Black Forest Public Art Consultation

As I have indicated to most people over the weekend who received a letter last week from Council that the content in the letter was not as I, nor our CEO had expected.

In error we informed we would be doing the proposed art rather than seeking your input into the design and locations. 

As my blog title indicates I am here to represent you and advocate for you, which is exactly what I have done to right the confusion that the letter has created. I have spoken with our CEO and he has re-affirmed that we will be listening to what you, my neighbours, have to say.
He promised me on Saturday to prepare a letter apologizing for the confusion and seeking to clarify what we are seeking with you to achieve. I expect a letter may be mailed out tomorrow so watch your letter boxes.
Indeed, if I understand correctly, he has already received enough feedback on the Canterbury Terrace regrowth tree sculpture to meet his promise not to proceed with it if this is what you want. Not sure if has received many yet on the Cowper Road art.
Depending on what might come in on Cowper I believe we will likely formally seek input in November after the end of the caretaker mode caused by the elections. Seems the original letter should not have gone out under the caretaker provisions as our administration are not permitted to conduct a public consultation during this period.
Really. Conducting my business, even with all the red tape I am exposed to pales when compared to the red tape council has to endure. It (the red tape) is one of the contributing factors behind some of the mistakes we (as an organisation) make from time to time.
Watch out for his letter for confirmation of what he is offering.

Railworks Revegetation to Commence

The railways projects that have dogged Goodwood South for 18 months take their final works with the re-vegetation to be carried out by Council.

Cromer Parade and Arundel Avenue are the focus in our ward and Forestville Reserve will be the focus of our northern neighbours. Letters to Cromer Parade residents were posted yesterday and Arundel Avenue residents today advising of content and timing schedules.

It will be great to see this happening.

DPTI will be funding Arundel Avenue, and the northern end of Cromer Parade and Council has included the southern end of Cromer Parade in its 2014-15 annual business plan and budget.

Of course when I say final works there remains a number of things DPTI need to do which we have left in the capable hands of your State Local member Steph Key.

Much better than those Purple Dots

During a walk along the line yesterday with Jennie and Steph Key we noticed a great improvement to those throw screens at the Goodwood Junction.

The pictures, depicting the local architectural history, shown here were donated by local resident Molly Birch, and no doubt they have improved her outlook. Well done all involved. I reckon this is great.

And when the mural painting occurs later this year of the 4 sides of the Tram Overpass this area will have received a much needed face lift.

Now what we need is those purple dots to disappear.

Rail Revitalisation Not Complete

For those of you who are aware of inconsistencies in the rail corridor work and also that it is not complete Jennie & I “walked the line” yesterday with local state MP Steph Key.

Steph seemed in good spirits and relaxed and looking forward to serving you for the net three years. She was also very receptive to recognising that much is yet to be done before the project can be deemed complete.

Those of you (and there are many) who have indicated their disgust at those purple dots spattered around the junction rest assured. Your local MP agrees with you.

We identified many issues that need attention, including graffiti removal within the corridor, removal of supplied structure materials that have no apparent use, cementing in a light pole at Emerson Road (yes it is loose in a hole with two sand bags propping it up), removing a loose piece of fencing material used to bridge between a new fence and the adjoining neighbours fence and likewise barbed wire at the end of Parker Terrace.

 It includes determining if the gates that used to be provided at the Clarence Park Rail Station are to be returned to what DPTI have promoted is a less safe environment now; and why the ARC fencing used at Emerson and the Cyclone mesh fencing at Clarence Park have not been replaced with the new tubular fencing surrounding them.

Redesigning fences at both Emerson Avenue and Cranbrook/Arundel Avenue to improve site lines was also identified. Whilst on fences we identified as any of you are aware the corrugated iron along the bike path between Cromer Parade and Victoria Street is missing a number of screws and there are a number of joins in those sheets that are opening up and pulling free.

The same can be said for that expensive lattice screen along Arundel Avenue, which of course no longer is sighted by the turn out bay.

The overlapping of the corrugated sheets also will encourage early corrosion of the metal as they allow entry of water into the joints.

The list is too long to recreate here.

Suffice it to say, we had a willing ear from Steph, who believes the new Minister for Transport will be receptive.

PS        By the way. New graffiti, the responsibility of council (yes we get the ongoing maintenance of the new greenways), along the bike track has already been removed by council. Hopefully DPTI will acknowledge their commitment to remove that which has been there for an eternity on the corridor, noting they will allow no-one else access the area to do it for them.

Electric Trains A Plus

This afternoon I decided I needed to take a break and turn off for a while and this gave me an opportunity to unexpectedly experience the new 4000 electric train.

I felt an afternoon at Adelaide Oval was in order watching the Victorians crawl toward a draw after South Australia had them on the ropes. Of course I was not there 10 minutes and I ran into a resident from Fairfax Street Millswood and also residents from Cowper Road Black Forest.

This worked a treat once I found my own seat because such nail biting activity on the part of the Vics helped me simply drift away from all the activity that has recently consume me.

What I did not realize was I would find my first venture to Clarence Park Railway Station I would catch the new 4000 electric train.

It was a smooth and quite ride and I enjoyed it. The aisles were quite wide making it much easier to get from one end of the train to the other. This should prove beneficial.

The only downside was I felt the seats could have been wider than they are and the width of the aisle would suggest it may have been possible. I feel they are the same width as the trams.

All in all I give it a big tick.

And I reckon the train full of passengers checking it out would agree with me. The biggest number of passengers I have ever seen on a Sunday.

Wayville Station controversy prompts a deeper question

As the newly opened Wayville railway Station (actually named the Showgrounds Railway Station) is heralded a huge success by the State Government it has raised a number of eyebrows as an expensive and unnecessary addition to the State’s infrastructure.

The debate which arose before it was constructed has flared again, only a week after it was opened. And the headlines read ” The Phantom Passengers of Wayville Station”. This is clearly a dig at the fact that very few passengers are suing this brand new state of the art station.

I refer to an article by Sheradyn Holderhead in today’s Sunday Mail.

As I ventured by train into the Adelaide Oval to take in some Sheffield Shield cricket (unfortunately the game ended in a draw be we (SA) are still sitting atop the ladder) I could not help but notice not one passenger at this station.

Is this a big waste of taxpayers money by the current State Government is the question being asked. If I may I suggest the question should actually be should infrastructure precede housing or commercial development or follow it.

This Government has been oft criticised for not providing infrastructure before housing developments are allowed to proceed. Now they are being criticised for putting it on ahead of time. In my opinion infrastructure should come first so I applaud the Government for taking the opportunity when it presented itself.

With a Development Plan encouraging sometime in the future (not sure when) a significant and dense residential population between the Showground and Greenhill Road, perhaps it is timely.

I guess only time will tell if the expenditure on this project was justified or not.

On the other hand the rumour is the Government and the Showgrounds are in discussions with each other over an opportunity to create a Park & Ride on the north side of the Showgrounds. This of course will undoubtedly provide a degree of patronage to help justify the construction of the Station.

Indeed the Premier recently announced Wayville as part of a wider Park & Ride program costing $ 7.5 million, which he says will be funded from the proposed car park tax.

All the experts agree that the various north-south roads situated in the City of Unley are already overtaxed with peak hour traffic. And now the Government says it will encourage increased traffic into this area in order to service the otherwise Phantom Station.

So while I am in favour of infrastructure before housing or commercial development I am dead against a park & ride in an inner suburban location.

Please Mr Premier, do not screw up the western suburbs of the City of Unley. We need you or the opposition if they form the next Government to actually do the opposite and ease the commuter pressure on this inner suburban area.

Showground Station Opened

This morning I took the opportunity to preview the new rail station at Wayville, called the Showground Station prior to it’s being opened.

Heavy rain did not dampen my inspection and I have to say I am impressed. We could well do with replicating this elsewhere, not the size necessarily but the style and the amenity.
I can now catch the train to the various events at the showground. Woo Hoo!
Check out the photos

Rail Electrification Update

For those of you who are not on the DPTI mailing list for updates on the rail electrification project you might find the current update of interest.

You can access it at the link below

Rail Electrification Community Update

And stay tuned for an announcement from the Minister re the start of passenger services for the Electric Trains (The 4000 series)

Electric trains…coming soon but watch out for Suburban black outs when they do

The Good. A short while ago we (my wife & I) happened by chance to witness the trialing along our stretch of the line the new electric trains.
The Bad. Our neighbourhood suffered a black out at the precise moment it went past.

It is great news that the electric trains are being trialed along the full length of the Seaford Line. It means they can’t be too far away from carrying passengers. This adds to the news that the Wayville Station will be open on the 17th, maybe a precursor to the electric trains commencing even though there is no word on this yet.

As I said we happened on this event. The trains ARE so silent you don’t know they are coming. It was a fluke in other words I got to see them.

I did manage to get footage of one passing our door.

But my wife and neighbours were worried about a black out we experienced at precisely the time the train passed our door. Co-incidence or a fault that impacts on the power grid. I hope it is the former because (if not) there is going to be further outrage.