WESTCONNEX contractors began packing up their Sydney Park construction compound on Euston Road today following a huge community campaign to stop the works.
Residents began a 24/7 blockade of the site on Monday 19 September after receiving notification that construction, including destruction of trees, would start that day.
“This is a huge win for the community given WestCONnex told residents these works would last for up to eight weeks,” said WestCONnex Action Group (WAG) spokesperson Janet Dandy-Ward.
“We know from the tree report WestCONnex submitted for the site that they planned to destroy over 160 trees there before moving on to road widening works. But thanks to the constant vigilance of the community, they only destroyed two – and completed just a few days’ work.”
Residents blockading the site witnessed and reported numerous breaches of WestCONnex planning conditions that would have seen many more trees destroyed unlawfully, said Ms Dandy-Ward.
“Residents highlighted WestCONnex’s failure to get its tree report approved before works started, forcing the planning department to halt the work. Residents spotted native birds nesting in a tree that was about to be destroyed, forcing workers to stop. Residents noticed works encroaching on City of Sydney land, forcing the construction compound to move.
“If it wasn’t for the residents who were there 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, WestCONnex’s contractors would have destroyed scores of trees. All for a road that’ll dump thousands of cars into our already choked streets, and sell families in western Sydney out to toll road companies.
“We know Mike Baird’s prepared to reverse his decisions to save his political career. We urge him to rethink WestCONnex before he’s remembered as the Premier who ruined Sydney,” said Ms Dandy-Ward.
Media contact: Rhea Liebmann 0410 517 343