Draft Generic Plan of Management - Sportsgrounds

Submissions Close 21 July 2015

Submissions have now closed.

Public Hearing

A public hearing regarding the proposed re-categorisation of the four additional fields from ‘parks’ to ‘sportsgrounds’ was held at The Hills Shire Council, 3 Columbia Court, Baulkham Hills on Wednesday 22 July 2015 at 6.30pm. This meeting was chaired by an independent facilitator.

Land Recategorisation Public Hearing Report(PDF, 3MB)

Enquiries: Gaynor Corfield, Senior Co-ordinator Community Projects and Engagement on 02 9843 0361.

What is The Hills Shire Council doing to address rapid growth in sports participation?

Many residents would be aware of the growing number of people wanting to play competition sport in The Hills. Council is regularly approached by teams looking for fields that will allow new teams to play. These are often families with young children looking for an active hobby or clubs seeking to develop skills and create a future path for talented young players.

Currently all local fields are allocated to existing teams, yet the demand for sports facilities grows daily and is expected to significantly increase over the coming years as the populations grows.

The Hills Shire Council is planning for more open space in the future in a number of ways. Four new major sporting fields are in the early planning stages for Kellyville Park, Arnold Avenue Reserve, Kenthurst Park and the Balmoral Road Release Area – and these will be ready for action within the next few years. As well, more land is being purchased in new release areas and this land will be turned into sports fields in the longer term.

Clearly, these ways of creating new fields will take time. Right now, Council is looking at the possibility of increasing the flexibility of use for four existing parks and reserves in a way that will balance the needs of all user groups. These parks are Connie Lowe Reserve Rouse Hill, MacKillop Drive Reserve Baulkham Hills, Turon Ave Reserve Baulkham Hills and Pye Avenue Northmead.

To achieve this, Council is updating the Generic Sports Plan of Management covering these reserves. This will allow the reserves to be considered for use in the future for sport.


Turon Avenue Reserve, Baulkham Hills

If Council considers Turon Avenue Reserve suitable for more flexible uses, detailed designs would be developed and the community consulted. This possibility will be considered after the close of the exhibition period on 21 July 2015.


Pye Avenue Reserve, Northmead

If Council considers Pye Avenue Reserve suitable for sport activities, detailed designs would be developed and the community consulted. This option will be considered after the close of the exhibition period on 21 July 2015.


Connie Lowe Reserve

Although Connie Lowe Reserve is currently being used as a dog off-leash area, the original contributions plan classified it as ‘parkland’ – with provision for a junior sports oval. In the past, only limited sport has been played there. For this reserve, Council is considering a win-win solution that allows sports to return to the oval, while accommodating a new facility for dog owners close by. If this should proceed, provision would be made for additional parking and upgraded facilities. The suitability of Connie Lowe Reserve for this purpose will be considered after the close of the exhibition period on 21 July 2015.


MacKillop Reserve, Baulkham Hills

MacKillop Reserve is a community space that was originally planned and constructed in 1994/95 to have the capability for both passive recreation and sporting activities. The original masterplan was placed on exhibition and residents and Councillors notified in writing that the intention was that a village green would be constructed to be large enough for future use as a sports field if necessary. For this reserve, Council is considering a solution that allows the area identified in the original masterplan to now be used for sports as was intended. The current use of the remainder of the reserve’s open space would remain unchanged. The suitability of MacKillop Reserve for this purpose will be considered after the close of the exhibition period on 21 July 2015.

As part of this process, Council has invited the community to have their say for these four reserves. At the end of the public exhibition process, Council will make a decision that takes into account everyone’s comments. Should Council choose to proceed with any of the suggested changes, the next steps would involve looking closely at how this can be achieved and consulting the community.

Public Notices (as advertised from 9 June 2015)

Council resolved at its meeting 26 May 2015 (see attachment Item 16 pg 283 - Amendment to the Generic Plan of Management for Sportsgrounds) to amend and to place on public exhibition the updated Generic Plan.

The Generic Plan of Management for Sports grounds authorises the lease or licence of community land and the actual conditions of hire.

The amendments include four (4) additional fields for Sportsgrounds:

  • Connie Lowe Reserve, Rouse Hill
  • MacKillop Drive Reserve, Baulkham Hills
  • Turon Avenue Reserve, Baulkham Hills
  • Pye Avenue Reserve, Northmead

The Plan of Management that is on exhibition authorises the purpose and conditions of hire of the ground and lists those locations able to be used as Sportsgrounds. It is proposed that these four be added to the current list.

The purpose of adding these four additional fields is to provide the opportunity for them to be developed and allocated for competitive sport should the need arise. Community sport is increasing in popularity and creating increased demand on existing sportsgrounds in both new and established areas. These four playing field locations have been identified as being capable and suitable for active sport to help meet this demand.

Any improvements required such as capital embellishment and ongoing maintenance resulting from upgraded facilities within the identified reserves would be considered in future reports and budget reviews.

Two existing fields are also proposed to be included in the list of Exemptions to Alcohol Prohibitions:

  • Dilkera Road Reserve
  • Holland Road Reserve

The report also proposes changes to wet weather closure of field processes to allow for ground closure at the discretion of sports clubs.

Public Exhibition Period: Tuesday 9 June 2015 – Tuesday 21 July 2015

The draft Plan can be viewed in the attachments to this page or at Council’s Customer Service Centre at 3 Columbia Court, Baulkham Hills or at any of Council’s Shire libraries.

Submission Deadline: Tuesday 21 July 2015

Enquiries: Gaynor Corfield Senior Co-ordinator Community Projects and Engagement: 9843 0361.

Submissions have now closed.