Meeting opposes 'Ocean wart'

May 13, 1998

By Tony Iltis

HOBART — Hobart Town Hall was filled to capacity for a meeting organised by the Denison branch of the Tasmanian Greens to oppose the proposed Oceanport retail and residential development at Princes Wharf.

The proposed six-story complex — dubbed "Ocean Wart" and "Ocean Rort" by locals — would dwarf the 160-year-old street scape of Salamanca Place and deny public access to the waterfront.

Speakers at the 300-strong meeting included the Greens, Salamanca market traders, the Salamanca Merchants Association, secondary students who have been organising petitions against the development, and town planners.

The meeting was told that the "project of state significance" legislation, which is being used to rush the development through, by-passes normal public consultation procedures.

Earlier this year, when the famous liner the QE2 visited Hobart, the captain was quoted in the local press as saying that his passengers chose Hobart as a destination because of it's unique open waterfront and it's historic buildings, and that Oceanport would deter rather than attract cruise ships.

The meeting passed two resolutions. One opposed Oceanport and called for an appropriate development with community input. The other called for the development's "project of state significance" status to be rescinded. Tasmanian Greens MP Peg Putt will introduce a bill in state parliament to rescind that status.

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