An election promise to invest $55 million to make Appin Road safer has been welcomed by Total Environment Centre (TEC), which says its own plan for koalas would turn Macarthur into a huge eco tourist destination.
It says Appin Road is one of “Sydney’s most notorious koala killer hotspots’’.
Until the Western Sydney development boom instigated by the Berejiklian Government started turning koalas into roadkill on an increasingly busy Appin Road, the Macarthur area had one of the only chlamydia free koala populations in Australia and the colony was thriving, TEC said in a media statement.
TEC says it’s “relieved’’ that humans and koalas will benefit from this overdue correction to Appin Road.
The Labor Party’s Dr Mike Freelander last week announced an election promise to create a land bridge connecting the Nepean River side to the Georges River side, which will save koalas plus other native fauna.
“This is a significant improvement over the expedient exclusion fencing plan by Road and Maritime Services and the Department of Planning to deal with the visuals of dead koalas on the road,” says TEC koala campaigner Saul Deane.
TEC director Jeff Angel says this plan would imprison the koala population in the east while those on the western side would die out as development advances.
He said TEC proposes an alternative vision – a Two Rivers Koala Frontier Park – which would capitalize on Campbelltown’s headwater, koala and frontier heritage and turn the area into an international tourist destination.
“Macarthur’s future ecological and economic health is dependent on putting the survival of Sydney’s koala ahead of property developer expediency,” Mr Angel said.