By Stephanie Hua
Green Square residents have attacked the area’s nightmarish traffic conditions as the redevelopment of the area moves forward.
“Driving has become a nightmare,” said resident Barbara Rysenbry.
“The roads are [so] congested with cars and buses that it has made getting home from work so difficult. Sometimes I end up catching a taxi home because the buses are so full they don’t allow anymore people on board,” she said.
The area of Green Square consists of Zetland, Beaconsfield, Waterloo and parts of Rosebery and Alexandria in Sydney’s south. Led by the City of Sydney, Green Square has started work on an $8 billion project to transform the area into a sustainable urban environment.
Senior Projects Manager for City of Sydney Lauren Flaherty said the city has begun these new infrastructure developments to meeting housing demands to “transform a once industrial site to a residential area”.
Construction includes a new town centre, a stormwater drain project, apartment blocks, a number of local parks and an aquatic centre among others.
According to the 2011 Census, the population of Green Square was over 13,000, but over the next 15 years the area and its surrounding suburbs are set to become the densest precinct in Australia. When development is fully completed after 2030, the total population is expected to reach 53, 000.
To account for the fast growing population, the City of Sydney has proposed more buses and a light rail system but residents say that additional buses will not solve the issue.
“There is no point in adding more buses. They will just continue to sit in gridlock traffic along with all the other buses and cars. Transportation is already so bad. With more people coming to the area, it’s just going to get worse”, said resident Marco Quivaqui.
“The council and the state government are disconnected. There has been zero investment into public transport and it shows because transport in the area is terrible”, he said.
But these concerns have not gone unheard. City Planner Dustin Moore said there had been an active conversation between the City of Sydney and the state government.
“We are trying to make contact with the state government but we can only influence decision. Nothing is set in stone,” he said.
“In response to transportation issues, we are encouraging residents to walk and ride bicycles instead of using their cars. We have also made efforts to allow only one car spot per household which people have taken quite well”.
Addressing residents of Green Square at last week’s council organised ‘Have Your Say Day’, Lord Mayor Clover Moore said she understood residents’ transport concerns.
“The transportation in Green Square is appalling and totally unacceptable”, she said.
She called for the support of the community to help lobby the state government into enacting the City of Sydney’s transport proposals.