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Save Our Sydney Suburbs (NSW) Inc.
News Release end May 2003

"Successes in the Media Battle"

Hi Members

There has been no let up in our battle for the hearts and minds of the public and the signs are encouraging.


1. In Friday's Sydney Morning Herald (23 May) we managed to get this letter published:

Policy leads to pollution

Your article "River sleuth despairs as sewage pours into bay", Herald 22 May describes plastic bags, soft drink cans and "lumps of faeces as big as golf balls" floating in the Georges River resulting from our recent rain spell. The magnitude of this pollution is a direct consequence of the State Government's high density policies.

The stormwater drains and the sewers of our suburbs were designed for the original population numbers and building structures. Under its urban consolidation policy the Carr Government is forcing hugely increased population densities into these suburbs without improving the infrastructure. The sewers cannot cope with the increased number of people and have a much reduced safety factor. Add to this the vanished gardens that are now covered with tiles, bitumen and concrete. There is now much less open ground to absorb rainwater. Some of this rainwater then rushes into creeks carrying pollution with it. Some enters the overloaded sewers and causes them to overflow.

Yet the Government keeps on telling us that their high-density policies are resulting in a more sustainable city.

Tony Recsei
Warrawee May 22


2. This week the Herald is running a series on apartment living. In today's paper (29 May) we got this one in:

Compact city equals more cars, not buses

Bruce Judd claims that compact cities are more ecologically sustainable due to increased use of public transport ("How apartment living grew up", Herald 28 May).
The use of public transport just cannot be expected to meet the requirements of all the trips people have to make. This is exemplified in a city much admired by compact city proponents. The planning authorities in Portland, Oregon admit that in spite of all efforts, the use of public transport there will only increase from the current 3% to 6% of people’s journeys. Car traffic though, will increase from 4 million to a massive 7 million daily trips.

More of something in a constrained space increases crowding. Portland’s traffic congestion is already horrendous - approaching that of New York. This congestion increases air pollution including fine particulates that are extremely carcinogenic.

It is high time that objective fact-based engineering replaces the emotional ideology driving our city planners.

Tony Recsei
Warrawee, May 28


Over the last few days Alan Jones on Radio 2GB has been discussing the subject in his talk-back sessions.

I managed to speak to Alan on air this morning (29 May) just before the 6.30 am news. I suggested that high-rise should not be retrofitted onto suburbs originally designed for low-density living. This just overloads the infrastructure such as the sewers and roads. Alan countered by saying the people have to be housed somewhere. I suggested the creation of satellite cities should be considered. Alan said that we already have them in e.g. Liverpool. I replied that Liverpool is not a satellite city. Such cities should be properly designed, each with a central district with an adequately designed internal road and transport system and with high-speed transport linking such a city with other satellite cities and the main city of Sydney. Alan indicated he would look into these possibilities.



The signs are there that gradually people are listening.

If you get an idea please consider phoning the radio stations or writing a short letter to the papers. The people's view must be listened to eventually.

Tony Recsei
Save Our Suburbs (SOS)

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