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Local Representation Advisory Committee Leichhardt

2 August 2016


Item No:†††††††† LL0816 Item 2

Subject:†††††††† Shields Playground - Proposed Netball Courts

File Ref:†††††††† 16/6014/76637.16 ††††††††

Prepared By: Aaron Callaghan - Senior Parks and Open Space Planner, Leichhardt †

Authorised By: Simone Schwarz - Director, Service Delivery



At the March 2016 Policy meeting, Leichhardt Council resolved with the Mayor using his casting vote in part as follows:


1.†† Proceed with detailed design works and the lodgement of a Development Application for the development of three hard surface netball Courts, public toilet facilities and associated landscaping improvements works at Shields Playground, Darley Road Leichhardt.


During the community engagement phase of this project substantial community opposition was noted at both public meetings during the public submission process and at Councilís March 2016 Policy Meeting.††


At the request of local residents, Councilís Administrator and Council staff met with residents on Monday 6th June 2016 to discuss the project and listen to community concerns.† At the conclusion of the meeting a commitment was undertaken that prior to lodging a Development Application, Council officers would consult colleagues and investigate options for netball court provision within the boundaries of the new Inner West Council. Consultation and investigations by Council officers has identified an alternative option for netball court and amenity provision. This report highlights the alternative option and provides recommendations from Council officers moving forward.






1.†††††† the Leichhardt Representation Advisory Committee note Council officers' advice on the suitability of an alternative site for netball court provision in the northern section of Richard Murden Reserve;

2.†††††† work on the preparation of a Development Application for netball courts and public amenities at Shields Playground is put on hold, pending the development of new concept plans and community engagement; and

3.†††††† local residents in both Ashfield and Leichhardt are consulted and updated on the alternative option.







Current Status

Councilís Senior Parks Planner has held discussions and undertaken site investigations with staff from both Marrickville and Ashfield branches of Council. An alternative option for the provision of three hard surfaced netball courts has been identified in the northern section of Richard Murden Reserve in Ashfield. Support for this initiative has been forthcoming from Council officers in both Ashfield and Marrickville.


The alternative option involves:

∑††† the upgrade of the two existing basketball courts to multipurpose courts (including netball provision)

∑††† the provision of one additional multipurpose court 

∑††† provision of a new amenities block

∑††† sports floodlighting for evening training

∑††† relocated path works

∑††† improved car parking facilities.  


The alternative option has a number of positive factors. Two existing courts are already in place and there is good access across the northern Hawthorne Canal Road pedestrian bridge to Blackmore Park (Leichhardt).. In addition the Leichhardt Wanderers Netball Club have their club rooms located in walking distance to this site and current netball courts in Richard Murden Reserve are not meeting the needs of this growing club.




Fig 1.0†† Arial Photo of Existing Hard Surfaced Basketball Courts-Northern Zone of Richard Murden Reserve (Ashfield)





Fig 1.1†† Ariel Photo Illustrating location of Original Proposal and Alternative location



Financial Implications

Council has funding of $704K which could be utilised for this project. Any future project will be subject to detailed design and a revision of costings.



Other Staff Comments

This option is supported by the Coordinator of Parks and Trees at the Ashfield Service Centre.



Public Consultation

Public consultation in accordance with Councilís community engagement framework will be undertaken once draft design options are completed for the proposed new multipurpose courts and the associated lighting and amenity provision.††




The opportunity to consult colleagues and investigate options for netball court provision within the boundaries of the new Inner West Council has arisen as a result of the recent Council amalgamations. These investigations have identified an alternative option for netball courts and public amenity provision.


An alternative option in the northern portion of Richard Murden Reserve has been identified as a possible option for netball facility within the new local government area. The site identified has a number of positives in terms of its location and proximity to the former Leichhardt LGA and in meeting local sporting needs into the future. It is recommended that Council proceed with new design options for the upgrading of the existing court facilities and the provision of one additional court, sports floodlighting and public amenity improvements. Car parking issues will also be addressed as part of any new design study.