McMahons’ locals up in arms over floating dry dock



Hundreds of locals of the Berrys Bay area have expressed concern to North Sydney Council over the potential development of a large-vessel floating dock. 

The dry dock will be able to accommodate vessels of up to 750 tonnes and will be located at Noakes Boatyard, McMahons Point. 

Locals are worried the dock will damage the scenic nature of the area, and the removal of two fixed pile jetties, necessary for the development, may stir up tributyltin-contaminated sediment. 

Tributyltin, a compound once commonly used in the painting of boat hulls, is easily dispersed through the surrounding environment and can be noxious to marine life.

Mayor Jilly Gibson reveals she has been inundated with residents expressing their concerns.

“People have been stopping me in the streets and ringing me about this issue,” she tells North Shore Living

“The visual impact in such a small bay would be catastrophic, and I stand with local residents in opposing the development application.”

In response to the submissions received, Council passed a motion in May requesting the Sydney North Planning Panel (SNPP) host a public briefing about the dry dock. 

According to Mayor Gibson, the SNPP session will likely be held this month, however the decision on the development could extend into next year.

Sean Langman, managing director of Noakes, says the company is working with the NSW Environment Protection Agency (EPA) to implement best practice in the removal of the jetties. 

He says the size of the vessels Noakes plans to host at the dock will be the same as the current size berthed and therefore, the contentions of locals and council are groundless.

“I believe the concerns are unfounded and born from a few individuals that would rather the yard go to improve their property worth,” he states. 

“Australia needs companies to keep jobs in Australia. Noakes offers that. Any citizen, and especially politician, should be proud of Noakes.”

Stephanie Aikins

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