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As usual, the following is my understanding of the meeting & all mistakes are mine.

Riverside Crescent Subcatchment Management Plan 2010 – A resident who is also a member of the Subcatchment Working Party spoke in favour of the Report. He said that it was important for Council to publicize a description of the water-cycle. He said the rainfall in Marrickville LGA is almost double than what we withdraw from Warragamba Dam & only 10% of this water is used for drinking.  If we managed the water properly, we could use less water from Warragamba Dam. He also said that many of the options involve

Recent re-vegetation work along the Marrickville side of the Cooks River

Marrickville Golf Course a significant area along the bank of the Cooks River. Large sections of the Golf Course can be re-vegetated, which will have an impact on biodiversity.  He also said that many in the community would like to see better engagement & would also like to be involved in many activities such as trees, verges, kerbs, footpaths. He said the community could be notified & could be involved in the maintenance of these areas & the way these were done has an impact on water design.

Clr Tsardoulias was pleased with the Report saying it was overdue.  Clr Olive said there had been good work on naturalization all along the river & that this will continue. Clr O’Sullivan said the Sydney Morning Herald that day had an article on environmental works done by Marrickville & Gosford Councils. She said that Council needed to be daring & the Councillors should encourage this. She mentioned recent works at Cup & Saucer Creek as an innovative model for stormwater management.  Clr Peters said it was fantastic that one of the actions was that 85% of households were receptive to using recycled water. Clr Phillips said he was keen to see the works happen & we need to make the funds available. He said he was surprised at the level of toxins in Dibble Avenue waterhole. Carried unanimously.

I will write about the Riverside Crescent Subcatchment Management Plan 2010 in the following post.

Support for Greenway connection to the Cooks River Shared Pathway – The Marrickville Cooks River Committee in their August meeting asked for Council’s assistance to make representation to Transport NSW to have the Greenway shared pathway continue on from the Lilyfield to Dulwich Hill Light Rail project to the Cooks River.  To do this the bridge over Wardell Road needs to be made suitable for cyclists by either adding a separate cycleway at the side of the bridge as an add-on or build a separate bridge altogether.

Clr Olive supported writing to the minister, as did Clr Phillips. Clr Tsardoulias said this issue was brought up 18 months ago & that it would be great to see something happening.  Carried unanimously.

In August 2010 Energy Australia held a couple of community consultations where they explained the new works they intend to do through Marrickville laying high-voltage cables. See –

The bridge over the Cooks River next to the old Sugar Factory

They intend to drill under the Cooks River at the bottom of The Warren across to Arncliffe.  This has got the community talking. Why not put a bridge across the Cooks River for the cables & make it a pedestrian bridge with the cables encased in the undercarriage of the bridge?

Personally, I think a pedestrian bridge across the river in this location is needed. I have my doubts that Energy Australia will agree to high-voltage cables above the ground because of associated risks by vandalism. However, I do believe that they would have the ability to encase this sort of high-voltage cable if they wanted to & build the bridge in a way that would protect the cables from any vandalism. The issue would be cost as I think they prefer to dig, bury & walk away.  A system of above ground cables would need to be checked on at intervals. But it could be done if they wanted to.  Point is, would they want to?

Even if Energy Australia was adverse to building a bridge or dividing the costs between Marrickville & Canterbury Councils, a pedestrian bridge should be seriously considered for this location.

The bridge over the Cooks River the connects to Ewen Park

There are 4 pedestrian bridges across the Cooks River in the Canterbury Council area & they all are heavily used by cyclists, walkers & joggers.  We have spent quite a bit of time along the Cooks River in recent weeks & I have been astounded at the people traffic across these bridges.  Everyone I have spoken to about them say they love the bridges & love the ability to do a circuit walk, run or ride.  They also love that they have access to both sides of the river.

In South Marrickville there is the Bayview Avenue bridge & the bridge across Illawarra Road. Only the Illawarra Road bridge has a pedestrian lane. A pedestrian bridge in South Marrickville below Richardsons Park would allow people to do a circuit & allow them to get to Gough Whitlam Park without using their car.

It may be seen as a luxury, but it is only copying what has happened elsewhere along the Cooks River. The bridge would encourage more walking & riding & bring a varied experience of the 2 banks. A pedestrian bridge would make this area of the Cooks River better & would improve amenity dramatically.

People have written & spoken to me about this. There is public interest. If built, the bridge will be used. It won’t be a white elephant.  I would encourage both Marrickville & Canterbury Councils to talk with Energy Australia to see if a bridge can be built in conjunction with the cable installation.  If not, the two Councils can go it alone. It would be money well spent.

If you agree, now is the time to write to our Councillors to get the discussion going. Their contact details can be found on –

Looking across the Cooks River to Mackey Park from the banks of Gough Whitlam Park



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