced a serious incident when their back yard was flooded with sewerage as a result of a blockage caused by the roots of this tree. They advise that this is not the first time this has occurred.

If this was the only damage being caused it could probably be rectified by installing PVC sewer pipes but I have spoken to the owner of 8 Mason Street, Maroubra, and he states that roots from this tree regularly block his sewer pipes and have intruded into the Sydney Water mains behind his property.

 

Tree root damage both outside and within the front of 3 Mason Street is extensive and extends right down the eastern side of the property.

 

Relationship to City plan

 

Outcome 10:         A Healthy Environment.

Direction 10b:        Environmental risks and impacts are strategically managed.

Key Action:           Develop and implement policies, programs and strategies to manage environmental risks and impacts.

 

Financial Impact Statement

 

The cost to remove and stump grind this tree and to replace it with two super-advanced Waterhousia floribunda (Weeping Lilly Pillys) would be in the vicinity of $3500 and this would come from Council’s annual tree management budget.

 

Conclusion

 

The roots of this tree are causing ongoing and increasing damage to the adjacent footpath and private property and it drops copious amounts of fruit onto the footpath, nature strip and adjoining properties. Both these problems constitute a very real liability issue for Council – although the footpath could be repaired in bitumen (only a temporary measure) and the fruiting issue is seasonal. Branches have to be periodically pruned out of the domestic service wires and the canopy creates significant shadowing of the adjacent footpath at night. The roots of the tree have intruded into two adjacent properties and are causing (or have the potential to cause) serious structural damage to both those properties.

 

Of major concern is that this particular tree will eventually cost Council a considerable amount of money for property repairs – as well as constituting an ongoing trip/liability hazard.

 

The removal and replacement of this fig tree would certainly fall within the parameters originally set out in Council’s resolution relating to aggressive-rooted street trees, although its removal would have a major impact on visual amenity of the surrounding streetscape. This would be negated to some degree by the fact that this specimen is the only one of this species on the western end of Mason Street and that if removed it would be replaced with two fast-growing Lilly Pillys. This section of street is also planted out with a number of established street trees of varying species.

 

Recommendation

 

That the Council owned Ficus microcarpa var. ‘Hillii’ (Hill’s Weeping fig) growing on the nature strip outside 1-3 Mason Street, Maroubra, be removed and replaced with an appropriate number of more appropriate tree species – as per Council’s Street Tree Masterplan.

 

Attachment/s:

 

1.View

Series of photographs highlighting the significance of the Council owned fig tree in the streetscape and the range and scope of tree root damage to both public infrastructure and private property being caused by the subject tree.

 

 

 

 


Series of photographs highlighting the significance of the Council owned fig tree in the streetscape and the range and scope of tree root damage to both public infrastructure and private property being caused by the subject tree.

Attachment 1

 

 

 

Ficus ‘Hilli’ is highly prominent in the Mason Street streetscape

 

 

Fig tree roots have caused severe infrastructure damage and ongoing sewer blockages

Tree roots have damaged and dislodged the front brick fences at 1 and 3 Mason St

 

 

Tree root buttressing has damaged the adjacent Telstra pit and cover 

Major cracking within the front yard area and entranceway into 3 Mason Street

 

 

Fig tree roots cover the entire nature strip area and prohibit driveway construction


Works Committee                                                                                                 13 March 2012

 

 

Works Report No. W5/12

 

 

Subject:                  Emergency Drainage Repair Works at 202 Clovelly Road, Randwick

Folder No:                   F2010/00108

Author:                   Stephen Audet, Coordinator Engineering Services     

 

Introduction

 

A section of Council’s underground drainage pipeline passes through a drainage easement within the strata property of 202 Clovelly Road, Randwick.

 

A short section of this 600mm diameter pipe collapsed during heavy rains on the evening of January 25 2012 resulting in flooding of the neighbouring property at 200 Clovelly Road and a substantial amount of sand being washed away from around the pipe.

 

The collapsed pipe resulted in necessary investigation and emergency repairs to ensure the structural integrity of the adjacent residential apartment building.

 

Issues

 

The pipeline was investigated using a closed circuit television camera and it determined that only a short section of the pipeline had failed.  The repair of this section of collapsed pipe is underway as emergency work.

 

It was also observed that there were isolated areas of damage along the line that should be addressed in the near future in order to manage the risk of future collapses of the pipeline within private property.  It was determined that the most cost effective solution to address these issues would be to install a structural liner along the full length of the pipeline between Clovelly Road and Marcel Avenue following replacement of the short section of collapsed pipe.

 

The 2011-12 drainage capital works budget is fully committed.  However, the emergency repairs are needed to prevent undermining of buildings and flooding of adjacent properties.

 

The estimated cost of the emergency repair works is $35,000.  This work has commenced and it is proposed that this amount is to be funded from infrastructure reserves and be repaid from the 2012-13 Drainage Capital Works Budget.

 

In addition, it is proposed that the 2012-13 Drainage Capital Works Budget include $100,000 as the total cost of the project, including the emergency work and relining work.  This amount will be used to repay the $35,000 for the emergency works.

 

Relationship to City Plan

 

The relationship with the City Plan is as follows:

 

Outcome 6:        A Liveable City.

Direction 6a:       Our public assets are planned, managed and funded to meet the community expectations and defined levels of service.

Key Action:         Assets are managed strategically to deliver intergenerational equity and to meet Council’s obligation as the custodian of our community’s assets.

Financial impact statement

 

This report recommends that $35,000 be funded from infrastructure reserves to pay for emergency work in the 2011-12 financial year.  The report also recommends that $100,000 for the project be included in the 2012-13 capital works budget.  This amount will be used to repay the funds from infrastructure reserves and undertake relining of the pipeline between Clovelly Road and Marcel Avenue.

 

Conclusion

 

The underground drainage assets that run through the easement at 202 Clovelly Road and down to Marcel Avenue are necessary to manage stormwater in this area.  The recent pipeline collapse has highlighted the need for both emergency repairs and programmed capital works.  These works are necessary to ensure that the pipeline does not impact structurally on residential buildings adjacent to the pipelines in the future.

 

Recommendation

 

That:

 

a)     the report on the collapsed drainage pipeline at 202 Clovelly Road be received and noted.

 

b)     an amount of $35,000 for emergency repair works to replace the short section of collapsed drainage pipeline is funded from infrastructure reserves to allow the work to be carried out during the 2011-12 financial year.

 

c)     the 2012-13 Drainage Capital Works Budget include an allowance of $100,000 for the repair and relining of the pipeline, with the emergency works component of this amount to be repaid into infrastructure reserves.

 

Attachment/s:

 

Nil