Randwick’s so-called “Bermuda Triangle” issue has flared up again with the Randwick-Botany Greens noting that both Labor and Liberal Commonwealth governments have failed to save it as environment park land.
Several years ago the Greens tried unsuccessfully to have the triangular piece of land at 4R Argyle Crescent in Southern Randwick put back in to the adjacent Randwick Environment Park.
In recent weeks dismayed residents have seen signs erected announcing that a number of impressive trees are scheduled to be removed to allow town houses to be built.
The triangle was removed from the proposed boundaries of the park some years before the previous Labor government handed it over to Randwick City Council in 2012.
Attempts by Greens Councillor Murray Matson to have the triangle rezoned to environmental status for re-inclusion were blocked by the Commonwealth who retain ownership.
Councillor Matson promised residents at a site meeting on Friday that he would try again to win protection for the site from the now Liberal government with the following Council motion.
“That Council as a matter of urgency write to the Commonwealth Government noting the recently announced removal of trees from the frontage of its Argyle Crescent property and requesting both a suspension of this action and the re-opening of dialogue with Council over the possibility of the site being returned to within the boundaries of the adjacent Randwick Environment Park.”
The site is known locally as the Bermuda Triangle because if you look on a map you see that there is no obvious explanation as to why the triangular piece of land would have vanished from within the boundaries of the now adjacent Park which surrounds it on all but one side.
Councillor Matson has blamed the former Labor Government for failing to protect the site when it had the power to do so. He stated this week;
“The previous Federal Labor Government could have given the Council permission to rezone this small area of land for re-inclusion in the Randwick Environment Park but did not do so despite approaches to local federal MP Peter Garrett. The present Liberal Government appears to be equally uninterested in taking up this never to be repeated opportunity to expand the borders of an urban environment park.”
Councillor Matson described the removed section as looking like an anomaly on the map.
“If you look on a map it is clear that its continuing exclusion is an anomaly. It sits awkwardly on the boundary of the park looking like a bite taken out of a pie. There is no reason why it should not be put back into the park. If it is developed for residential use I can see years of trouble for the Council in establishing and maintaining a suitable buffer zone between it and the adjacent park land with its sensitive flora, fauna and ephemeral wetlands.“
Councillor Matson said that the local Greens were making a last ditch plea “to the present Liberal Government to recognise the ecological value of restoring the triangle to the broader Randwick Environment Park and to provide it with a logically defined boundary line.”
The Randwick Environment Park is identified as “E2” on the map above and the disputed 4R Argyle Street site is labelled “SP2 DEFENCE”.