President’s Report 2009

Ewingsdale Community Association

President’s Report

2008 – 2009

The Ewingsdale Community has had a productive and successful year.

The most significant long-term development for the EC has been the development of our website, http://www.ewingsdale.org.au.  This is entirely the work of our member Ian Pick and we are very grateful to him.  We hope everyone will have a look at the website and will find it useful.

The Ewingsdale Hall has been another area of great progress and success.  This year we have a new lawn, driveway, path, and side steps.  Our thanks to Di Johnstone for her hard work in taking care of the Hall and managing the many worthwhile events which take place in it, and which give our association a good income.

I would also like to thank my associates on the executive.  Bernard Grinberg, the vice-president, has kept us informed of many issues affecting our community and has worked hard in managing them.  Andrew Baldwin, the treasurer, has kept careful records of our finances, especially those dealing with the Hall, which under his and Di Johnstone’s care has become in effect a very successful business.

Mr Bob Higgins of the RTA, along with two of his associates, met with about 40 members at our AGM on 5 May 2008.  Mr. Higgins presented plans for the so-called highway upgrade to take place from the current Byron Bay interchange south through St Helena Hill and all downhill from there.  The members were pleased to note that a substantial earth barrier will shield Ewingsdale from highway noise for much of the way, but concerns were voiced about the lack of sound barriers up near the tunnel.  Another concern was the need for an interchange near Bangalow, so that northbound traffic from Lismore would not need to use the existing road and the Byron Bay interchange.  The meeting was lively and productive.

The  Ewingsdale Hall completed this year 100 years since its construction in 1908.  Centenary celebrations were held in September and a fine DVD to commemorate this event was produced by Elisabeth Andel.

In January the EC President and Vice-President met with three staff members of Byron Shire Council:  Graeme Faulkner, the General Manager; Ray Darney, the Director of Planning; and Phil Holloway, the Director of Asset Managment Services.  We discussed the following issues:

  1. Proposed developments in Quarry Lane and William Flick Lane.
  1. Construction of a Bike Lane from McGettigan’s Lane to the BP Ozigo. Work on this has started with a 200 m section starting at McGettigan’s Lane.
  1. Additional lighting at the corner of McGettigan’s Lane and Ewingsdale Road. Not much progress on this one because of cost (latest quote is $100,000).
  1. Reduction of speed limit on Ewingsdale Road at the McGettigan’s corner toward the highway interchange. In the past the EC has succeeded in lowering the speed limit on Ewingsdale Road from 100 to 80, but the corner area is still unsafe.
  1. Hospital planning. We met with Ray Darney a year earlier to secure a green buffer zone behind the proposed hospital.  He was optimistic then and still feels the same way.
  1. Road verge maintenance — a perpetual issue, but we put in our usual appeal for more mowing along the roads and in the park near the corner of Plantation and Parkway.

The rock group Parkway Drive are doing very well, and so are we, since Council has recently replaced the street signs souvenired by fans.  Let’s hope these signs last awhile.

With the support of our residents, the EC will continue to protect and nurture our beautiful area.

Thank you for all your support.

On behalf of the Ewingsdale Community members,

Charles MacFarland, President

7 May 2009