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The Leichhardt Council has found the new development proposal of the site of the former Balmain Tiger Leagues Club unacceptable.

Minutes of the council meeting on June 5 indicate that the new proposal will add extra traffic pressure to the roads of the area and will have negative impact on local businesses.

David Anderson, president of the Rozelle Residents Action Group, believes there is no improvement in the new proposal from the old one.

“They (Rozelle Village) have made a number of assertions,” he says. “They’ve made assertions regarding the environmental sustainability of this. It’s not guaranteed in supporting a development that has a better environmental sustainability.”

Mr Anderson has also referred the Inner West Independent of a letter from the Roads and Maritime Services detailing the projected traffic issues that will arise from the development.

Ian Wright, Managing Director of Rozelle Village, says that there were issues with the way the Council was assessing the proposal during the meeting.

“They have paid consultants to criticise the development, it was clear,” he says. “Unfortunately, the consultants had a total lack of understanding of the proposal.”

“Their design review penalist has had no experience in high rise buildings, and completely ignored the environmental credentials to this development.”

Mr Wright also said the council meeting only lightly touched on a peer review panel, which gave their support for the design. The panel consists of Helen Lochhead, the Assistant Government Architect, and three gold metal architects.

Local supporters of Wests Tigers who oppose to the development have launched a campaign called Tigers against Towers in the meeting.

“There are thousands of local people, like myself, who desperately want to see the club returned, but we’re not ready to have it come back in the form of a skyscraper,” says Leichhardt Councillor Darcy Byrne.
“The club has the right to return to the site now owned by Rozelle Village,” he says. “There’s no reason that the develop needs to be 32 stories in height.”
He also says there are members of the club who are not happy with the fact that the club is advocating for the development.

“The club is using its resources – through its website, through junior ruby league, through promotion at Tigers games to encourage people to support this development. But they’re not actually revealing to people what the development contains.”

The Rozelle Residents Action Group is planning to hold a rally on June 16 in opposition to the development.

By Jeff Li