Hinterland Place Plan providing positive outcomes

16 November 2023

Port Stephens Council has unanimously supported a new Place Plan for the Port Stephens Hinterland.

The Hinterland Place Plan was developed in partnership with the local community and reflects their values and priorities, outlining actions to improve the liveability and wellbeing of the Hinterland community.

Mayor Ryan Palmer said the adoption of the Place Plan is a positive outcome for the residents and business in the Port Stephens Hinterland. 

“We know that our rural communities are changing; the impacts of ongoing weather events and increasing development are challenges rural land owners continue to face,” Mayor Palmer said.

“The Hinterland Place Plan seeks solutions to these challenges and identifies new opportunities to improve economic and social outcomes,” he added.

Strategy and Environment Section Manager Brock Lamont said community input into the Hinterland Place Plan was critical to its success.

“Through several community engagement sessions, a survey and face to face discussions, we had the opportunity to learn about the priorities of the Hinterland community,” Mr Lamont said.

“We know residents in the Hinterland would like to see more pedestrian friendly activities, better connectivity between towns and villages and the protection of the unique local environment. The actions have been designed to reflect these priorities and create genuine outcomes in the Hinterland.

“There’s also a range of actions that can be championed by the community including the Seaham Shared Pathways Project.

“The Seaham Shared Pathway Project was the brainchild of the late Brian Gilligan of Seaham and aimed to protect, enhance and build community pride in the very unique Seaham Swamp.

“This project celebrates local history, provides interpretive information for visitors and has created some spaces to connect, rest and relax. It’s a great example of the community working in partnership with Council to improve liveability and wellbeing,” Mr Lamont added.

Council will also be working closely with residents and business in the Hinterland to help establish a new Town Team for the Port Stephens Hinterland.

“The Town Teams model has been used over the past year in both Karuah and Medowie with some really positive outcomes from the collaborations created,” Mr Lamont said.

“We’ll work closely with our schools, residents and business to make sure we achieve the same outcomes for the Hinterland,” Mr Lamont added.

To read the Hinterland Place Plan or find out how to get involved in the Hinterland Town Team, visit pscouncil.info/hinterland-place-plan