BY CELESTE VILLANI
EASTERN COURIER MESSENGER
STANDING on a bridge in his Millswood backyard, Don Osborn looks down at the now-dry Brown Hill Creek bed.
In the 12 years since he built his house, the creek has flooded just once.
But, under a plan to widen the creek by as much as 10m to reduce the risk of flooding downstream, Mr Osborn fears he will lose control of some of his land – by his reckoning, around 20 per cent of his property.
A pepper tree, which about 10 years ago Unley Council described as “untouchable”, may now have to be removed.
More than 250 trees along the creek potentially face the axe.
Mr Osborn is one of more than 37 residents seeking up to $16 million in compensation for easements to widen Brown Hill Creek.
The proposed easements along a 1.9km section of the creek are said to be the answer to a one-in-100-year flood.
Duncan Basheer Hannon Lawyers, acting on behalf of the landowners, has written to Unley, Mitcham, Burnside, West Torrens and Adelaide councils urging them to “reflect on the wisdom” of the proposed flood mitigation plan.
The letter said low offers would cause “significant disruption and, if necessary, litigation”. Steering group chairman Terry Buss, also West Torrens chief executive, said it was not clear whether the threat of legal action would delay the plan to floodproof 2000 homes, the majority in his council area.
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