Port dust-up

• Tony De Rosa and Domenic Canci say the dust in Port Coogee has become unbearable. Photos by Steve Grant

RESIDENTS living in million-dollar apartments overlooking the Port Coogee marina say dust problems have become so bad they’re considering moving out.

Tony De Rosa lives on the ground floor of an apartment complex on Chieftain Esplanade and says the long-delayed completion of the $10-billion development is making his life miserable.

“Because it’s from the groundworks, it’s limestone dust which is corrosive, and I know a few people who suffer from hayfever and it definitely makes it worse,” Mr De Rosa said.

He says a young grandson always complains about respiratory problems when he’s visiting, but they mysteriously vanish when he goes home.

Mr De Rosa says despite living next to the ocean, he can’t leave his doors open to enjoy a breeze because it comes with too much unwanted dust. His balcony would be a great place to enjoy the view, but it’s too dirty to sit there.

“I could wash it today and tomorrow I would have to do it again,” he groans.

• Even the plants are coated in white, powdery dust.

Mr De Rosa and three-year resident Domenic Canci take the Herald on a tour of the neighbourhood, pointing out almost-white plants, window sills where you can’t see the original metal for the dust, numerous vacant blocks, and a proposed eatery they say will have Buckley’s of succeeding unless something’s done.

Mr Canci’s black Mustang should be his pride and joy, but the only drifting it’s seen are the piles of dust around its tyres. Mr Canci says a big problem is the vacant peninsula which surrounds the marina. Frasers Property Group owns the large block and gives it an annual mulch, but Mr Canci says that breaks down pretty quickly given it’s next to the ocean.

“Why doesn’t the developer park and grass it up and give it back to the community?” Mr Canci wonders.

The pair reckon that in the wake of the banking royal commission, it could be 20 years before it’s fully developed and they can’t wait that long.

They also want the council to crack down on other land-bankers in the area.

Cockburn council’s environmental health manager Nick Jones says while they’d support a temporary park on the peninsula, that was up to Frasers and it had been checked and cleared of being a dusty culprit.

• Dust in the internal carpark at Port Coogee marina.

Mr Jones says 17 out of the 40 dust complaints the council has received this summer have come from Port Coogee.

“Most of the complaints relate to fairly small vacant blocks that are regularly disturbed by builders’ vehicles and dust is released especially during strong winds,” Mr Jones said.

The council has organised an annual hydromulching service for property owners for the past six years, helping to reduce their costs. The Chook called Frasers about a temporary park and they said they’d have a look at the idea and get back to us.

by STEVE GRANT

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