Response by Greens Councillor Murray Matson to “inconsistent” heavy rail position taken by Randwick Labor Councillors and Liberal Councillor Robert Belleli – December 6th 2013

Are Randwick’s Labor Councillors and Liberal Robert Belleli inconsistently  ‘engaging’ heavy rail into the Government’s UAP agenda despite agreeing with The Greens that light rail should be ‘disengaged’ from it?

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Light Rail may return to the Randwick City Council area.

Last Tuesday’s unqualified motion by Labor’s Tony Bowen (supported by Bellleli) calling for heavy rail to Maroubra and Randwick junctions flies in the face of their recent well publicized opposition to the UAP proposal.

The previous Labor Government told Council to accept 8,400 new dwellings into our planning instrument LEP 2012, which is one reason why The Greens support the return of light rail to Randwick and Maroubra Junctions.

This year the state planning department (but apparently not the department of transport) have tried to co-opt light rail to justify many more new dwellings under the present Government’s Urban Activation Precinct (UAP) agenda. Which is why The Greens called for the return of light rail to Randwick to be disengaged from the UAPs.

But now Councillors Bowen and Belleli have inadvertently gone further than this. They have voted to direct Council to call for heavy rail without in any way restraining the Government from using it as a justification for excessive high rize development – something that they are both supposed to oppose.

If Councillors Bowen and Belleli want a high capacity heavy rail station in Maroubra Junction – with out disengaging it from dwelling increases – aren’t they implicitly supporting the Southern UAP by providing the needed transport infrastructure?

If the provision of light rail should be disengaged from justifying the UAPs, then surely so should heavy rail? I don’t think Councillors Bowen and Belleli actually perceive the inconsistency of their motion.

I will be moving on Council that we recognize the CBD and South East light rail line as the best rail strategy for Anzac Parade and that we carefully qualify Bowen and Belleli’s heavy rail endorsement to disengage it from the UAP.

Randwick Greens Councillor Murray Matson
@murraymatson

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