Residents of Kings Cross, Potts Point, Elizabeth Bay, Rushcutters Bay and Woolloomooloo
The following letter by 2011RA member Patrick McGrath was published in the Wentworth Courier 4th April 2012
The City of Sydney “2030 in Your Village” Forum held in Kings Cross last Tuesday had more spin than Linda Blair’s head in The Exorcist. There were about 200 residents at about 20 tables (it was packed) and many others standing; of the 10 local residents at my table, all strangers to me, 6 had come because they were concerned about the saturation of licensed premises and the resultant impact on basic residential amenity like peace and quiet, or the wider social costs of engaging multiple levels of police, emergency services, hospital, ambulance and other medical workers to keep this ‘vibrant’ local economy bouncing along. They were rightly worried about where this is going, and from the feedback at the meeting it now appears to be heading straight down MacLeay St and its side-streets, because Darlinghurst Rd is full to bursting and simply cant fit any more drunks on its footpaths.
While Lord Mayor Clover Moore and her team sang the praises of roundabouts, garden plantings and art installations, and lauded the revenue raised from her ‘vibrant’ late night binge-drinking economy, outside a suburb heaves (literally) with drunks every weekend. To be fair I should note that the flower installations on the William St overpass are popular – but as late-night urinals and empty bottle receptacles. And if it’s splashes of local colour the Mayor is after, she need look no further than the puddles of puke that dot Earl Place each morning.
I feel sorry for the residents I met that night, mostly from the tranquil ‘Paris’ end of Potts Point who up until now have rightly enjoyed their peace and quiet. They have no idea of what is spreading their way, overflowing from the Darlinghurst Rd strip and now fueled by the new ‘Small Bar’ syndrome. My advice? Invest in some industrial-strength earplugs, get a good deadlock on your door, strong security for your building, and don’t even think about going outside after midnight. Thanks for ‘revitalising’ our village Lord Mayor, but forgive me if I’m currently less focussed on the year 2030, and more worried about what’s happening in my back lane at 02.30 tomorrow morning.