Metal Bollard Lights
235 one metre high metal bollard lights, costing $950.00 each, and two six metre poles, at a total cost of $400,000, are being installed along the Bi-Centennial Coastal Cliff Walk at frequent intervals ranging from 3 to 7 metres apart.
These lights significantly diminish the natural environmental and heritage values of the Bi-Centennial Coastal Cliff Walk (BCCCW) and are being installed against the Recommended Management of the BCCCW:“It is strongly recommended that there be no alterations or modifications to the equipment, relics, natural vegetation and rock formations, or structures included in the area of the Bi-Centennial Coastal Cliff Walk."(1)
The installation of the bollard lights is also contrary to Christison Park’s Plan of Management, which at 5.2 states: “Harbour and ocean views contribute significantly to the visual character of Christison Park. These views should be protected….Because of its enscarpement nature, Christison Park, is visible from many points in and around Sydney Harbour. Preservation of the park’s skyline is of great importance. Council should prohibit those developments which threaten to obstruct the natural skyline of Christison Park.”(2) They are incompatible with the park’s Plan of Management.
Local residents and park users are shocked to see the intrusive lights causing loss of open, uncluttered natural environment and ruining views. There was NO community consultation. Signs were placed along the BCCCW during the Christmas holiday announcing the metal poles as a fait accompli. The signs merely provided information about the start of the project, without consulting the community. There was a contact number for questions without asking the community if they wanted this. We now know the project was already in Council’s Delivery Program 2018 to 2021 & Operational Plan 2019/20 under Capital Budget 2019/20.
Local residents and park users oppose the metal bollard lights which Council claim are for people to walk along the cliffs at night, with disregard to their obtrusive nature and diminishing of the natural environment during daytime. They are on from pre sunset to post sunrise. SCPAG knows of no local resident or park user who wanted the lights installed. Local residents want to preserve the open natural environment, night sky and the beauty of the views along the BCCCW.
There is also concern the lit up path and coastal fence surrounded by darkened bushes are likely to attract anti-social behaviour. According to reports, it is best to restrict night-time access along cliff tops. There are safer areas nearby for night walking.
Council advertises that it hopes to increase small bird population in the area of the BCCCW and claims it wants to protect habitat for birds. SCPAG has written to Council about the adverse effects of the metal bollard lights to the environment including the disturbance to native animals and bird life. The lights are being installed through bushy areas, habitats of many bird species. Most birds are diurnal, they sleep at night. Lights and activity keep a bird awake, birds’ instincts are to stay awake during this time when predators may be present. Birds can become disoriented by artificial light at night and besides other things can send out flight calls that may lure other nearby birds to their death. The metal bollard lights will disturb bird life.
Local residents want to preserve and protect the natural environment, wonderful views, night sky, native fauna and birds in contracdition to Council's Christison Park's of Management.
If you want to help preserve this unique environment, please sign our petition.