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Sartor takes Planning Control of Redfern’s Block

This was the first of two REDWatch media statements issued when the RWA State Significance boundaries were released.


Sartor takes Planning Control of Redfern’s Block

A map of Redfern Waterloo has been published in the Government Gazette which shows the initial areas declared as state significant within the RWA boundaries. The map includes private land as well as the publicly owned land which were to pass to the RWA under the provisions of the Redfern Waterloo Act. A copy of the map is attached.

Spokesperson for REDWatch Geoffrey Turnbull said “The declaration of The Block within the gazetted area of state significance of the RWA will put the future of the Aboriginal Housing Company’s Pemulwuy project under the planning control of its major opponent. Minister Sartor has made plain his opposition to the proposed 62 house project on The Aboriginal owned Block”. “The City of Sydney Council will no longer have planning control over the Pemulwuy project”

“Frank Sartor and this Labor Government this day have done the greens a favour, Sussex St should not bother running a candidate in this area for quite some time” said Trevor Davies a REDWatch member and a local ALP Secretary. “I am today ashamed to be a member of the ALP” Mr Davies said.

“This will certainly lead to some heated debate at State Labor Conference on the June long weekend”. Mr Turnbull said.

“This move stands to further inflame the relationship between the Minister and the community over the future of the Pemulwuy project and The Block” Mr Turnbull said “I think this announcement has guaranteed a successful turnout for a Reconciliation Bridge Walk and Candle Light vigil in support of Aboriginal Housing on the Block on June 9th” Mr Turnbull said.

Mr Turnbull called for Premier Carr to visit the block and “see the Pemulwuy project plans first hand rather than rely on second hand accounts”.

On the broader area Mr Turnbull said “The RWA was set up to put together a Plan for Redfern Waterloo and yet we have decisions about the areas to be declared state significant being made without the plan being formulated or even the Ministers advisory committees being established.”

“The RWA seems to be in a big hurry to do everything but consult the local people about what they want”. Mr Turnbull said

One part of private land includes the north easterly end of Lawson Street apparently up to and including the proposed Lawson Street Health / Needle Centre and then North to Louis, West along Vine Street to Abercrombie Street then north to Cleveland Street and then properties on the western side of the railway line back to Lawson Street.

The second area of private land is effectively bordered by Lawson Square, Regent Street, Margaret Street and Gibbons Street and takes in the old TNT towers and the area expected to abut any development of Redfern Railway station.

Public Lands covered in the schedule include, Redfern Public School, Rachael Foster, the Old Redfern police Station and Court in addition to the ATP, Railway corridor and North Eveleigh. The gazetted area does not include the Public Housing estates within the RWA borders which REDWatch believes will be left until a later stage of the RWA’s Plan.

The identification of the RWA areas in this form follows the reforms to NSW Planning System announced on May 12th. A special Supplement of the Government Gazette (number 60) has been issued entitled the State Environment Planning Policy (State Significant Development) 2005 under the EPA Act 1979. This SEPP can be downloaded from Special Supplement No 60 of 25 May 2005.

To understand the full impact of the SEPP we also will need to know whether there will be changes to the state significant development provisions in the Environment Planning & Assessment Act and if so what they will be.

For Further Information contact:
Geoffrey Turnbull                                    or                     Trevor Davies               
REDWatch Spokesperson                                              Ph: 04 0000 8338
Ph Wk: (02) 9318 0824                                                      

REDWatch is a residents and friends group covering Redfern Eveleigh Darlington and Waterloo (the same area covered by the Redfern Waterloo Authority). REDWatch monitors the activities of government activities such as the RWA and RWPP and seek to ensure community involvement in all decisions made about the area.

5th May 2005