You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘May Lane St Peters’ tag.

Local mob

This was the Land Use, Assets & Corporate Committee Meeting. Absent: Clrs Wright & Kontellis. The following was how I understood the meeting. All mistakes are mine.

Traffic island – Creation of a 7-metre x 1.2 metre traffic island.  I did not hear the street that Councillors discussed. The papers mention two – one in Cannon Street Stanmore & one in Trade Street Newtown.  I have not sought to clarify the location as I think the issue is that Council generally elects not to landscape traffic islands.

Clr Olive: It would be nicer to have some plants in the island. Staff: This one is 330mm each leaving only 150 mm for planting. We don’t tend to landscape median islands for occupational health & safety concerns for staff.

Clr Marci: Won’t plants impede driver’s vision?  Staff: No. We can plant appropriate plants.  Clr Thanos: We need to consider staff & occupational health & safety. It would be a maintenance nightmare for the future.  Clr O’Sullivan: We need a hierarchy of street plant beautification. I want to see better planting, but we need to be sensible. We need a systematic approach & consider biodiversity. We need to consider traffic island models like Stanmore.

Clr Hanna: Too many safety risks for staff. Clr Olive: I find it extraordinary & while I take on staff’s thoughts, we are talking about a quiet suburban street. This is quite reasonable in cost & beauty. Bricks also cost money.

For: Clrs Olive, Phillips, Peters & Mayor Byrne.  Against:  Clrs Hanna, Macri, Tsardoulias, O’Sullivan, Iskandar & Thanos.  The median strips will be built without plantings.

Redirection of unspent funds from the Greenway Battle Bridge Project – Option 1: $51,000 to be absorbed into general revenue.

Option 2: $51,000 given to the proposed place-based road reserve project (verge project).

Clr Olive: While I support the move, I think there is a greater amount needed on this project. Clr O’Sullivan: I am in favour of the $51,000 going into general revenue. There are many projects that have priorities.  Mayor Byrne: We have a tight budget. We are talking about addressing the issue of verge mowing. We need to start looking at other treatments for our verges & give people options.  We have been discussing this for the past 2.5 years. If the $51,000 goes into this project it frees up other money for where it is needed.

Clr Peters: I support the Mayor. By employing someone to help with a changed verge management we will eventually save money in the long-term. Clr Tsardoulias: I support Clr O’Sullivan. We deferred last year for a report on verges so we should wait until we get the report.

Staff: The requirement was for Council to consult with the community about alternative verge work, therefore the $51,000 will be used for this. Clr Phillips:  Supported using the money to start on verge management now. Clr Thanos:  I support this. We are spending over $2,000,000 per year on mowing verges.  We need to look at other surfaces as well as beautifying the area. I urge Councillors to view the report with an open mind because we will save money. Carried. The vote was unanimous.

Renaming May Lane St Peters – May Lane West will now be called Caroline Lane in an attempt to prevent street art going along the length of the current May Lane.   The name change will now go to public consultation.  Carried – unanimous.

Street art in May Lane St Peters

This was the Services Committee Meeting. Absent – Clrs Thanos & Wright. The following is how I understood the meeting & any mistakes are mine.

Street art & graffiti in May Lane & surrounding areas St Peters – Background: After 3 community consultations, Council has a 16-point plan to address street art & graffiti in May Lane & surrounding areas. They include cleaning up May Lane West, renaming this section, increasing the number of rubbish bins, increasing lighting & garbage removal, converting May Lane into a shared zone & setting up regular community forums.

A resident spoke for the street art saying she has seen positive aspects & was happy with Council’s process. She said May Lane was already a shared space, but cars regularly drive the wrong way, especially the weekly garbage truck.  She said this was dangerous due to the many pedestrians. She said she had made a documentary on May Lane that is travelling Australia.  The next speaker was from Graphic Art Mount who said the project began in 2005 with young people approaching them to ask if they could paint their walls. They now get applications to paint from overseas.   She said May Lane showcases street artists & provides a platform for current street art practice. She said Bathurst Regional Gallery is taking street art on a 2-year national tour. She said she was concerned that Council wanted to clean up May Lane East as the business was having art tours to look at the walls & that a lot of the street artists were becoming well known. She also said the business had invested $35,000 per year into the project.

The next speaker spoke for the street art & said he was a senior lecturer on Urban Geography at Sydney University who researches graffiti management policy around the world. He commended Council on their process saying that graffiti management is usually based on prejudice, rather than evidence & that Marrickville Council was a role model for other councils.  He said street art contributes to the community & generates international tourism. He said there would be a “massive amount of goodwill” from the street artists if they were included in any consultation & that senior street artists teach ethics to new younger artists. He said cleaning the walls could send a mixed message that street artists are not welcome.

2 residents spoke against the street art. The first said she supported street art & had seen it get kids off the streets & that the behaviour of the street artists & not the art was the issue for her. She said she gets a lot of aggression directed toward her & that she had recently seen a woman with kids in the car have the 4 doors kicked in by pedestrians in May Lane. She said the lane was an “accident waiting to happen” with photographers blocking the lane, pedestrians & traffic. She said May Lane is now a street art lane & Council won’t be able to recover it.  She said Council should look after May Lane instead of the art shop paying $35,000 a year & that Council should provide more areas for street art. She said Council hadn’t thought May Lane through, had allowed it to go on for 6 years & sponsors websites that show tags. She said the shop 567 King Street that sells spray paint & ‘tag ‘n run’ texta’s should come under control.

May Lane St Peters

The next resident said she was also a senior lecturer at Sydney University. She said Council hadn’t addressed the demarcation between residents & artists & reminded that the work was done on the back of residential properties.  She said a lot of people (20-50 at a time) using spray cans causes a fine drift of paint and fumes & residents were complaining of asthma & headaches. The dumping of rubbish, alcohol use & aggression towards residents were also an issue. She said most people think it is legal to graffiti walls & the street artists were encroaching on the residents clean air & the kind of place they live.  She said she has a Phd in Public Health & just because we can’t find evidence that breathing spray paint causes harm, doesn’t mean it doesn’t. She said she would like to see May Lane West cleaned & renamed Harriet Lane so that the painting becomes concentrated in May Lane East. She also said Councillors encouraging street art can encourage ‘vandalism tourism.’

May Lane St Peters

Clr O’Sullivan said that local police say boys from North Shore private schools are coming to St Peters to engage in illegal activity that they wouldn’t do in their own area. Council is trying to reconcile gallery & street artists & the distress of residents by the success of this gallery.  She said residents feel unsafe at time after dark with people doing something at their back gate. She said this is not the gallery’s project & that Marrickville Council set it up & manages it. She put up a motion that Council audit the websites they sponsor to ensure they don’t recommend tagging, that during the clean up the walls on May Lane West are not erased & that the cleanup include Appleby Street.

Clr Peters asked whether some artistic lighting could be used instead of ordinary lighting. Staff said community safety was the issue, but they would look at lighting options as part of the environmental assessment.   Clr Hanna said he was happy Council was looking into this problem & wanted the cleanup to be done as soon as possible, not wait until next year.

Clr Phillips put up an amendment regarding renaming May Lane West, Harriet Lane to look at using an Aboriginal name instead & wanted consultation with the Aboriginal community about choosing a name.  Staff said Harriet was the name of one of the daughters of the owner of the brick pits & that the names of other daughters have been used. He said consultation with the Aboriginal community has shown a spilt as to whether Cadigal names can be used.   Clr Phillips said he thought the Aboriginal Consultative Committee should decide whether they have a suitable name.

Clr Olive supported using an Aboriginal name, but said it had been 2 years & no names had been put forward yet & Council needed to get this process through.  He said a key part of the strategy was changing the name of May Lane West immediately.  Clr Byrne supported motion & said Council needs a long-term strategy with forums & a working party with residents involved.  Clr Hanna said he was against the amendment because it would delay the process, not because it would be an Aboriginal name.

Clr Peters said that the Aboriginal Consultative Committee meets this December & should be given the opportunity.  Clr O’Sullivan said she opposed the amendment even though she was a member of the Aboriginal Consultative Committee saying it was unfair to give them an urgent matter at their AGM. Clr Kontellis supported the motion saying the Aboriginal Consultative Committee can come up with a name & if they don’t, Council can revert back to Harriet.  Amendment to rename – Carried. (I only managed to get the following names) For: Clrs Kontellis, Phillips, Byrne & Peters. Against: Clrs Olive, O’Sullivan & Hanna. Clr Kontellis using her casting vote. I don’t know which way Clrs Iskandar & Tsardoulias voted.  Clr O’Sullivan’s motion was carried unanimously.

Here ends the Report for this week.

A selection of street art in May Lane St Peters



© Copyright

Using and copying text and photographs is not permitted without my permission.

Blog Stats

  • 707,933 hits
%d bloggers like this: