Park plans to go on display

A LANDSCAPE architecture firm estimates its concept to turn a Dubbo river corridor into a recreation jewel would cost $19 million.

The Dubbo City Council voted recently to give the public its say on a specially-commissioned master plan for Regand Park, including the price tag for the works.

Councillors urged the community to peruse the document by Moir Landscape Architecture when it went on exhibition and say if it should be adopted or dumped.

The council did not put the capital works found within the master plan in its budget and viewed it as a long-term strategic plan for the biggest single area of undeveloped recreational-zoned land within the city.

Cr Allan Smith said the beauty of the master plan was that it brought everything forward, including costs and issues arising from flooding and drainage.

He argued it should go on public display to hear from the community and use those comments to revise the plan in the future.

Cr Tina Reynolds and Cr Ben Shields were still not comfortable about going to the public without actual designs of infrastructure and details on how much it would cost to repair if a flood came through.

Cr Shields noted it had in fact cost NSW taxpayers $200,000 to refurbish the visitors centre after the December 2010 flood.

"All this cost-heavy infrastructure on a flood plain is not right," he said.

Cr Shields also cast doubt on the council's ability to secure federal and state funding for the projects outlined in the $19 million cost estimates.

"It's ridiculous to think we will get grants to build on a flood plain," he said.

Cr Shields reported speaking to "hundreds of people" who were not in favour of the plan.

Cr Smith said he hoped those people made submissions.

The motion to put the master plan on public display was ultimately carried 9-2, with councillors Reynolds and Shields maintaining their opposition.

The 67-hectare Regand Park site is located on the eastern side of the Macquarie River and has 2.3 kilometres of river frontage.

The Moir master plan, which was obtained at a cost of $26,000, was written after consultation with key groups and the wider community.

Its features include the relocation of the velodrome from Victoria Park, the establishment of a criterium track, the creation of a series of wetlands and the development of structured woodland plantings, cycleways and pedestrian paths, swimming lake, children's playground and bike track.

faye.wheeler@ruralpress.com

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