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City of Canada Bay ramps up the fight to save the Drummoyne Reservoir

08 May 2018 | Community

City of Canada Bay Mayor Angelo Tsirekas has today slammed the NSW State Government for refusing Council’s offer to take over the stewardship of Sydney’s iconic Drummoyne Reservoir following Sydney Water’s decision to move forward with plans to sell off the site on the open market.

“The City of Canada Bay’s plan to hand over this iconic site to the public stands in direct opposition to the State Government’s plan to sell it off on the open market,” Mayor Tsirekas said.

“Sydney Water's plan could lead to a number of undesirable consequences including the potential for the heritage reservoir to be demolished and in the worst case scenario, replaced by high density residential development.”

“Ironically, Sydney Water’s plan stands in direct opposition to Premier Berejiklian’s recently announced ‘open spaces’ plan for which the State Government has set aside $120 million to identify and buy land for public use green space.”

Announcing her plan last month, Premier Berejiklian said that Sydney’s residents “want the open space, they want to know that they've got something they can preferably walk to, to have that wonderful local experience.”

"We are looking at every single suburb across greater Sydney — wherever there's an opportunity for us to acquire a piece of land," Premier Berejiklian said on 9 April.

The City of Canada Bay proposes that Sydney Water restore and decontaminate the Reservoir site, recognising their legacy obligation as owner of a piece of significant public infrastructure, and then dedicate it to Council to be used for public recreation and suitable adaptive reuse of the heritage structure.

“Here we have the possibility to save our heritage listed Reservoir and create new, open space for the people of Sydney with no need to dig into the NSW taxpayer’s pockets for a land purchase.”

“Clearly Premier Berejiklian would rather waste taxpayer’s money on new stadiums than work with Local Government to secure open space for Sydney’s residents.”

Despite claims from the NSW State Government to the contrary, the City of Canada Bay has never been presented with a figure for the sale of the Drummoyne Reservoir site by Sydney Water.

The announcement of the site’s sale was met with widespread community backlash. Following the announcement by Sydney Water over 350 residents and local businesses signed a petition urging Sydney Water to bestow the site to the City of Canada Bay Council and to provide sufficient funding to restore and remediate the Drummoyne Reservoir and Tower, on the basis that Sydney Water has a legacy obligation in respect of this historic site.

In 2011, following requests from Drummoyne Public School and extensive community consultation, the City of Canada Bay permanently closed South St in Drummoyne for use as additional playground space for Drummoyne Public School and St Marks Primary School and also as adaptive public green space.

“I hold out hope that the State Government will follow the lead we set with South St; that they listen to the community and come to their senses on this issue,” Mr Tsirekas said.

“Once that happens and Sydney Water undertakes the necessary restoration and decontamination works on the site, this iconic space can be dedicated to Council and we can get to work handing it back to the public.”

Click here for more information and to sign the petition.

 

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Page last updated on: 08/05/18
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