Red Hill and its adjacent Yellow Box – Red Gum woodland has been subject to developments which have intruded around the urban edge, and it also has been subject to intrusion within the hill itself.
Water reservoirs have been proposed and built on Red Hill since 1912. Two large water reservoirs were built in 1939. Further reservoirs and access tracks were constructed in the 1950s. They were built to augment the water supply from Mt Stromlo reservoir to the suburb of Red Hill and southern Canberra.
Red Hill has seen the intrusion of roads, power lines, water reservoirs and has been the site of a quarry and rubbish tip while a considerable portion was excised for a golf course.
A portion of high value Yellow Box-red Gum woodland on the south side of Hindmarsh Drive was developed for the suburb of East O’Malley. Virtually all of the original old trees have been progressively removed.
The Federal Golf Club currently holds a concessional lease which incorporates a significant area of high value Yellow Box – Red Gum woodland. This woodland is indistinguishable from the Red Hill Reserve and continues to be managed by the Regenerators. Much of the undeveloped land within the fenced boundary of the Golf Club has not been managed as required by the lease conditions and is overrun with woody weeds. The Golf Club have made a number of applications to develop parts of their lease, and the federal government has investigated parts of the lease for development as embassy sites. These developments would all impact negatively on the reserve and its ongoing management as critically endangered woodland and have been vigorously opposed by the Regenerators and adjacent residential leaseholders. To date (2014), no developments have been approved, and representations have been made to the ACT Government to incorporate the high value woodland parts of the Golf Club lease into the Red Hill reserve.
Constant vigilance is required to minimise damage to the Reserve through the actions of government owned utility companies, proposals to widen access roads, proposals to bulldoze new tracks for the Centennary Trail, poorly designed and supervised controlled burns, damage to fences and interpretation signs, rubbish dumping etc.