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Stadium Stoush

YOUR article ("Redfern Park to Benefit Entire Community," March 5, 2008) overlooks a few important issues writes Paul Dorron in this letter to Central of 12 March 2008.

In fact, the stadium at Redfern Park does not benefit the entire community, just a small part of it.

A large number of local residents signed a petition opposing the development, and a strong argument that the oval should be returned to passive open park space was rejected, largely under the influence and lobbying of vested interest groups who have a commercial interest in the site.

Open space in the Redfern-Waterloo area is only 5.9 sq m per person, against a city average of 6.6 sq m, and significantly less than that recommended by the EPA of 28.3 sq m per person:

Previous management of the park included a long-term lease to Souths at $1 per year, which excluded large sections of the local community from accessing the space.

Most of the users of the oval during this time actually came from suburbs outside of Redfern and Waterloo.

One of the considered options, thankfully rejected by council, was to provide underground parking for 1000 cars, seating for 20,000 and the commercial development and leasing of the park.

Current intentions are for the "park development" to funded by ratepayers, fenced to keep residents out, and made available to the Rabbitohs on a lease of up to 20 years, without a public tender being held. Many residents, myself included, consider this art inappropriate use of a publicly owned park and taxpayers' money.

- PAUL DORRON, RedfernSource: Central of 12 March 2008