Monthly Archives: February 2017

Randwick to consider adopting City of Sydney Green Wall policy – 28th February 2017

UPDATE: The policy was adopted at last night’s Randwick Council meeting.

Tonight Randwick Greens Councillor Murray Matson will urge Randwick Council to adopt the City of Sydney’s Green wall policy.

Councillor Matson says:

Small green wall added to an existing toilet block. Source City of Sydney case study.

“Randwick Council could seek to adopt the City of Sydney green wall policy. Then it would be an architectural possibility for designers to consider when commissioned to plan town centre buildings or as an option for Councillors to consider for any Council facility building.  It could also be a retrofitting option suggested by Council when proposals come along to freshen up or re-render some of our more unfortunate 1970’s style blocks of existing flats.”

SMH writer Leesha McKenny recently covered the green wall concept. Councillor Matson say’s that green walls are already suggested in Randwick’s draft Kensington and Kingsford Planning Strategy. But he says that it could also have Council wide relevance by further adding it into the Council’s general Development Control Plan (DCP).


The City of Sydney states that it is committed to increasing the number of high quality green roofs and walls in Sydney. In April 2014, the City adopted the green roofs and walls policy – the first of its kind in Australia.

The City of Sydney considers Green roofs and walls as providing many environmental and community benefits and as “an integral part of any sustainable city”.

Sydney Council lists some benefits as:

  • improved air quality
  • beautifying buildings and the cityscape
  • supporting local biodiversity
  • supporting our physical and mental health
  • insulating buildings from heat and noise
  • creating new open space for recreation and food growing
  • extending roof life by protecting the waterproofing layer from weather and temperature changes
  • improving solar panel efficiency
  • cooling city temperatures and reducing the urban heat island effect
  • slowing and cleaning storm water runoff from buildings


“That Council brings back a report to Councillors on the City of Sydney’s Green Roofs and Walls Policy assessing adoption of our own version of the Policy along with possible amendments to our Development Control Plan.”

UPDATE: Latest version of CSELR Light Rail amendment for Randwick Council debate – 27th February 2017

Here is the latest version of Randwick Greens Councillor Murray Matson’s  CSELR light rail amendment for Tuesday night’s Randwick Council meeting.

TEXT OF AMENDMENT to item NM10/17 motion pursuant to notice: “Light Rail Capacity study – Call for Commission of Inquiry”

“That Council notes that on the 15th of September 2016 Greens MLC Mehreen Faruqi unsuccessfully moved to set up a NSW parliamentary Select Committee on the CBD and South East Light Rail Project and will:

  1. Now call for the NSW Parliament to reconsider Greens MLC Mehreen Faruqi’s motion of the 15th September for the setting up of NSW Parliamentary Select Committee on the CBD and South East Light Rail Project;
  2. Commission a follow up study on the EMM findings reassessing their combined bus and light rail predictions using:
  • improved light rail service frequencies on the branch line of 6,5,4 and 2 minutes for 2020;
  • different achievable occupancy rates including the corridor’s average bus capacity of 70%;
  • a total dedication of the entirety of the CSELR line to rail only;
  • the adoption of Moving Block Signalling;
  • the extension of the Kingsford branch stations to allow for three or more linked carriages; and
  • other frequency enhancing strategies that Council officers think useful; and
  1. Consider a General Manager’s report on the follow up study’s findings with a view to making an appropriate submission to NSW parliamentarians or to a NSW parliamentary committee.”



Cooks Cove:Barton Park – Bayside Council should vote on Barton Park say St George Greens Council candidates – Monday 27th February, 2017

Bayside Council Greens Council candidates say the proposal to relocate Kogarah Golf Club to Barton Park in Cooks Cove is a “disgraceful land grab that should not be decided by council administrators” – and have called on all Local Government election candidates to oppose it.

“This proposal puts developer greed ahead of the local community’s needs,” said Brent Heber and Greta Werner, both Greens candidates in the upcoming Local Government elections for Bayside Council.

“For the council’s administrators to undertake such a massive scale of re-planning bypasses the democratic process.

“Bayside residents deserve for these matters to be deferred six months until after the September elections, so our chosen councillors can make these decisions.”

St George Greens also challenged all Bayside Local Government candidates to make their positions known on this issue before the September election.

“If any Local Government candidates actually support this proposal, they need to be up-front with the community and declare their position,” Heber and Werner said.

All Greens councillors are firmly opposed to the plan, which Heber and Werner said would “…massively increase urban density, take a treasured public space from the community, and threaten wetlands that are ecologically vital for native birds and wildlife.”

“The Greens are standing up to defend our local lifestyle, our access to internationally significant wetlands and playing fields.”

Bayside Council, currently being run under an Administrator, is set to make a recommendation on the fate of a huge amount of pubic green space.

The Kogarah Golf Club has proposed relocating south to take over Barton Park, the local wetlands and many playing fields to turn them into a privately operated golf course – all so they can sell off their existing land to developers and profit from 5000 planned residences.


Greta Werner Greens candidate for Bayside Council in 2017
Brent Heber Greens candidate for Bayside Council in 2017

CSELR crush factors: open letter to Michael Daley MP for Maroubra requesting support for further EMM study for Randwick Council into light rail capacities between Kingsford and Maroubra – 26th February 2017

The Hon. Michael Daley
Labor MP for Maroubra

Hello Michael

Re: “Sydney CBD and South East light rail crowding rates exceed bus and train ‘crush capacity’” (Sean Nichols, SMH 21st Feb 2017)

Sean Nichols’ article highlights the responsibilities that will face both you as the MP for Maroubra and Councillors such as me when the State Government’s CSELR light rail opens in 2020.

The arrival of the light rail is now a reality that we will be called on as local representatives to make work best for our shared constituents.

I draw your attention to the capacity figures given by table 3.2 in the Council commissioned EMM report on page 9.

The table essentially says that the required combined light rail and residual bus capacity on the Kensington to Kingsford branch of the line in 2020 will be just 4,045 passengers per hour. But this can only be treated as theoretical because as Sean’s article makes clear a 100% occupancy level is unachievable as commuters would baulk at it.

The top line of figures in the role labelled “Interim” demonstrates what Sean is referring to. The most reasonable occupancy level that commuters will probably tolerate is given by EMM as being 80%.

This effectively means that there will have to be extra capacity found in the combined system light rail and bus mix flowing between Kingsford and Kensington. EMM states that the total effective capacity on opening day 2020 will need to be 5,056 passengers per hour.

EMM’s solution to finding this extra capacity is to simply keep more buses running, in this case 26 per hour as shown in the far right figure in the “Interim row. This may or may not be in the best interests of our residents. Will these extra buses actually provide access to where our resident’s want to go? This is the destination issue.

Then there is the occupancy issue. According to EMM the current average bus occupancy level is just 70% and not the suggested 80% for the CSELR. Should we not as local representatives be lobbying for the light rail to offer the same occupancy experience as what residents are currently accustomed to getting on buses?

Mathematics suggests that 70% occupancy could be achieved by running the light rail carriages at one every 5.6 minutes instead of the planned one every 8 minutes on opening day. I note that the frequency is already planned to rise to one every 6.5 minutes by 2031.

At Tuesday night’s Council meeting I will be moving that Council commission another study to look in more depth at EMM’s predicted light rail capacities. I want to suggest the obvious possibility of a variety of faster frequencies than just one every 8 minutes. I will also be suggesting that a more comfortable occupancy rate of 70% on the CSELR be aimed for.

I attach my proposed amendment for your interest. Should it be passed I ask that you lend the resources of your office to helping your local council achieve the best mix of occupancy rates and running frequencies for light rail and buses between Kingsford and Kensington.

These responsibilities of our constituents may become all yours alone if the pending merger of Randwick Council removes us Councillors from office.

If I survive the transition and remain in office I look forward to working with you to achieve the best light rail and bus service between Kingsford and Kensington for our residents.

I welcome any suggestions that you might have about my proposed amendment for Tuesday night.

Randwick Greens Councillor Murray Matson 0409-984-587 @murraymatson

CC Matt Thistlethwaite
Bruce Notley-Smith MP
Ron Hoenig MP

Anzac Parade Corridor Light Rail Analysis 2016 prepared for Randwick City Council by EMM January 20th 2017

Randwick City Council has commissioned EMM to produce an analysis of how the CSELR light rail service will operate in the Kingsford to Kensington section of Anzac Parade as part of it’s draft
Kensington and Kingsford Planning Strategy

Click here for the EMM report: Anzac Parade Corridor Light Rail Analysis 2016

Artist’s impression of the future CSELR light rail service on Anzac Parade between Kensington and Kingsford.

The draft Kingsford and Kensington Plannin Strategy is Randwick Council’s key argument that multiple random spot rezonings to 25 storeys int the two town centres should not be permitted by the NSW Government.

Randwick Greens Councillor Murray Matson is proposing to respond to media comment on the EMM reporty by moving the following amendment at the Randwick City Council meeting of the 28th Febraury 2017.

Amendment: “That Council notes that on the 15th of September 2016 Greens MLC Mehreen Farugui successfully set up the NSW parliamentary Select Committee on the CBD and South East Light Rail Project that will include in its inquiries:

  • (c) the impact of the project on public transport patronage and relevant government transport targets; and
  • (d) any modelling, analysis and studies on public transport usage associated with project design and decisions;

Accordingly Council will:

  1. Wait until the current Select Committee has finished and its findings are available for study before considering calling for another inquiry; and
  2. Commission a follow up study on the EMM findings reassessing their combined bus and light rail predictions using improved light rail service frequencies on the Kingsford branch line of 5, 4 and 2 minutes for 2020 based on different occupancy rates comprising  of EMM’s figure of 80% for light rail and that of EMM’s reported current average bus capacity of 70%; and
  3. Consider a General Manager’s report on the follow up study’s findings with a view to making an appropriate submission to the NSW parliamentary Select Committee on the CBD and South East Light Rail Project.”


Coogee Beach storm water pipe contamination: Greens Councillor Murray Matson lodges Randwick council motion to explore fix-it options – 23rd February 2017

Greens Councillor Murray Matson’s storm motion “Review efficiency of current gross pollutant trap and discharge pipe at north end of Coogee Beach Water” will be debated at the Randwick Council meeting of the 28th February 2017.

Is the water at Coogee Beach clean enough to swim in or should Randwick Council do more to clean up its storm water pipe discharges at the northern end of the beach?

Councillor Matson says that the beach water contamination from the notorious north Coogee Beach storm water discharge pipe  presents a number of different issues.

He says:

“Along with the ‘wet whether flow’ issue of visible contamination in the waters off Coogee Beach when it rains there is also a ‘dry whether flow’ issue. The first is caused by planned-for overflows from Sydney Water sewerage pipes into the storm water pipes when heavy rain water enters and overwhelms the sewer system.  The ‘dry whether flow’ issuer suggests that there are unknown illegal or accidental connections between the local sewerage system and the storm water system that are consistently leaking contamination out into the beach water.”


“That Randwick Council monitors gross pollutant, bacterial and faecal contamination in discharges from the north Coogee Beach storm water pipe after both high rainfalls and during periods of dry weather and reports the data back to a Council meeting along with an assessment of corrective options that shall include;

  • Assessment of the immediate need to improve, replace or duplicate the Dolphin Street gross pollutant trap;
  • Assessing extending the stormwater pipe’s discharge point further off the beach by diverting the pipe through the adjacent northern headland;
  • The reducing of dry weather contamination flows by plans for a vigorous search for illegal or accidental sewage entry points into the storm water pipe itself;
  • Adopting a Council policy point of negotiating with local Members of Parliament and appropriate State Government authorities for a deed of agreement with Sydney Water to achieve reductions in the necessity of deliberate wet weather sewage overflow releases into the local stormwater system;
  • Adopting a Council policy point of working with the State Government to implement new infrastructure solutions including re-routing parts of the sewer system away from Coogee beach and more directly connecting to the Malabar STP; and
  • Plans for a special rate levy to fund relevant capital works programs.”

Randwick Councillors in brutal dilemma as they try to sandbag Kensington and Kingsford against spot rezoning proposals – 21st February 2017

Randwick Greens Councillor Murray Matson publically replies to the emailed concerns about the draft Kensington and Kingsford Planning Strategy from a parent of a child attending the Kensington Public School


Invitation to participate in an online discussion about the  Randwick Council’s Draft Kensington and Kingsford Planning Strategy

Randwick Council has a hard decision to make if it is to prevent 25 storey high rizes in the Kensington and Kingsford town centres.

I am going to post this conversation on the site as  I will open it up for comments to be posted and I will answer them as one of your elected Councillors.

Thank you for email about your concerns for the Kensington Public School with the attached email from the precinct committee. I ask that you circulate this reply to the parents who attend Kensington Public School as you say that the original KWKP precinct email was.

The following quote is  taken from the invitation to the KWKP precinct meeting and pretty much sums up the appalling dilemma that Randwick City Councillors are in.

TOGA re-applied to the NSW Department of Planning in April 2016, requesting a “gateway determination” from the then Joint Regional Planning Panel “JRPP”. The NSW Dept of Planning expressed the view that the proposal had “merit.” However, the JRPP rejected that planning proposal on the ground that Randwick Council was reviewing its local strategy in Kensington & Kingsford.”

The dilemma is this.

  • Private developers like Toga are trying to get around the Council’s height limits by making direct appeals to the State Government for ‘spot’ rezoning’s that will allow 25 storey buildings in Kensington and Kingsford.
  • The Government happily sends them to the independent JRPP (now the Sydney Central Planning Panel) knowing that the panel will wear the adverse community reaction.
  • The professional town planners who make up the majority of votes on the panel have up until now accepted that the Council’s approach is more sensible than the State Government’s uncoordinated go-for-it attitude and are currently refusing the spot rezoings for 25 towers.
  • But they only do it because they know that the Council is serious about proposing mostly 9 storey’s with three site specific heights of 18 storeys and as professionals they support the principle of integrated planning.
  • But the refusal votes are usually very close. It can sometimes be three votes for refusal against two votes for approval of a 25 storey tower.
  • The moment that the Panel sees that Council is backing away from its draft strategy is the moment when the Panel starts approving random 25 storey towers to jaggedly break the Kingsford and Kensington sky lines.

And that’s the Council’s dilemma. Once we drop our coordinated 9 storey/18 storey draft strategy the private developers will fill the planning vacuum with their spot rezonings which is an outcome that a majority of elected Councillors find appalling and don’t want to see happen on their watch. But because we don’t drop the strategy it is currently open to our own precinct committee KWKP to attack us for promoting higher building limits.

The reality is thus both Labor and Liberal State Governments have taken steps to diminish the planning authority of local Councillors. Labor started it when former Planning Minister Frank Sartor implemented the independent JRPP’s and the Liberals have further refined it by replacing the JRPP in our area with the Sydney Central Planning Panel last year. All the intervention influence that is now left to Randwick City Council is to appeal for a recognition of the principal of integrated development over that of spot rezonings. I refer you to this article.

The Council’s draft Strategy will soon go on public exhibition if the Planning Minister agrees.

I suggest that your valid concerns for the Kensington Public School should be made as a submission calling for more state infrastructure support for it. I point out that, although individual spot rezoning proposals also have to be exhibited, it is unlikely that the state government will ever see the need to supply support to the school for a single tower proposal. Thus the School will be incrementally disadvantaged as each spot rezoning goes through.

Randwick Greens Councillor Murray Matson – @murraymatson

Sent: Tuesday, 21 February 2017 12:59 PM
Subject: Kensington Public School

Dear Councillors,

The below message was sent to all parents of Kensington Public School (KPS) last week.

Parents at KPS, myself included, are opposed to the Kensington and Kingsford Draft Planning Strategy because the foreshadowed scale of this development combined with Light Rail infrastructure is innappropriate, will encroach significantly on KPS and parents and children of KPS will suffer a huge loss of amenity.

KPS parents will most certainly be registering their opposition to the proposals made under the Draft Planning Strategy in the near future.

Notwithstanding the KPS community’s opposition, even if Council proceeds with plans to consult the community in respect of the Draft Planning Strategy during public exhibition, it is noted Council has not provided any assurances as to what it will do to counter the loss of amenity that the KPS community will inevitably subjected to. Nor has Council provided any assurances of how it will improve the amenity and surroundings of KPS and its community.

Specifically, no assurances have been provided about:

– parking for staff and parents picking up and dropping off their children to school
– road safety around the school
– the school’s capacity to meet an increased intake demand given the projected population target for Kensington is set to rise
– classroom space at KPS noting there is no further space for any additional classrooms at the school
– the already limited playground space noting this space will be further compromised with an increased student intake demand given the projected population targets
– whether overhshadowing will be caused to the school’s grounds by the proposed high-rise on the corner of Todman Ave & Anzac Pde and the duration period of over-shadowing.

It would be remiss of RCC to pass the buck onto the Department of Education to answer the above and any further questions KPS parents may wish to raise because this Draft Planning Strategy was initiated by RCC and responsibility to account to the KPS community rests entirely with RCC.

Please could you forward my email to RCC, General Manager, Mr Ray Brownlee.
I look forward to hearing from you.

Kind Regards,


KPS parent & Kensington resident.

Dear Parents,

You are invited to the next Kensington and West Kingsford Precinct (KWKP) meeting which will be taking place on Monday, 20 February 2017 at 7:15pm at Our Lady of the Rosary School Hall, Corner Grosvenor Street and Kensington Road.

The KWKP is a resident run group open for all residents and property owners in the area to attend to discuss local issues. The KWKP meetings are a Randwick City Council initiative designed to consult and engage the local community in Council’s decision-making processes. Details about proposed projects and plans are provided in precinct meetings and the community’s comments are sought and reported back to Randwick City Councillors who are elected to consider the community’s views in their decision making processes.

A Brief Outline of Development Proposals Put Forward at Sites in close proximity to Kensington Public School

Towards the end of 2016, Randwick City Council prepared the Kensington and Kingsford Draft Planning Strategy (DPS). Details of the DPS can be found in the following link –

As the attached link shows, Randwick City Council proposes to change the height and density controls along a 2.5km stretch of Anzac Parade (between Carlton St Kensington to South Juniors in Kingsford).

The current permissible height, on Anzac Parade, from Feb 2O13 has been 7 storeys on the Anzac parade rontage. The amended plan is proposing to increase heights to 9 storeys, except for 3 sites in Kensington & Kingsford, which will be increased to 60 metres, capable of 20 storeys. There are “bonuses” for good design, another 2 storeys and “bonuses” for “affordable housing” provision – Dwellings rented at 20% less than market rent. Mean 2br rents in Kensington are $650 per week. So residents question “affordability”.

Significantly, one of the proposals of the DPS has the potential to impact Kensington Public School and the surrounding community. On the corner of Todman Ave and Anzac Parade, (specifically, 112 Todman Ave and 111-125 Anzac Parade – surrounding and including the ‘Maths not Squiggles’ tutoring building) Randwick Council proposes to re-zone this location to allow a development of 18 storeys in height.

An eighteen storey height development is the equivalent of 60 metres. To give an idea of scale, the development on the corner of Duke St and Anzac Parade is 7 storeys so, the proposed development on the Maths Not Squiggles site is about 2.5 times higher. The Developer of this site is TOGA. The DPS has been sent to the NSW Department of Planning, for a “gateway determination’. The Department of Planning may approve the Planning Proposal as it is, or make amendments. If the DPS is approved, then Randwick Council will place the DPS and resulting LEP on public exhibition. At this stage, the Council MUST engage in “community consultation” inviting written submissions.

TOGA also owns 137 – 151 Anzac Parade Kensington (site of the Golden Kingdom Motel) and submitted development plans to Randwick City Council to develop this site to 83 metres from its current 25 metres. Randwick Council reject TOGA’s proposal. TOGA re-applied to the NSW Department of Planning in April 2016, requesting a “gateway determination” from the then Joint Regional Planning Panel “JRPP”. The NSW Dept of Planning expressed the view that the proposal had “merit.” However, the JRPP rejected that planning proposal on the ground that Randwick Council was reviewing its local strategy in Kensington & Kingsford.

Some residents in Kensington have recently expressed concern that if the 112 Todman Ave / 111-125 Anzac Parade site is approved for development to 60 metres, would this then open the gateway for other neighbouring property owners to apply for spot-rezonings of equivalent height?

Under recently amended NSW legislation regarding planning proposals, a developer may apply to the ‘Greater Sydney Commission Planning Panel’ and lodge a spot re-zoning application at any time.

Can These Development Proposals, If Implemented, affect The KPS Community?

The development proposals described above would foreseeably, by their very nature, bring to the roads and surrounding areas of KPS, the following;

Congestion. If such development proposals were implemented, there would be an increase in population, an increase in vehicles causing more traffic, more limitations on parking already in short-supply around KPS, safety concerns with regards to student set-down and pick-ups when there is more vehicle congestion on the short stretch of Doncaster Ave currently used by parents to drop off and pick up their children.

Further, it is forseeable KPS will be further impacted by the congestion not only arising from the increased population such development can bring but also because Light Rail network that is currently under construction and the location of the Light Rail station being near the corner of Todman Ave and Anzac Parade.

In the last 5 years, KPS has narrowed its catchment zone twice and is at full student intake capacity. The above development proposals would ensure KPS would be further limited in accepting students in its catchment zone because of the rise in population these development proposals would create.

It is important that all parents of Kensington Public School take part in KWKP meetings to ensure the best outcome for KPS children, KPS and the local community and surroundings of KPS.

Randwick Council calls for its Councillors to be kept in place after its merger because of the extent of its prepared transition plans – 17th February 2017

Premier Gladys Berejiklian confirmed last Tuesday that the merger of Randwick, Waverley and Woollahra Councils will proceed. But she didn’t state whether existing Councillors would remain in place up to the next elections.

Randwick Greens Councillor Murray Matson has responded with a successful Council urgency motion calling for the retention of Councillors to oversee the Council’s prepared transition plans for implementing the merger.

Randwick Greens Councillor Lindsay Shurey used her Council position to successfully save High Cross Park by spearheading Council’s identification of an alternative site for the light rail interchange. Greens Councillor Murray Matson is still campaigning for the State Government share of the old Kingsford Market sites to be dedicated to Randwick Council as a future new centre for the merged Council.

Council will contact the Premier reiterating that Randwick’s preference was to stand-alone and that Councillors should continue to serve post-merger in any new Council. Councillor Matson said;

“None of the Councillors have liked the idea of Randwick being merged as we have been financially sustainable since 2004. But we accepted that it would happen and we and our magnificent staff have prepared extensive merger transition plans to make it as seamless an experience as we can for the residents of all three eastern suburbs Councils. We would be the most prepared NSW Council for a merger. And we have done it because we regarded it as due diligence to ensure that services such as child care centres, rubbish pickups, and library availability all work perfectly from day zero of the new Council.”

Councillor Matson points to a list of contentious issues that he says “could start to drift against residents interests if only administrators are left in charge by the Premier.”

He said,

“Constituents frequently contact Councillors about the impact of construction works for the CSELR light rail project which won’t be finished for a couple years. I want Councillors to maintain control of the funding in the Randwick Council’s Light Rail Support Plan that I put up to help local business and South Juniors cope with loss of parking.

Randwick Greens Councillor Murray Matson rallied Randwick Council to protest changes to the alignment of the CSELR light rail line resulting in trees losses in Alison Road next to Centennial Park.

And it was sitting Greens Councillor Lindsay Shurey and former Mayor Scott Nash who responded to Ms Rickie-Lee McLaurin-Smith’s campaign to save High Cross Park from the light rail interchange.”

Councillor emphasised the need for elected Councillors to control and curb a development push in Kensington and Kingsford saying:

“Then there is the draft Kensington and Kingsford Planning Strategy that Councillors want to use to lock out uncontrolled ‘spot’ rezoning proposals to build 25 storey towers. Without sitting Councillors to push for it the draft strategy could either be ignored by the State Government or inappropriately amended to placate the developer lobbyists from the Urban Task Force.”

Randwick Council is larger than both Woollahra and Waverley. Most of the Randwick Councillors all seem to agree that they don’t want to see the new centre of administration and governance moving north into what is presently Waverley Council territory. Councillor Matson said:

“Allied to that is the rivalry between Waverley and Randwick Councillors over whether the new Council’s administration centre should be up in Bondi Junction or sited locally on the old Kingsford market site, which we regard as more conveniently located for future constituents. It will after all be on the CSELR light rail line.

There are also a host of more localized issues that residents routinely expect Councillors to
speak up on such as:

  • Arguing for residents against proposals to use the contaminated surplus land on the surplus Defence land at Bundock Street for a construction depot;
  • Maintaining opposition to the liquor prohibition at the East Ward Senior Citizens Center;
  • Building heights at Maroubra and Coogee Beaches;
  • The scale of redevelopment of the Bondi Pavilion;
  • Maintaining the Laperouse Chinese Markets as an urban food farm;
  • Funding local projects needed by schools, sport associations, surf clubs, community gardens, artists and child care centres;
  • Adjudicating parking competition in residential areas; and
  • Myriad small groups of neighbours who want intervention from their elected representatives on local development applications occurring in their street.

CONTACT: Randwick Greens Councillor Murray Matson – @murraymatson

BACKGROUND – Resolution to urgency motion by Greens Councillor Murray Matson and as seconded by Councillor Robert Belleli (Tuesday 14th February 2017).

That Council responds to today’s media release by the new NSW Premier, Ms Gladys Berejiklian, by contacting her to congratulate her and:

      1. a) to remind her that our submission to the Boundaries Commission inquiry on the proposed merger of Randwick with Waverley and Woollahra Councils noted that our community’s preferred position and Council’s resolved position is to stand alone;
      2. b) should we be merged, formally advise her of the full and comprehensive preparation of Council’s Merger Transition Plan; and
      3. c) advise that Council prefers the retention of the existing Councillors to provide oversight of the implementation of these transition plans on behalf of our constituents.


Randwick Greens Councillor Murray Matson clarifies the type of affordable housing sought by Randwick Council in the Kensington and Kingsford town centres – February 7th 2017

Can Randwick Councillors use a better type of affordable housing to allow essential workers to afford to rent in the eastern suburbs areas that they work in?

Dear NeighboursNotStrangers

Re: your media release of today.

I agree with your petition against the abuse of short term leasing and I have signed it.

But I am worried that you might be mixing up two different forms of affordable housing when you refer to today’s SMH article.

The affordable housing type that will be allowed along the Anzac Parade corridor will be given to Randwick City Council to own and administer.

Can Randwick Councillors use a better type of affordable housing to bring essential workers into local housing?

Can Randwick Councillors use a better type of affordable housing to allow essential workers to afford to rent in the eastern suburbs areas that they work in?

These are controlled by State Environmental Planning Policy No 70—Affordable Housing (Revised Schemes) otherwise known as SEPP 70.

If you look at clause 9 of SEPP 70 you will see that at present it only applies to the Councils of the City of South Sydney, City of Sydney, City of Willoughby and Leichhardt (now abolished). But Randwick will be added to this list.

The challenge for Councillors is to accept this permanent version of affordable housing with out allowing a relaxation of our development controls.

Greens Councillor Murray Matson@murraymatson



Tuesday, 07 February 2017


Residential Housing is for the housing of Residents

Today the Sydney Morning Herald reports 200 new affordable homes for your LGA. Airbnb/Stayz combined have already taken 2,657 homes from Randwick Council Residents.

The Community group Neighbours Not Strangers asks Premier Gladys Berejiklian and Ministers Dominello, Roberts, Perrottet and Kean to ensure that there are no retrospective changes to Zoning and Planning Legislation governing our homes and home lives.  Borrowing from our Californian friends:

In 1926 an Ohio realty company challenged the concept of zoning.  It wanted to lease land in a residential zone to hotels and other businesses.  Zoning laws, it argued, unfairly diminished the value of its property.  The US Supreme Court rejected that challenge, saying that non-residential uses may have an increasingly deleterious impact on a residential district “until, finally, the residential character of the neighborhood and its desirability as a place of residence is utterly destroyed”.

Property Owners and Tenants choose to live in Residential Dwellings and Residential Areas.  A NSW Parliamentary Hearing Committee has recommended that, despite having purchased or rented a home or an apartment, we should all now live in unregulated quasi-Hotels and Transit Zones, sharing endless drunken parties, higher levies, taxes, insurance premiums and levels of criminality.

NO:  We don’t want our home lives, buildings, communities, towns and cities utterly destroyed.

Randwick Council has 2,657 tourist/visitor lets on Airbnb/Stayz; only 501 homes are advertised for rent on Domain

Photo credit:


Trish Burt Convener

Neighbours Not Strangers

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Please help Randwick Councillors establish an effective working relationship on planning issues with new Premier Gladys Berejiklian and new Planning Minister Anthony Roberts – 6th February 2017

DISCLAIMER: The views expressed below on the NSW planning environment are purely the personal opinion of Randwick Greens Councillor Murray Matson. They should not be interpreted as an official GreensNSW party statement but as coming from a local Randwick perspective.

I am asking that you consider re-tweeting this tweet on how Randwick Council is trying to represent the interests of our residents while setting supportable new heights and building densities in these two town centres.

Please consider re-tweeting

Please consider re-tweeting

Fact: Both successive NSW Labor and Liberal state governments have followed a policy of reducing the strategic planning autonomy of local Councils. This occurred first under Labor with the introduction of independent Joint Regional Planning Panels (JRPP) and has continued under the Liberals with last year’s creation of Sydney district Planning Panels.This often misunderstood reality flows from the fact that Australian Councils have no constitutional recognition as our legitimate third tier of government.

As a 21 year veteran Councillor I have come to the conclusion that there is no point in not recognising that Environmental Planning & Assessment Act 1979 grants ultimate legislative authority for State Governments over a Council in the setting of a Local Environmental Plan (LEP).  This means that we Councillors will always be under the ultimate direction of various Government Ministers of the day under the NSW Local Government Act.

I might not personally like this unavoidable constraint on me as a Councillor, but a reality it remains.

This is why I am as supporter of Randwick Council’s attempts to form a working relationship with the new Planning Minister over development pressures along the section of Anzac Parade bracketed by the Kingsford and Kensington town centres. I stand ready to do the same if the Labor party wins state power at the next election.

It is the Liberal Government choice to continue the previous Labor government’s wariness of allowing direct local government strategic planning autonomy. But new Premier Gladys Berejiklian and new Planning Minister Anthony Roberts can still be open to recognising when a Council attempts a genuine non-adversarial planning strategy that recognises changing urban needs against the alternative of allowing piece-meal spot rezonings.

CONTACT: Randwick Greens Councillor Murray Matson – @murraymatson