St George Stadium move under Cooks Cove


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Dilapidated St George Stadium would be demolished and a new stadium plus extra playing fields developed on land that is at present part of the Kogarah Golf Club course under new plans for the Cooks Cove project.

A new clubhouse for the privately-owned golf club would be built adjacent to where the stadium now stands in Barton Park, a report to club members stated.
Stadium entry

Stadium entry

The plans reignited anger among many residents about community owned land being handed over for private development.

The report said the golf club’s development partner, John Boyd Properties, would replace St George Stadium on an alternative site.

It would be built to Football NSW Premier League standards, have a FIFA approved synthetic surface, and there would be three associated training fields.
Opposed: Gerard McLaughlin, a long-time critic of the project, as also highlighted illegal dumping on the site. Picture: Jane Dyson

Opposed: Gerard McLaughlin, a long-time critic of the project, as also highlighted illegal dumping on the site. Picture: Jane Dyson

The report said the facilities would be to the north of the present stadium on existing golf course land, although the exact location had yet to be resolved.

It is 12 years since Kogarah Golf Club unveiled its initial vision for the Cooks Cove project with strong support from the state government and Rockdale Council.

The plans were for the golf to club relocate south to make way for a technology park and, while Barton Park and Riverine Park would be swallowed up, the stadium would not have been affected.

The global financial crisis brought the project to a stop and moves to revive it were hampered by the WestConnex motorway project, including the need to use part of the golf course for a tunneling site.

Late last year, the state government agreed to a request by Rockdale Council to consider making the area a Priority Precinct, comprising a mix of apartment blocks, commercial development and public open space.

Under the original plans, the golf club would have been given ownership of land equivalent to what it was vacating. However, the new plans would see the club surrender ownership and receive only a 99-year lease of its new site.

The club said it owned only about half of the existing golf course land, and the balance was occupied under lease or licence from the council, Sydney Water, Roads and Maritime Services and Sydney Airport.

“Members will be very aware the fears held by successive Boards have now been realised with the impending widening of Marsh Street and the occupation of the course for between four and six years during construction of the WestConnex roadway,” the report said.

Residents expressed their anger at the plans on the Rockdale Residents Unite Facebook page.

Kyeemagh resident Gerard McLaughlin, a long-time critic of the project who has also highlighted illegal dumping on the site, wrote: “If your kids play on any of the fields in Barton Park or you attend St George Stadium, say goodbye to all of it. Your kids can play golf if you have got the money.”

Anna de Mari said the council had told her it could take about eight months to get a response on the Priority Precinct request. She had been told it was possible Cooks Cove, Arncliffe and Banksia could be combined into “a super precinct”, but that was up to the planning department.

Germana Eckert said the project was “shrouded in secrecy”.

Source The Leader