Randwick Councillors have voted to name the CSELR’s Alison Road light rail stop “Randwick Racecourse” despite a Council survey result showing two-to-one resident support for variations on “Centennial Park”.
The Racecourse was widely perceived as having used its influence to move the alignment of the CBD to South East Light Rail (CSELR) from the south to the north side of Darly road forcing the removal of Centennial Park trees.
Now dissenting Green Councillors Lindsay Shurey and Muray Matson say a racecourse name will not sit well with those residents who last year fought to save the Centennial Park trees from the light rail construction works.
A Council report voted on last Tuesday shows that 471 respondents favoured a Park related name against 233 who preferred a race course variation. Transport for NSW (TfNSW) also favours a park name as does Centennial Park’s official blog site.
“After the decision to relocate the Alison Road stop to sit inside Centennial Park, this proposal from Transport for NSW makes a lot of sense. The Park is open 365 days a year and attracts more than 10 million people annually – local, domestic and international, making it one of the most visited green spaces in Sydney.” (Centennial Park official blog)
Councillor Shurey will be submitting a Greens motion seeking to align the Council better with the community’s preferred name of “Centennial Park”.
In 2015 Greens Councillors Murray Matson and Lindsay Shurey rallied Randwick Council to protest the alignment change with a highly visible but eventually unsuccessful street sign campaign.
Councillor Matson said after last week’s Council meeting.
“The State Government inexplicably went against Randwick Council’s by approving a late minute switching of the rail lines to the north side of Alison Road forcing the removal of many Centennial Park trees. Council took a proud stand in favour of the communities fight to save the trees last year and we should not now be going against our own survey findings to name the stop after the racecourse. Why should we be supporting the promoting in Government timetables of a commercial entity over that of that of the public asset we have in Centennial Park?”