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Hub’s approval angers neighbours

Thursday, 26th March, 2015

By Erica Visser

Residents near Creedon Street’s public housing say they’ve been let down after City Council last night unanimously approved a request to turn a vacant house into a gathering spot.

Compass Housing, which has the contract for public housing in Broken Hill, put forward the bid to turn a 123 Creedon Street into a “community hub” for residents to socialise and learn new skills.

The project’s Development Application (DA) was deferred last month pending a councillor site inspection.

Several residents in streets near the proposed site, a crime hotspot, had written submissions opposing the hub but it had the support of a number of Aboriginal organisations and police.

Newton Street resident Phil Day said that he had hoped Council would have enforced greater restrictions on the DA.

“I’m very disappointing in their outcome...You can’t break that cycle (of anti-social behaviour) with teaching kids cooking and doing their homework when there’s violence going on across the road,” said Mr Day.

“I think they are going to use it as a babysitting centre. They’ll send their kids across the road and they’ll just party.

“...They party from pay day right through to the following Tuesday, it’s 24 hours non-stop. Call me a racist, but ... it’s terrible, it really is.”

Mr Day’s comments were in response to Cr Jim Richards who had spoken out against the use of “racist” language in relation to the DA, urging opponents to “realise that Creedon Street isn’t a correctional facility, it’s not an area reserved for just indigenous people either.”

Jenny Camilleri said her views and those of Mr Day were the same as those living in Newton, Harris and Lunam streets as well as Pell Lane.

“I think that it’s unnecessary to have a hub in Creedon Street when there’s other facilities that can be utilised,” she said.

“They’ve just built a brand new Maari Ma centre in Argent Street to have exactly the same type of services on offer. They can always get transport down there for those issues.

“I don’t think that having the hub there is going to change anyone living in that region’s way of living.”

Cr Richards said he was happy with the outcome that was voted forward by seven present councillors. Cr Bob Algate was absent and Crs Darriea Turley and Dave Gallagher left the chambers.

“From Council’s point of view we’ve just met the requirements for the DA and Council’s voted on that,” he said.

“I see that as an important first step in hopefully addressing some pressing issues facing many different parts of our community.”

The hub would have an upgraded kitchen and the addition of a shed and activities deck.

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