After an extensive consultation process, the proposal to resurface Dulwich Hill’s Arlington Oval with synthetic grass has been rejected by Marrickville Council.
Greens Councillor Marika Kontellis said the proposal would have represented a poor investment. “We would have had to borrow money to implement it at a time when we think we could better spend the money elsewhere,” she said.
The cost of installing the artificial turf was put at $850,000, plus a further $17,000 in annual maintenance and $420,000 to resurface the ground every seven to 10 years.
Questions were also raised during the consultation process about environmental, social and health impacts, including the potential of unsafe chemicals leaching from the artificial surface into the ground below.
But the decision was not universally popular. Dulwich Hill SC trains at Arlington Oval, and the club’s Football Manager, John Ferreira, said the club was disappointed with the outcome.
“We’re struggling – we’re now without a training ground,” he said. “We train at Tempe, as Mahoney [Oval] has been destroyed. We’ve been pushed over to Mackey Park, which is a mess as well. We have not one suitable training ground and training [for the new season] starts in January.”