History council-style


Tyrrell Street without trees

Only a few days to the charette where the community can redesign our perfect street. I hope the people taking part will be able to explain to council in short sentences and words of few syllables that they should know better and  that they need some tree preservation advice rather than chainsaw advice.

The council’s online Laman Street background is a true piece of work. I suppose I’m never going to be satisfied with the way they see it but a couple of things caught my eye this week.

In a previous post I whined talked about how slanted their explanation of the Hill’s figs failures seemed to be. I read through the council’s Newcastle Voice document last night and was interested in lots of the comments. This document reproduces many (?all) of the comments that people faxed/emailed to council about their vision for the street.

(It’s lovely how creative some people are with their ideas about how to bring people into a public space like Civic Park – a stage, coffee or food vans, a sculpture garden, music in the park, keeping the rail line and slowing the traffic in King Street etc.)

I was very surprised to see that people are allegedly fairly evenly split between keeping the trees and replacing them – and then I found my own comment which was summarised as ‘replace the trees’.

Can you believe that? Yeah, right – like I’m going to go to all this trouble and agree to replace the trees without a fuss? What I expressed was doubt about the trees’ risk and then said that if they truly were a risk we should spend a decade or so looking after them while we grow replacement trees. And that’s my compromise view.

I note they left out my suggestion to put a children’s play area in the park: I even suggested some council officers could go on a junket to Victoria and see some of the beautiful playgrounds there, some of which are funded by private companies. Civic Park’s a bit like your Aunty Mabel’s living room: kept for ‘good’ rather than a place where visiting children can relax.

I would call that yet another example of why my level of trust in this process is so low.

Compare the following two views of the cause of the failure of the Tyrrell Street Hill’s figs several years ago: the first is from council’s website, the second is a resident’s entry in the Newcastle Voice Vision document. (Remember to double-click over the document to enlarge it.) Home


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4 Responses to “History council-style”

  1. Ali Says:

    A meeting is only as good as its record!

  2. Sharon Healey Says:

    Oh! what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive!

  3. Jacqueline Says:

    Wow! The letter from the ‘Newcastle Voice’ shocked me.

  4. Did you know bitumen can hold up a tree? « Save Our Figs and other trees in Newcastle Says:

    […] and were taken down – not counting the ones that fell in the storm that followed council cutting through them. It’s a shame we couldn’t have relied on the bitumen holding up the […]

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