FOKE is a community group with membership drawn from across Ku-ring-gai,
opposing inappropriate and unsympathetic overdevelopment within Ku-ring-gai,
and defending and promoting the cultural and natural heritage of Ku-ring-gai.
FOKE is not anti-development. We work on behalf of residents and friends
for the maintenance of Ku-ring-gai’s heritage and the enhancement of the
existing traditional character and amenity of its environment, both built and
- NSW Planning Legislation – Back door implementation feared
Following the welcome withdrawal of the draft NSW Planning Bills, due to the amount of community action and opposition in the Upper House, we are now dealing with a new Planning Minister. In a Cabinet reshuffle the former Minister for Planning, Brad Hazzard, was stood down and replaced by Minister Pru Goward along with Minister Rob Stokes as Assistant Planning Minister.
It is now feared that the State Government, instead of starting the new planning system review afresh, will instead implement the controversial changes to the planning system by way of ministerial powers and amending SEPPs.
- Turramurra Heritage Precinct Walk –FOKE proposal to Council on 26 June 2014
FOKE and interested residents have prepared a proposal to Council to protect the built and natural heritage areas of Turramurra for the sustainable beautification of the Turramurra Village. An educational walk linking the key heritage areas within the Hillview precinct would highlight Turramurra's rich built history and environment, as well as enhancing its socio-economic value. The walk would highlight Turramurra's contribution to Sydney's early history, help create a civic and cultural hub (distinct from other centres in Ku-ring-gai and Sydney). The precinct would create a ‘sense of place’ and become an active place for the local community to landscape and beautify at minimal cost to Council. To see FOKE's proposal to Council, click here 2014 Turramurra Heritage Walk Presentation. If you would like to support this initiative, please download our Walk Leaflet, sign the letter to Council within it and send to FOKE or Council.
- Reclassification and Sale of Public Assets to fund Council purchase of new administration building
On 4 December 2012 Ku-ring-gai Council decided to purchase of the head lease to 828 Pacific Highway, after considering a number of confidential reports in meetings which Council did not open to public scrutiny. Nor was there any prior community consultation. The acquisition was to be funded by what Council staff described as the “rationalisation” of 23 “under-utilised” council assets. Some of the 23 “under-utilised assets” included the Culworth Avenue Car Park, Killara; the Lifeline Centre, Gordon; the Gordon Community Pre-school; the Ku-ring-gai Town Hall, Pymble; and various pieces of public land adjacent to East Killara, West Pymble and East Lindfield shops. More».
- Culworth Avenue Killara Car Park Reclassification
The Car Park in Culworth Avenue, Killara was one of the “under-utilised assets” reclassified by Council from Community land to Operational land, in preparation for sale. FOKE has supported CARPARK (Citizens Against Reduced Parking at Railway), a group formed to fight the proposal to reclassify and sell the car park. Following numerous submissions, including by FOKE, over 6000 signatures to a petition, and numerous meetings, Council has recently resolved to negotiate the sale of a portion of the car park to Transport for NSW (TfNSW) for future multi-storey carparking.
Gordon Golf Course Master planning Controversy
At its meeting of 10 June 2014, Council resolved to begin the master planning process afresh, following numerous objections from the community regarding the earlier development recommendations, which focused heavily on housing and unit development. Ku-ring-gai Council will commence consultation with local residents with a focus on recreation facilities for all Ku-ring-gai residents on the Gordon Golf course site. Council states that no decisions have yet been made on the future of the Golf Course. More»
News & Updates
Our 2014 AGM and Public Forum were held on 28 May 2014. The President's 2014 Report delivered on that occasion is available here. The Public Forum was standing room only as notable speakers Dr Marco Amati and Ms Corinne Fisher presented on the Importance of Ku-ring-gai's Urban Forest to Sydney.
Associate Professor Dr Marco Amati, from RMIT University, Melbourne, spoke of his 2013 study that looked at the importance of this Urban Forest in terms of its ecological value and pollution mitigation benefits. This project sought to provide a solid basis for valuing urban forest – a crucial resource as cities adapt to climate change in the future, and vastly undervalued or ignored as part of past planning processes.
For a copy of Marco's presentation to the Forum go to FOKE Presentation. For a copy of Marco's full report go to Understanding the carbon and pollution mitigation potential of Australia's urban forest.
Corinne Fisher followed with a presentation on the Habitat Stepping Stones project she is currently managing. See the bottom of this column for more detail, and how to get involved in that project.
See also our latest newsletter For copies of all our newsletters, visit our newsletter archive.
Check out our latest Media Release , addressing the shocking comments by the new Minister for Planning, Ms Pru Goward. Media Release 3 June 2014
Ku-ring-gai's Habitat Stepping Stones Project.
Join other Ku-ring-gai residents in building wildlife pathways through our gardens and balconies. This is a pilot project from Macquarie University supported by Ku-ring-gai Council. For more information, go to www.habitatsteppingstones.org.au.