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RWA Answers Questions from Human Services Forum

Below are answers from the RWA to Questions raised at the human Services Forum on 10 May 2010. Questions asked include: Lack of Primary School places in the region; Role of the concierges; What is happening with the Rachel Forster Building?; Lack of nearby good shopping centre; Inadequate bus services and the Upgrade of Redfern Station.

Lack of Primary School places in the region.

The Department of Education and Training undertook a review of primary schooling capacity in the Redfern Waterloo area in early 2008, with particular reference to the North Eveleigh development.

The DET advised that children are entitled to be enrolled at their local primary school based on their residential address. The North Eveleigh development will be local to Darlington Public School.

Under the Built Environment Plan, the North Eveleigh Concept Plan provides for approximately 1,250 medium density dwellings. The trigger for the establishment of a new primary school is 2,500 additional dwellings.

The DET review concluded Darlington Primary School is at permanent enrolment capacity, and Newtown and Erskineville schools are near permanent capacity.

Permanent enrolment capacity means that it can accommodate local students without the need to include temporary demountable buildings.

The DET and the Department of Planning will monitor the impact of the North Eveleigh development on primary school demand.

Role of the concierges

The Waterloo Green Neighbourhood Project is being introduced for people living in the Waterloo Green high rises.

The Project will provide three new services:

  • Neighbourhood Link - a service delivered from the foyer of each high rise providing information about social services and community activities and a contact/control point for visitors and contractors wishing to enter the building.
  • Neighbourhood Security - a security service outside business hours with 24 hour CCTV monitoring
  • Neighbourhood repairs – provision of routine maintenance by social housing tenants in partnership with the head maintenance contractor for the area.

It is anticipated that the services will commence in Matavai and Turunga in August 2010, Marton and Solander in October 2010 and Cook and Banks in December 2010.

What is happening with the Rachel Forster Building?

This site has been sold for a residential development of 159 dwellings. The developer prepared the Environmental Assessment (EA) for the site and this was lodged with the Department of Planning for Test of Adequacy on 5 March this year and was found to be inadequate on 17 March 2010.

The Department of Planning has since written to the applicant advising them of the additional information required for the EA and the Department have advised that the applicant is currently obtaining this information.

Lack of nearby good shopping centre

A new supermarket will be included as part of the redevelopment of the South Sydney Leagues Club in Chalmers St Redfern and another supermarket is being proposed for the redevelopment of 729 Gibbons St (adjacent the Redfern RSL site).

The RWA and the City of Sydney are currently actively involved in developing strategies to encourage business development and the opening of new shops in the area particularly in Redfern and Regent Streets.

Inadequate bus services

A Transport Working Group was established by the former Ministry for Transport to look transport issues in the Redfern and Waterloo area. This group had representation from South Sydney Community Transport, DADHC, NSW Taxi Council, State Transit Authority, Railcorp, City of Sydney, Redfern Police, Sydney South West Area Health Service, Wyanga Aboriginal Aged Care, Alexandria Park Community School, and the Ministry for Transport and the RWA.

The group looked at a number of issues raised by the community and undertook a community survey in relation to transport needs.

Generally the results of the survey indicated that of the relatively small group surveyed most people had good access to all forms of transport in the area including, walking, train, STA buses, Community Transport services and taxis.

Information regarding people’s most common transport routes involving STA bus travel and general comments indicated:

  • that people would like a free service,
  • an increased number of services, and
  • direct routes to local hospitals.
  • comments were also made regarding access to Redfern Station and the need for a bus interchange at Redfern Station, without crossing busy roads.
  • one respondent commented that services need to be earlier to Ian Thorpe Pool to coincide with exercise classes.

These comments were referred to the STA representative for consideration.

If more specific information regarding the bus services can be provided then this can also be forwarded to the Transport Feedback line for consideration in future reviews.

Upgrade of Redfern Station

Railcorp are currently investigating the options for the upgrade of Redfern Station.