Aggrieved Residents Around Goodwood receive Double Dose of Aggravation

To the chagrin of aggrieved residents the Goodwood Saints Football Club this week successfully applied to have an extension of light use at Goodwood Oval for training and for night matches.

Their application was heard and unanimously approved by the Council Assessment Panel (CAP).

Goodwood Oval LightsThe CAP is a body constituted under the Development Act. It has 4 independent members and 1 elected member. It hears and makes planning decisions on behalf of Council. Council’s elected body has no involvement in this process and is not able to impact on their decisions.

Residents and others, as required under the Act, made representations to the panel. 150 of them. 77 in favour and 73 against. 9 Aggrieved Residents backed up their written representations verbally on the night.

I am proud of my neighbours. They presented well and focused on planning issues. This is important as the Panel Members must make their decisions based on Planning principles.

I am proud too of the Panel Members. Their individual explanations indicated their interpretation of planning formed their respective opinions. This even though their opinion differed from the Residents.

With the decision favouring the Club, aggrieved residents may consider lodging an appeal. The ERD Court would hear any such appeal. Anyone considering appealing have 14 days to consider this.

I say aggrieved because they (the residents) feel the club is, by way of bracket creep, eating into their use of the facility and intrusion into their amenity.

These aggrieved residents unfortunately are now catching a double dose of aggravation with a section of the media choosing to pass judgement without knowing the facts.

Two Radio stations that I am aware of have covered this storey. Unfortunately however, news is littered with half-truths, myths and prejudices. Accordingly this compounds the agony for these residents.

One station chose to run an anti-resident campaign holding themselves up as knowing the facts. The other radio station researched the storey and the facts and covered it accordingly.

The first radio station focused on the right of girls to be able to play at the same venue as their brothers. It is quite appropriate to argue that case and I support that.

Their lack of research meant they failed however to even attempt to understand what the residents’ concerns were. Accordingly they ignored concerns that included extending the grief they already experience with illegal parking and not being able to access their driveways. The Oval being restricted to 2 nights a week was conveniently ignored.  And other like issues and I do not support that.

What they did was to ignore these very important issues. I guess this may be because they did not bother to research it.

They focused on the observation of just one resident. One of 73.

The Radio Station simply argued that lights will be turned off before bed time, or covered with a blind. So what’s the problem was their focus. Never mind noise and anti-social behaviour etc even though the Club acknowledges this.

They failed to check that the Oval is already being overused, even though the Club acknowledges this.

Any extension of the use by the club not only eats into the time they (the residents) might have access, but potentially makes the Oval unfit for the remaining access time they may have.

The other station understood this and reported accurately and without opinion.

For all that, Council has a responsibility.

The issues raised in this blog are issues that Council will have to manage, along with the Club and the residents.

We will. We already are. Let’s face it, it is our responsibility. The Club has confirmed publically that it has a responsibility too. Accordingly we should be able to work with them to address the concerns of their neighbours.

Watch for future blogs to see what we are doing.

What is the best use of the Forestville Hockey Field after they leave?

Residents around the Goodwood Oval will be aware of the pending move of the Forestville Hockey Club away from the Forestville Hockey Field at Goodwood Oval. Others, not so close to the Oval, may not.

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The Club is set to move to the Women’s Memorial Playing Fields at Ayliffes Road, St Mary’s. For those not aware, they were recipients of the big spend by the previous Government during the recent State Elections.

Rather than wait for the shift from the Hockey Field to occur I believe we should start talking now about how we might use the field when they shift. Now is the time for our community to have a deep and meaningful conversation. A conversation that will allow a seamless move from the old use to the new.

Jennie moved a motion at the February Council meeting that I seconded to to allow for a public consultation to be included in next year’s budget. You don’t have to wait until then however to participate in the conversation.

Goodwood Saints LogoI say that because the Cricket Club has already communicated a desire to use the Hockey Field for junior sport. The Football Club will no doubt see a similar opportunity.

Unley United Soccer Club, who train on the Hockey Field during winter, may also see an opportunity. Tennis SA likewise may see an opportunity to extend their courts to provide deeper backdrops. Discussions I have had with them suggest otherwise but?

Hmmmmm! Any incursion by the clubs may not necessarily be a bad thing however. It may open the main oval up for the general public.

Jennie & I would love to hear from everyone who wishes to participate in the conversation from as early as now. We don’t need to wait on our administration to gear up for consultation to commence talking.

The extended use of the lighting at Goodwood Oval confuses Grandstand consultation

Hopefully a development application for the extended use of the lighting at Goodwood Oval does not hinder the Grandstand Redevelopment.

 

A development application for extended use of the lighting at Goodwood Oval has been submitted to Council. The timing of this application by the Goodwood Saints Football Club is poor. It will run concurrently with the consultation on the new Goodwood Oval Grandstand.

This is therefore not healthy, and I suggest poor timing by the Goodwood Saints.

mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM

First of all, public consultation on the Grandstand is essential to achieving good design. As a result we look to our community to contribute to the design and to take ownership of the design.

Extended use of the lighting is a totally separate project. The Development Regulations deem this as development.

It requires public notification, in this case a category 3 notification. Hence public involvement in this process is not one of contributing to the final design. It is one of representing (positively or negatively) on the suitability of a predetermined design by the applicant. Cat 3 notifications means anyone can submit a representation to the Panel.

Our Council Assessment Panel (CAP) will assess the application. The Regulations require this.

This is not just a social issue. It is an infrastructure issue. Council itself will be providing a submission to the CAP. This will focus on the Oval’s ability to handle any extra use resulting from the extended use of the lighting.

 

Clashing with the Grandstand Consultation

With the history of opposition to the extended use of the lighting, the application is surely poorly timed.

It has the potential to cause a backlash on the Goodwood Oval Grandstand design. My earlier blog expands on what we are looking to achieve together on the Grandstand. The extended use of the lighting is a what do you think about this.

Hence I implore anyone wanting to have a say to separate the two. My earlier blog focuses on the Grandstand redevelopment.

You can provide a submission on either or both. Therefore, your choice.

Seeking Your Feedback on Goodwood Oval Grandstand

Council is seeking your feedback on draft designs we have recently developed for the new Goodwood Oval Grandstand. After consultation with the footy and cricket clubs to ensure we have captured their needs, we now seek your input.

As everyone knows, we received Government funding late last year. Their contribution added to our own commitment and the contribution of the clubs and the SANFL.

This therefore means the project will proceed. That is a non-negotiable.

What we need now is to develop and refine the concept designs. To ensure the new facility fits in with the local environment we look forward to the contribution from the wider community. Seeking your feedback will assist the final design.

Discussions I have had neighbours have identified a couple of suggestions that I believe will improve the design. Both aesthetically and functionally. A question has also been raised as to the availability of function area to the community. Another whether the change rooms might be available to others who may hire the oval. I like that too.

Please contribute. Your input may prove to be just as helpful. You can help by going to our have your say website.

At the same time, we are seeking further input from the SANFL and the AFL. They have made observations that will positively impact on the size and cost of the project. Such observations as the number of toilets can be reduced and physio space likewise reduced.

Extended Use of Lighting

Hopefully a development application before council for extended use of lighting by the Goodwood Saints Football Club will not detract from helping us achieve the best design.

The lighting use has nothing to do with this consultation. Council, must under the Development Regulations, process this application. Our Council Assessment Panel will assess the application.

Please do not mix the two. We need your feedback to the grandstand design. If you have an interest in the lighting please refer to my separate bog.

 

It’s all go with the Goodwood Oval Grandstand with Council signing off.

It’s all go with the Goodwood Oval Grandstand with Council signing off on the State Government’s grant.

Council unanimously accepted the following motion on Monday night. It’s all go with the Goodwood Oval Grandstand as a result.

In my opinion this is great news for the western Unley community.

The Goodwood Oval Precinct is utilised well by the community. The Goodwood Saints Football Club and the Goodwood Roos Cricket Club are a big part of this. Both are leaders in their respective fields.

With the activity that exists, the facility deserves better than the current accommodation .

As acting presiding member in the absence of our Mayor, I was unable to move or contribute to the debate. It turned out that this was not needed. Your elected members were strong in their belief on the way forward.

For the Grandstand

The decision means that we can now move from the concept drawings we have now to detailed drawings. Council will work with the Department of Sport & Recreation and continue to work with the clubs to make to that end. Our community will be engaged as part of this process to.

The motion recommended by our administration was amended on the night to accept a 2-storey solution. Members were of a similar view to the clubs as to which model best suited, not only the clubs needs, but the community at large.

For Tennis Lighting and Millswood Croquet

While it’s all go with the Goodwood Oval Grandstand, the motion also endorses both of these projects.

The focus is to secure additional outside funding for both. This is needed as we have redirected the funding we allocated for these projects to the Grandstand to secure the State Government Grant.

To secure outside funding more work will be needed on the concept designs to ensure it is fit for purpose and affordable.

More than just a new Grandstand

The recent announcement in the fight for the seat of Badcoe of a $ 2.5 million State Government grant to Council is about more than just a new Grandstand. It is much more.

Locals are aware of the push by the candidates of both the major parties’ candidates for a new Grandstand at Goodwood Oval. From a Council perspective it is about much more than just a new Grandstand.

Tennis World (Goodwood Oval) Millswood

As evidenced by many posts on this blog site, Council has been working on a master plan for the Goodwood/Millswood Precinct for some time. Since that initial public consultation, we have had extensive consultations with the clubs.

Balancing the needs of clubs on both sides of the Seaford Rail Line has been a challenge. We recently determined the priorities from the many opportunities identified for the precinct.

Millswood Croquet Club

Before talking Goodwood Oval, we have identified a priority need to provide a new club room for the Millswood Croquet Club. Readers of this blog may remember me publically expressing previously the opinion that the current club room is a death trap. So, a new club room (some 245 m2 compared to the current 145 m2) is proposed.

Funding for the projects will now have to be re-sourced. We allocated $ 1.2 m for all works in the precinct. Allocating $ 1.0 m of this to the grandstand will leave a hole in the funding bucket.

Even for Goodwood Oval it is more than just a new Grandstand. Three projects have been identified for Goodwood Oval. Outside the Grandstand we also have identified the need to:

  • Upgrade the Tennis SA court lighting. This project is designed to prevent light spillage from the tennis courts to surrounding houses and the streets.
  • Provide a community area complete with access pathways in the north-western corner of the Oval surrounds. This should encourage more people to use this part of the precinct.

All the options, more than just a new grandstand, will be considered at our next Council meeting, tomorrow night.

 

Battle for Badcoe focuses on the Goodwood Oval Grandstand

Recent media headlines have identified that the Battle for Badcoe focuses on the Goodwood Oval Grandstand.

Goodwood Oval Grandstand

I am pleased that both the Labor (Jayne Stinson) and the Liberal (Lachlan Clyne) candidates are focused on the Goodwood Oval Grandstand. For someone acutely aware of the state of the current grandstand facility this is heartwarming.

Some of the credit/blame for Jayne’s focus is probably due to me. I canvassed among other things redevelopment of the Goodwood Oval Grandstand when I first met her. This was a week or so after her candidature was announced earlier this year. I then followed up by introducing her to the Presidents of the resident football and cricket clubs. She has taken this prompting seriously, conducting her own survey.

Lachlan Clyne, as Mayor of Unley, is of course only too aware of the state of the Grandstand. He is also aware, up until recently, of what work Council has put into determining a way forward.

Trouble is the candidates have been so keen they have been replicating what council has already done.

They have both been conducting their own public surveys. Surveys designed to see how the locals feel about replacing the current grandstand with new club rooms. Surveys on one option only.

Millswood Croquet Club rooms

Council did this as the first stage of our master planning for the Goodwood Oval and Millswood Reserve some 4 years ago. This has allowed us to identify the priority projects and consider options. Something the candidates are not doing.

There have also been reports that they are publically asking Council how much we would be prepared to contribute to the redevelopment. Hang On Guys! This and Millswood is a Council owned facility.

As the Battle for Badcoe focuses on the Goodwood Oval Grandstand we ask the candidates how much their parties are prepared to contribute to this and the other three projects.

We will shortly, hopefully at the November Council meeting, have options available to consider. Options that have been costed for all three projects to come out of the Master Plan. That includes the Grandstand, the tennis lighting and the Croquet club rooms.

From memory we have committed around  $1.0 m in our long term financial plan. We await on how much the future State Government is prepared to contribute to our project.

 

The Good Wood on Goodwood Oval Grandstand

After laying dormant for close to 2 years the good wood on the Goodwood Oval Improvement Plan is it is now back on the drawing boards. Well the grandstand is.

Goodwood Oval Grandstand

Goodwood Oval Grandstand

Back in 2014 we developed an improvement plan for the Goodwood Oval and Millswood Sporting Complex. The combined plan hit a snag however as we tried to resolve a conflict over use of green space at Millswood.

While we have been trying to resolve this the Football and Cricket Clubs at Goodwood Oval, along with the Goodwood Tennis Club, have been the forgotten players.

Both clubs have advised me that they require urgent works to resolve health and amenity concerns in the wet areas of the grandstand. This includes the shower facilities and their inappropriateness for females and the male club toilets (which have no ventilation). It includes the kitchen areas. They also are sadly lacking in storage space.

Mindful that supporting some works needs are urgent enough to be included in next year’s annual budget I have put a motion to Council. After considered and eloquent representations by both clubs in support of my motion it was unanimously supported I am proud to say by council.

My motion was:

That:

  1. Administration commences development of concept plans for improvements to the Goodwood Oval and the grandstand facility.
  2. The concept plans review include accommodating female participation for both cricket and football, for players and umpiring alike.
  3. The resulting concept drawing be developed in consultation with the Goodwood Cricket Club and the Goodwood Saints Football Club.
  4. Administration identifies funding sources as part of the second quarter budget review.
  5. The concept plans be presented to Council at the March 2017 Council meeting prior to any community engagement.

The motion aims to ensure we have an improvement plan that is up to date and accurately represents the needs of the future. We need to do this to ensure any early works we may contemplate complement and do not contradict the plan.

We need first to update the improvement plan to recognise the emerging female participation in both sports.

The good wood on Goodwood Oval is that subsequent approval of the updated plan provides us two opportunities:

  • To schedule some works considered urgent and important in next year’s budget.
  • To have a shovel ready project that could qualify for State Government grant funding. With the State Election looming in 2018 we have a great chance to lobby both major parties.

Update on Goodwood Oval Port Jackson Fig Tree

This blog is an update for all who are interested in the Goodwood Oval Port Jackson Fig Tree.

 

This updates my previous blogs from December last year and earlier this month.

Goodwood Oval Port Jackson Fig TreeThis morning I had further discussions with our Arborist and our Sustainable Landscape Specialist. We discussed both long term and short term actions. We need to not only protect the tree which has at least another 20 years life left in it but ensure reasonably the safety of the public (you and me).

Of immediate need is to provide better protection for the public. Our staff pre-empted a request by me to change the barrier to a mesh barrier rather than the single strand barrier currently in position. I have asked also that we sign post the area as an added dissuasion to public accessing the area beneath the crown of the tree. Expect this within the next week.

A long term solution could be as far away as at least August. We need to determine what risks remain with various options that may be considered. Restricting or maybe even preventing access under the Port Jackson is being debated as we speak.

It is likely, as I reported previously, that the benches and Bar B Que will need to be relocated elsewhere in the Oval precinct. Finding a suitable shaded spot may prove a challenge however so whatever we wind up proposing will probably need to have artificial  shade included. As Goodwood Oval is community land a public consultation will become part of the process.

This as always will be time consuming.

It is currently unfunded but I will be ensuring that we include a satisfactory budget during our current budget considerations for next year in readiness for a decision after consultation.

The Goodwood Oval Port Jackson Fig Tree is a much loved tree and very much part of the amenity of the Oval precinct.

 

Mixed Message for our Moreton Bay Fig

Late last year I blogged on the limb failure of the Moreton Bay Fig tree (or should I say Port Jackson Fig) located in the north west quadrant of Goodwood Oval. This blog is the latest on what we have found about the trees health and its future.

 

Goodwood Oval Morton Bay Fig Tree

Goodwood Oval Morton Bay Fig Tree

I visited the site with Council’s arborist this morning and he confirms the original assessments as it being in good health. It’s health in fact is typical of the species and its age. He and the independent arborist that carried out specific tests on the tree I reported in my last blog both conclude that we do have some management issues going forward to protect this lovely tree.

The Port Jackson (as we should get used to calling it) is a significant tree. So much so it is included in Council’s Development Plan Significant Tree Register. This provides it some pretty basic protections.

The specialised inspection has revealed that while in good general health it has been compromised. Foliage colour, size and density are all normal and there are no signs of pests or disease within the crown.

The limb failure has been diagnosed as the result of fungal degeneration and there is more present. These failures have resulted in a large void and altered wind dynamic. The trees overall integrity is not compromised but it has been assessed as there being a moderate risk of further limb failure particularly before regrowth stabilises the tree long term. I have had the regrowth pointed out to me.

Thankfully the risk has not been diagnosed as high as this would probably see a recommendation for its removal. Having said that a medium risk is sufficient for us to take action to minimise risk to all those who use Goodwood Oval and in particular the kids who climb the tree.

Pruning options are limited so we are likely to consider repositioning the permanent seats and the bar b que to another area. This will challenge us as any repositioning of this facility will require shade. Our arborist and I discussed some options but we will need to give this some more thought before going out for your thoughts and opinions.