27 February 2015

Descendants of the 27th Battalion

The City of Unley is looking for descendants of soldiers who fought with the 27th Battalion in the First World War. Unley has an historic connection with the 27th Battalion and we would like to invite those descendants to our events in May 2015 as part of the ANZAC Centenary. Please contact pobox1@unley.sa.gov.au or phone 08 8372 5111. Or contact us via our Facebook page: 27th Battalion Descendants - WW1

Travel Talk: French

  • When: Thursday, 5 March 2015 - 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM
    Where: Unley Libraries at Goodwood Library

    Are you travelling to France or thinking about it? Join our 4 week course and learn the basics in language, places to go and how to get around.

    Thursdays 5 - 26 March, 4 - 6pm
    Goodwood Library
    Cost $5, payable at the first session.
    Light refreshments provided.
    Bookings essential, ph 8372 5100 or 8372 5166, or book online 

26 February 2015

Wildlife box update for 201

Unley has a number of strategically placed Wildlife Boxes at various locations within the City to support the breeding and habitat survival of our local fauna. Members have previously been advised in relation to the usage of these boxes.
A total of 28 Artificial Hollows/Boxes were installed in June 2009. They were erected in Ridge and Heywood Parks, with a single box installed on Windsor St. Over the years Council has built up the number of boxes to where we now have close to 100 located across all part of the City.
Each year, as part of this environmental initiative, Council is provided with a report on the outcomes, success or otherwise of fauna use. As part of this monitoring process, each box is assessed for any changes that have taken place and to determine whether possible maintenance issues have arisen. This process is required to ensure that the wildlife value of the boxes are maintained and that public safety is observed.
Some interesting facts include:
·         2014 has been the most successful year to date for wildlife occupation and breeding.
·         Over 60% of the wildlife boxes were used for breeding or denning and 94% were used by a range of the target vertebrate species.
·         One new animal group was recorded during 2014 - microbats, with a single specimen observed in a bat box at Heywood Park.

Full Council Feb 23rd 2015

The Agenda looked to have little controversy this month. Items  discussed include:

  • A petition regarding parking in Walter St:residents are calling for the removal of parking restrictions. This will now be investigated by staff.
  • Boffa Lane ticket machine; the conditions of the current trial  have been challenged by people who have been issued with fines. It is suggested that instead of free parking for 3 hours and then being able to be fined if the car is not moved that a fee must be set. It is suggested at 20c/hour for the remainder of the trial. PASSED but at $1  for 3 hours. This will be the first paid parking in Unley and may set a precedent for others. Hopefully, this will make a park easier to get and work toward the revitalisation of KWR and not against it.
  • Joint Use Agreement with Unley PS regarding community use of the oval and playground; This is a renewal of an existing and long standing agreement.PASSED
  • Broughton Art Society Funding: this recommends that funding of $5,000 per year for the next 3 years be budgeted by Council. The Society generally applies for grant funding on an adhoc basis and receives, on average, more than this each year from Council.PASED
  • Review of Dog Registration Fees (not cats): dog registration fees will rise to $70 before rebates and concessions are applied and then be increased to $85 over the next 3 years. As most dogs are eligible for a concession most people will not pay this amount. PASSED
  • Pensioner Concessions on rates: the lack of  state government funding for pensioner concessions is now starting to bite. All Councils are putting the pressure back onto the state government to make good their share.This could see some rate payments increasing 20%.PASSED
  • Appointment of Independent Members to the Development Assessment Panel; CONFIDENTIAL

22 February 2015

What are the easements worth? Brown Hill Creek

As the Councils gear up to go to residents to ask their opinion on the Brown Hill Creek flood mitigation solutions the debate heats up as well. Number one concern is that the state government has no money and has indicated this, this leaves the affordability of any works in doubt.
Secondly the cost of easements which were  calculated by the investigation team to be about $1.6 million are now estimated to be in the order of $8 to $16 million. This is before any legal fees are added to the amounts. This is starting to make a dam seem like a cost effective solution if it is still affordable at all.

Ward briefing Feb 19th 2015

This meeting is held every second month and is a great forum to raise your concerns and for staff to tell us what they have been doing and propose to do in Clarence Park Ward. The majority of discussion this time revolved around;
  • Tree watering and replacement in Cromer Pde, Arundel Ave and Devon St: as many of yoyu are aware the maintenance of the plantings was a responsibility of the contractor. Regular weekly watering is now occurring and all dead plants will be replaced. Next summer they will become the responsibility of Council.
  • Streetscape renewal for Ormonde Ave; Council have identified Ormonde Ave street trees in need of renewal. Residents will be contacted in the near future, followed up by a street meeting to discuss options. The golden rain trees have been there for many years and many are in a very poor state of health. It will be important to express your views if you hold strong ones either way.
  • How the $200,000 grant for East Ave will be spent ?: this will see the southern end resurfaced and the entrance ways from side streets have the bike lanes area painted green.
  • The paving of Hammond Ave and Birkdale Ave footpaths: Hammon Ave has commenced and both sides of Birkdale Ave will follow.
  • Traffic safety near the new cafes: This will be investigated by staff.
  • Tree pruning by SA Power Networks: all of Unley streets have been assessed by SAPN over the last few weeks and trees/streets identified for pruning. Residents will receive letters shortly. Arborists on staff will be advising contractors where possible.
    What about a tree or two here?
  • Pedestrian safety on the Greenways shared use path; safety in this area will be further investigated by staff. It seems to me that bikes and people should be travelling in opposite directions.
  • The piece of land made available by DPTI between Arundel Ave and Victoria St; Hopefully, some planting and mulching will occur soon. I would like to see a couple a trees that have potential to become significant planted to start toward replacing those removed in recent times.
  • The repainting of the tram overpass;this work will now be completed by DPTI but it will be large blocks of colour that can be easily painted over when graffiti attacks occur.
  • Offset planting to replace the trees lost due to the Goodwood Junction project: please continue to identify sites that you think are suitable, suggestion put forward this week was for the barren carpark next to the tram overpass.

20 February 2015

Project Wild Thing: promoting children's [play

The film’s premise is promoting outdoor play for children. For more information, visit – http://projectwildthing.com/

Please save the date in your diary and share with your networks. 

15 February 2015

Safety concerns at some local intersections

Recently I have received comments or concerns about the following intersections;

  • Maple Ave and Leader St: the concern is that  vehicle waiting the turn right into Maple Ave (when travelling west on Leader St) may hold up other vehicles to the extent that they are queuing across the railway line. This concern was discussed during the construction of the Goodwood Junction and at the time thought to be unnecessary. Changes will be implemented soon that will prevent this movement.
  • Lyons Pde and Victoria St: the traffic management device at this location is being regularly ignored by some and, as such, causing difficulties for others
  • Mills St and East Ave; this concern is that the increased popularity of the cafe, Sublime, is causing people to park too close to the intersection which is then interfering with the necessary line of site to allow for safe entry and exit to Mills St.

Safety Concerns at Millswood station

After at least on near miss at Millswood station this week DPTI will undertake an independent review  of the crossing points to ascertain if any improvements are needed. DPTI were quick to react to an email from a concerned resident who witnessed the incident.

11 February 2015

Unley Central Development

The article in this week's Eastern Courier lacks a little clarity. It certainly true that Unley Councillors are discussing 11 storey development in the central area (Shopping Centre), what the author didn't tell you is that is already zoned for 14 storeys and has been for at least 20 years. Not one application has been received during this time for such a development.
One of the biggest complaints from Black Forest residents during last year's consultation regarding high rise buildings in that suburb was 'why us, surely this would be better on Unley Rd'. No decisions are ever made without extensive consultation and this one will be no different.
However, the government can force increased density in Unley and will decide themselves where it will be if Council don't.

10 February 2015

How does one rate work?

I could answer, I have no idea.
Most councils calculate the rates on cents in the dollar on the Valuer General's valuation of a property. The number of cents is calculated so that the final amount is the amount of money that is needed to manage the council for the next 12 months. So the more valuable your property the more you pay. But it is also true that the more expensive the houses the lower the rate in the dollar. So if you live in Salisbury and have a $500,000 house you would be paying much more than on the same amount on Unley. How then does one rate work? If a uniform rate in the dollar was charged across the entire city the Unley residents would be paying much higher rates. I don't think any residents would be very happy with this outcome. So how does it work? I still have no idea but is someone wants to let me know feel free to comment.

Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan to be funded by DPTI

In early 2014, Council applied for a DPTI (proactive Black Spot funding) grant to review City of Unley Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan. Due to identified budget savings within the organisation DPTI  have now offered to pay for the above plan. This will also include an  an audit of Unley’s cycling transport routes considering both safety and utility as a transport corridor. The audit will consider priority when cycling transport routes cross garage entrances or dead end streets.
Council will need to contribute $15,000.

09 February 2015

A great weekend at the pool

The Swimming Centre had a safe and successful weekend. The staff did an outstanding job, I have been pleased to received several positive comments on their conduct and commitment to the weekends activities.

A total of 2,547 people attended the centre from  Friday to Sunday.

The first ‘Free Friday’ session attracted an impressive 555 people after 4:30pm to close of business (914 for the entire day). The income received in the kiosk during the trial was $623.00 with the crowd being made up of a good mix of youth, seniors and families. 293 Adults, 242 concession rate patrons (seniors, students, children above 5 years) and 20 children (below 5 years).

The annual MS Mighty Swim was as big as ever with over 400 competitors. The online donations had reached $74,694 this morning with cash donations and registration money (less expenses) still to be banked and added to the total. It is anticipated that the total will reach around the $90,000 mark. Donations can continue to be received for another week or so. The online total can be monitored at  http://www.msmightyswim.com.au/.

08 February 2015

Time to apply for Community Grants

Community Grants Program

The City of Unley provides grants to assist community groups and organisations wishing to make a positive contribution to the community and cultural life of the City.
Through its Community Grants Program, the City of Unley provides opportunities for individuals, community groups and organisations to improve the wellbeing, quality of life, community participation and life skills of residents in the Unley community There are two funding categories:
  • Community grants : Organisations, *individuals and community groups are encouraged to apply for funding of up to $4,000 for projects and/or programs that demonstrate benefits to the Unley community in the categories of recreation, art and culture, community, community health and wellbeing, and environment.
  • Festivals and events : Organisations, *individuals and community groups are encouraged to apply for funding of up to $3,000 for an event or festival that demonstrates social, environmental, economic and cultural benefits to the Unley local government area.
Individuals must be working on a project in collaboration with an auspice (either a local community group or organisation) to handle any funding received from the grant.
The next round of funding closes at 5 pm on Tuesday, 31 March 2015.

06 February 2015


This event is free to Unley residents. you just need to call at the Council before the event with proof of where you live!

The event will feature an impressive line-up of local musicians - The Timbers, Kelly Menhennett, Cal Williams Jr, Emily Davis, AP D'Antonio, Tara Carragher, Emily A Smith and Adie Haines! Gates open at 10, and the music kicks off at 11. There will be dogs available for adoption on show at the event, and various fundraising stalls including SA DOG RESCUE, Oscar's Law, and Animals Australia. The City of Unley rangers will be at the event promoting responsible pet ownership with the dog and cat management board interactive trailer.

One bin too many?

When  the amount of space in the bins is just not enough, you have a couple of options. You can either beg for space in your neighbours bin and this might work if you don't do it very often, or you can ask Council's contractor (SOLO) to supply additional bins and have them emptied for a small additional cost. 
Currently  the rate is :  140L Blue waste bin $122 per calendar year (or $2.34/wk), 240L yellow-lid recyclables or organics bins $82 per calendar year (or $3.15/fortnight). While some 700 households already do this it seems that some people have been having additional bins collected at no extra cost. This will affect about 100 households.


05 February 2015

Free Fridays start this hot Friday

This weekend is a big one for our Swimming Centre with ‘Free Friday’ kicking off this week. This means Casual entry to the centre will be ‘Free’ after 4:30pm until close at 8pm. This will be running until season end in May.

It looks like it will be a hot evening to start with so bring the family down for some free entertainment, cool off and start the weekend refreshed.

The annual MS Mighty Swim is being hosted also this Saturday and Sunday (Starting Saturday at noon and finishing 24 hours later, Sunday noon). This year is  a little special as it marks the events 10 year anniversary. Total funds raised now exceed $500,000. This year’s tally is already nearing the $50,000 mark.

03 February 2015

What keeps us fit?

 A recent survey of Unley residents resulted in the following statistics. People were able to select more than one activity.

Walking for Fitness    72.98%
Walking a Dog    43.85%
Cycling/ bike riding    43.04%
Swimming    42.07%
Aerobics/ fitness    37.70%
Tennis    22.65%
Yoga   18.61%
Golf    16.50%
Australian Rules Football    12.62%
Dancing   11.17%
Soccer    9.06%
Lawn Bowls   8.58%
Basketball    8.09%
Netball    7.12%
Athletics    5.99%
Youth Sport (skate, BMX)   5.50%
Hockey   5.50%
Pilates    3.07%
Croquet    2.91%
Running    2.75%

Something to do and enjoy!