With summer looming, it’s now been over eighteen months since the world first experienced COVID-19. While it’s been a tough year for so many, I am excited to say The Hills Shire is leading the way in COVID vaccinations, and I sincerely hope that by the time you receive this issue, you are all enjoying a lot more freedom and we can all celebrate and enjoy Christmas and the New Year with family and friends.
After nearly four years, the highlight of this newsletter and my term on council is that The Hills Shire Council has received final approval from the NSW Government and is now gazetted to increase secondary dwellings in RU1 primary production, RU2 rural landscape and RU6 transitional lands.
This is an excellent outcome for the residents in these rural zones who can now build an appropriate secondary dwelling that will give them many options, and at the same time give older residents the opportunity to stay on their property.
I would like to sincerely thank The Member for Hawkesbury and previous North Ward Councillor Robyn Preston MP who had for many years championed for a change to secondary dwellings in our RU1, RU2 and RU6 zones.
In 2018, Robyn moved and I seconded the motion in the chamber to amend secondary dwellings from 60sqm to 110sqm, excluding parking or 20% of the total floor area of the principal dwelling, whichever is greater. I would also like to thank my fellow Councillors who unanimously supported this motion.
While I acknowledge critical infrastructure upgrades and improvements have been slow in coming, North Ward continues to change on a daily, weekly and monthly basis. Many of the new roads, infrastructure improvements, parks, roundabouts, pedestrian refuge islands, sporting fields and open spaces are coming to fruition, which is very exciting for the thousands of new residents we will welcome to North Ward in 2022.
See below some of the new and exciting outcomes that have happened and upgrades that are still planned for North Ward over the coming weeks and months:
- During September/October, Council placed on exhibition Stage 2 of Caddies Creek Sports Complex, which will contain four additional football fields, a football centre of excellence and new car park.
- As well as this, the State Government is creating some new and additional recreational space adjacent to Caddies Creek Sports Complex. This was also on exhibition during September and called for resident feedback on what they would like to see.
- Construction is well underway at four stormwater management basins in North Kellyville supporting the following reserves: Barry Road, Indwarra Avenue, Landsdowne Road and McMillian Circuit Reserves. These basins will help support stormwater flow and water quality and should be completed by December 2021.
- The resurfacing of four tennis courts at Les Shore Reserve is in full swing and will be completed when this magazine goes to print. The highlight of this project is the courts will be multi-purpose and allow for basketball and netball.
- The Hezlett Road upgrade should be completed when this edition goes to print, allowing for no major holdups such as weather and potential COVID lockdowns.
- Council has agreed to alter parking restrictions after The Friends of Glenhaven made representations to improve the sight distances. These alterations will make it safer for residents leaving Old Northern Road turning onto Glenhaven Road, which is a great result for local residents.
- The construction of Equinox Reserve in Box Hill is in full swing and should be ready to open sometime in December 2021. The reserve will feature a nature themed playground, turfed kick-about area, basketball shooting circle, picnic area, park furniture and concrete pathways.
- Submissions have been called for the New Line Road upgrade. This upgrade is long overdue and we will fight hard to get the necessary support for all those residents in Dural, Middle Dural, Annangrove, Kenthurst, Glenorie and more who are impacted every single day in gridlocked traffic.
- Council was awarded $700 000 as part of the Black Spot Funding program. It will be utilised to implement the long overdue roundabout at the intersection of Edwards and Annangrove Road in Box Hill.
- A pedestrian refuge island has been completed on Curtis Road in North Kellyville between Hipwell and Stynes Avenue. The island will improve long overdue pedestrian safety.
- Council has agreed to a new dog off-leash area that will be built at Indwarra Avenue Reserve and should be completed during the 2022/2023 financial year, which is great news for the residents of North Kellyville.
While our election has been deferred until 4th December, I will continue to work hard to bring our infrastructure up to speed to support the rate of new development, noting that Council has no appetite for debt, and that any infrastructure improvements are paid for by developer contributions.
I will continue to advocate and support the residents of North Ward and again I would like to publicly acknowledge the excellent work our hard-working progress associations do in supporting their local communities, such as the Box Hill/Nelson, Annangrove, Friends of Glenhaven, Glenorie and North Kellyville Advocacy Progress Groups.
In closing, may this Christmas season bring you closer to all those you treasure in your heart and that you all stay safe. I sincerely hope that over 85% of our residents are double jabbed, which means we can all have a very merry and safe Christmas and a very happy and safe New Year.