(1) What the Government is up to!
Environmental Impact Statement
The EIS has been put on exhibition with a minimum of fanfare. See media release here.
Having been assured by INSW that it would be on public exhibition for 45 days, the Government has reneged on this. It will be on exhibition from 14 June to 11 July – 28 days. For a development with such pervasive impacts on the community and parkland, this is completely unacceptable. The Government clearly is just going through the motions. Nevertheless, we call on as many people as possible to make a submission on the EIS.
A link to the EIS is here.
Call for Expressions of Interest
Expressions of interest have been called here so as to enable the preparation of a shortlist to whom the Government will issue a request for Tender. Why not wait until the community’s views have been heard?
(2) Saving Moore Park’s submission to the Public Works Committee Inquiry into the Sydney stadiums strategy
This is here. The following is a selective summary:
1. The decision to redevelop the Sydney Football Stadium
The Government should be asking why those responsible for appalling governance of an important State asset should retain their positions. Instead it is rewarding the Trust by giving them a new Stadium. This is setting a poor example for those responsible for the governance of other major State assets.
2. The SFS – Where to from here?
We are concerned at what seems to be a compression of the development timeline in an effort to get the project so far advanced by early 2019 that an incoming Labor Government would be unable to reverse it. How can the community’s views on the Stage 1 EIS be fully taken into account in the tendering process if the timeline is not aligned to facilitate this?
3. Opportunities for Public Input
There is no provision for a Community Consultative Committee during Stage 1 of the SFS redevelopment. We’re concerned this decision has been driven by administrative convenience rather than the needs of the community. This project is highly complex and has potentially major impacts on many residents and Moore Park.
In 2016, the SCG Trust established the Trust Advisory Group (TAG) for the local community “to provide feedback and advice on current and future plans for the SCG precinct”. However, the Trust excluded the TAG from the schedule of briefings INSW has had with various interested parties. Some people may conclude from this that the TAG exists for ‘window-dressing purposes’ rather than as a genuine vehicle for community consultation.
4. Impact of new SFS on Moore Park
We understand the budget for the new stadium doesn’t include funds for integration with Moore Park after construction. Issues include parking arrangements and pedestrian access and dispersal planning, lighting and signage. There are also broader impacts – such as traffic management planning, managing the impact of increased crowds on the local community and the impact on nearby commercial operations in the EQ, Fox Studios, etc.
5. Funding for Moore Park
Although the City of Sydney is not the consent authority, it appears the State Government may be proposing to make a substantial contribution to it because of “the demand for public amenities and public services within the area” arising from the SFS redevelopment. While some payment to the City of Sydney may be appropriate, this will be a wasted opportunity for the Government to allocate significant funds for the remediation and upgrading of Moore Park. We therefore call on the Government to make a sizeable development contribution to the Centennial Park & Moore Park Trust for use in progressing the Moore Park Master Plan.
6. Future of Driver Avenue
if the new stadium proceeds, and follows best practice design principles, there will be no need to close Driver Avenue for safety and security reasons.
7. New Building on existing SCG land
The SCG Trust plans involve a new five or six story building on the members carpark, next door to the Rugby Australia/UTS building. It has declined to provide an assurance that it will not use the exemptions under its Act, and that any new building proposal will be subject to a formal DA/EIS process that is no less extensive and thorough than that being used by INSW for the stadium redevelopment. It’s untenable that two major construction projects will be progressed side by side under two completely different sets of rules.
Other Submissions to the Inquiry
There were 326 submissions. You can see a list of these and access them here.
The first public hearings were held on 8 June. A schedule of those appearing is here. A transcript of the proceedings is here. There will be more public hearings on 29 June.
Saving Moore Park Inc.
14 June 2018