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Council addresses footpath shortages in Bayside with prioritised list of streets

32 years needed to complete the list without grant, says Councillor

Based on presentations given on Wednesday to the City Works & Assets Committee, it looks like the budget for new footpaths will need some TLC over the next few years.

In a report by Peter Barber, Director City Futures, information was presented on the process to prioritise requests for new footpaths, and the current prioritised list of streets slated for new construction.

According to the list, there are 149 locations in Bayside without a footpath on at least one side of the street, with the cost to build them all coming in just under $8 million.

Nine footpaths from the list have already been approved for construction in the current year, using funding from the NSW Government's Get NSW Active program. Three additional footpaths have funding available under approved plans for shared cycleways.

The top 30 prioritised streets on the list. Items highlighted have already been allocated funding. Source: Bayside Council

The report recommended allocating a budget of $250,000 in each of the next two years to construct the remaining 137 footpaths. Councillor Andrew Tsounis noted that this "will take 32 years to finish without a grant."

Cr Tsounis stressed the importance of delivering footpaths as a core council undertaking, especially to "ageing people" and "people with prams".

"We're not moving fast enough," he added.

Under the council's criteria for prioritising footpaths, residents of Hawthorne St, Ramsgate Beach, Ida St and Walter St, Sans Souci, and a section of Bexley Rd, Bexley would have expected to see construction start in the 2023-2034 financial year.

However, five streets with lower scores jumped the queue due to a Notice of Motion put forward by Councillor Mark Hanna and supported by Council on 25 May 2022.

That Council prioritises the following streets in Bexley North and Sans Souci for provision of footpaths on at least one side of each street, along with any other street within the Bexley North area that has been without any form of footpath for in excess of 50 years.

• Handley Avenue, Bexley North

• Mainerd Avenue, Bexley North

• Miller Avenue, Bexley North

• Middleton Avenue, Bexley North

• Orpington Street, Bexley North

• Meriel Street, Sans Souci

- Minutes of Council Meeting 25 May 2022

In terms of funding to accelerate the construction program outside of the allocated budget, the council has applied for another tranche of funding "for a similar amount" to the prior grant from the Get NSW Active program.

Council also makes footpaths, curb upgrades, and any required street trees part of new development approvals for some properties.

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