Category Archives: Uncategorized

The Alexandria Hotel is re-opening!

Good news! The Alexandria Hotel is soon to re-open! While this has probably been apparent to locals watching the recent activity on site, it’s great to now have official confirmation from Merivale, the owners.

It was back in 2015 when The Alex was sold to a property developer who lodged a Development Application to demolish it and build 28 apartments. A concerted campaign by locals to save this historic hotel from the wrecking ball resulted in more than 500 written objections and thousands of signatures on a petition to City of Sydney council. The application was refused and an interim heritage order was placed on the hotel.

Of course it didn’t stop there – the developers took the matter to the Land & Environment Court and over 100 people turned up to the hearing to object. In the face of such overwhelming community opposition, the developers withdrew the proposal. Over the next year they attempted several compromise proposals, including one which would have had a 7 story apartment building in the rear yard of the hotel! Continued community and council pressure led them to give up and sell the hotel to Merivale.

This has definitely been a great example of people power, but it’s been a somewhat bittersweet victory to date – the hotel was saved from the wrecking ball, but has sat idle due to logistical difficulties.

But that’s all about to change! Merivale has told us they are excited to reopen the hotel as “Backyard at the Alex”. The first stage of the re-opening will be a vibrant outdoor space to allow the ongoing restoration of the interior to continue.

The focus is on the return of the community hub that we fought to retain, rather than the destination venue that might have been expected from Merivale. Taking inspiration from a classic backyard, the hotel will be a family and dog friendly outdoor space where locals can socialise over great food and drinks in a fun, lively setting. The outdoor viewing screen will once again be available to cheer on the Sydney Swans and for other sporting events.

Backyard at The Alex will play host to rotating food trucks serving dishes from some of Sydney’s much loved food operators. The first two to take up residency will be Wholly Schnit serving a range of handmade chicken schnitzels and sides, and Firepop, specialising in Yakitori style bamboo skewers. Merivale will also be serving their pub favourites from a popup kitchen.

The opening hours will be:
○ Monday: CLOSED
○ Tuesday: CLOSED
○ Wednesday: 1200-0000
○ Thursday: 1200-0000
○ Friday: 1200-0000
○ Saturday: 1200-0000
○ Sunday: 1200-2200

The big question is WHEN? The only answer we can currently give you is SOON. As in quite soon. Stay tuned for another update when the opening date is announced.

Thank you all for your support over the last 6 years, and we hope to see you back at The Alex soon!

Build a Bridge

ARAG, REDWatch and Friends of Erskineville are running a new campaign: to build a bridge from Carriageworks to South Eveleigh. This project has been talked about for decades and now is the time to get it done.

If this is something you’d like to see, please sign the petition!

https://actionnetwork.org/letters/build-a-bridge/

Covid Vaccine Update

We’ve been fairly lucky in Alexandria, we’ve had very few Covid cases so far.

But just in case you haven’t quite gotten around to getting your vaccination yet, a reminder that we’ve had a bit of spike in cases lately – there’s currently some 36 active cases in postcode 2015 (Alexandria, Beaconsfield, Eveleigh) and there’s another 130 active cases in postcodes 2016 and 2017 (Redfern, Waterloo, Zetland).

There’s plenty of places near us we can get vaccinated today, currently including:

  • My Health South Eveleigh
  • Erskineville Doctors
  • Alice St General Practice
  • CityDoc Medical Centre (opposite Redfern Station)
  • Erskineville Chemist
  • Fountain Street Chemist
  • Quite a lot of other chemists

There’s lots of websites that will help find a place.

One of the better ones is https://covid19nearme.com.au :

https://covid19nearme.com.au/state/nsw/vaccination/clinic/9f2896a1-2e70-440b-fb2e-b916b7a0b579

Lord Mayor’s Roundtable

The following exchange was between ARAG and Lord Mayor Clover Moore post the recent Lord Mayor’s Roundtable.

Lord Mayor
Thank you for inviting me to participate in the Community Group Round Table. I am sorry that I was unable to stay for the entire meeting, unfortunately I had a work meeting that I had to attend.

Continue reading

May meeting – Traffic Study, Euston/McEvoy Road Expansion – Wednesday 13-5

This month’s meeting will again be virtual.
On the agenda:
  • The results of the consultation for the traffic study
  • A2MP Alexandria to Moore Park Road Expansion (Euston Road, McEvoy St, etc)
We are expecting Lord Mayor Clover Moore to be in (virtual) attendance.
The meeting will be Wednesday 13 May. 
We’ll aim to start at 7pm
The link for the meeting is:
Dial in is available. +61 2 8015 6011
Meeting ID: 849 0736 5583
Password: 2015
One tap mobile:
+61731853730,,84907365583#,,1#,2015#

+61861193900,,84907365583#,,1#,2015#

The meeting has a limit of 100 people. We don’t expect to reach it, but just letting you know, just in case it happens.

Vale Robyn Kemmis

The Alexandria Residents’ Action Group (ARAG) and residents of Alexandria are saddened by the news of the unexpected passing of Robyn Kemmis, Deputy Lord Mayor and a great friend of ARAG.

ARAG is a relatively new residents’ group and in our short time since formation Robyn has offered quiet counsel and unqualified support for us and the issues that affect Alexandria. Robyn always was accessible, knowledgeable and professional in her interactions with ARAG.

We always have been impressed by Robyn’s performance on Council – her calm and considered presentation of issues and representation of constituents’ concerns. Continue reading

Last drinks at the Alex (for a while, anyway)

The Alexandria Hotel closes its doors today, but the fight to save it goes on. A lot of local residents will be gathering, and we hope to see you there.

AH_Farewell.jpg

The building itself may yet be saved; Continue reading

M5 East Press Release

http://www.arag.org.au info@arag.org.au
Media Release – 01 Deceember 2015

WestCONnex M5 Interchange is a Crown of Thorns

Residents in Alexandria were horrified to see the plans for the M5 and the St Peters Interchange with its ‘Crown of Thorns’ concrete freeway arching over a ‘brand new park’ which given its close proximity to an unfiltered, filthy exhaust stack, doesn’t make it somewhere anyone will want to be.

Ben Aveling, Co-Convenor of the Alexandria Residents Action Group is dismayed at the spin and misinformation contained in the latest information release.
He said “it just beggars belief that anyone thinks that this is a good result for the people using the M5, let alone the people at the end of the road who will be left to deal with the massive increase in traffic.

There is no mention of the $26 daily tolls that people will have to pay, and no mention of reduced travel times over the whole journey. It’s just smoke stacks and mirrors.”

A closer inspection of the map reveals some other failings of the proposal:
• All traffic that needs to go into the city will need to find its way through McEvoy Streets, Mitchell Road and King Street, and this situation won’t improve if the M5 to M4 tunnel (which is unfunded) ever gets built. The only way into the city is via those three streets.
• 100,000 more cars a day are supposed to be using the M5 extension. This isn’t enough to make the toll road pay, but where are all the cars going to go? Anyone who has driven down those already crowded roads knows more traffic means slower travel times and more congestion.
• One of the off-ramps joins Gardeners Road which is already at capacity. Given that Gardeners Road goes from three lanes down to one after Botany Road, we are now stack filling an existing car park.

Even more laughable are the claims made in the four page brochure on the ‘New M5 – St Peters interchange’:
• ‘Returning local streets to local residents by removing through traffic and fixing local bottlenecks’. Unless WestCONnex has found a way to make 100,000+ cars a day evaporate, there is no evidence that WestCONnex has removed traffic – rather it has massively increased it, and created nightmare bottlenecks
• ‘Up to 49% reduction in travel time’ but if you read the small print, this only applies up to the King Georges Road interchange, so bad luck if you are using WestCONnex to get into the city!

“WestCONnex is a bad idea for Sydney. It puts roads ahead of public transport.

It comes at the cost of spending on schools, hospitals and other infrastructure and it creates more problems than it solves.” Ben Aveling said.

“We know it’s not a good deal. The Auditor General’s review of the Business Case back in December 2014 was damning. The Government won’t release the Business Case and that speaks volumes.”

We call on the government to halt all work on the M4 and M5, stop letting tenders and acquiring homes and businesses and release the business case.

Nothing less is satisfactory.”

For more information contact: Ben Aveling, Alexandria Residents Action Group 0407 228 240

The “Crown of Thorns” Interchange, just south of Sydney Park

Interchange

The EIS for the M5 East, thousands of pages of spin, numbers, graphs and diagrams, much of which has no basis in fact, now has been released – just in time for Christmas – with limited time for the public to read, assess, analyse and submit their comments to the government.

It is very cynical of the government to release such important documents over the Christmas holiday period.

Residents can get more information by visiting m5eis.org where community members from across Sydney will be posting their analyses and draft submissions for you to assess in submitting your objections to this wasteful road project. Visit the site regularly, as information will be upgraded regularly.

Transport and Traffic Forum, Wednesday the 14th

The next ARAG meeting will a be forum on Transport and Traffic.

This will be an opportunity to hear from, and ask questions of representatives from:

  • Transport for NSW
  • City of Sydney
  • EcoTransit

The forum will be at:
7pm, Wednesday 14th October
Alexandria Town Hall, Garden St

Hope to see you there

Ashmore Estate Development – ARAG’s Talking Points for Objections to the DA

ARAG has prepared a list of items that residents might like to consider when preparing their objection to the Ashmore Estate development proposal.

Briefly, the proposal is for 1,400 – 1,600 units and an increase in population of around 6,300. That effectively DOUBLES the population of BOTH Alexandria and Erskineville.

Download this PDF ARAG Ashmore Estate Objection Template to assess the issues.

Download this version in WORD format: ARAG Ashmore Estate Objection Template.