New South Wales
To whom it may concern,
As a local resident close to the racecourse, i am objecting to what i consider to be a gross misuse of the facility and to what will be a large problem for the amenity of all local residents.
My issues with allowing night events (irrespective of the number of these events or what kind of event they are) are as follow:
Traffic on race days in the local area is horrendous. Ubers, taxis, private vehicles all pile up around Doncaster Ave and adjoining streets making it impossible for local residents to leave or return home without encountering heavy traffic. This occurs throughout the event but peaks at the end of the events and lasts for hours aftewards. Allowing night racing will increase the frequency of these events, which is grossly unfair to local residents.
Foot traffic around the local streets during and after these events is increased. With an increase in foot traffic comes an increase in noise. On Ascot st where I live, race day crowds commonly spill out of the Ascot Carpark exit into a neighbouring dog park and continue to drink and make large amounts of noise in the area. It's bad enough during the day when locals are trying to enjoy the space with their families, children and pets, but would be made worse at night when children and other household members are trying to sleep.
The noise from the racecourse is a huge issue for local residents, irrespective of what kind of event is occurring. This noise travels throughout the local streets. It is only tolerable during the day because residents know that it will end at night. If night events are allowed to occur, residents will be impacted when they are resting and sleeping. Many houses along the border of the racecourse are owned by families with young children, many of which go to sleep early. How is it fair for local residents to have to compete with noise levels from the racecourse in these circumstances?
Parking remains an ongoing problem in Kensington. The council has approved many new student accommodation types with large amounts of students moving in. Many of these buildings dont have parking levels. In tandem with this, race day events have always created huge parking issues for locals as racegoers take their spots by those wishing to avoid the carpark at the racecourse. Night events will deprive locals, especially on Doncaster Ave where many houses rely on onstreet parking, of parking spaces. This will be a huge issue for families returning from events around Sydney and for those who are returning home from work. Local parking limits are not deterring raceday parkers.
Behavior of members exiting the race course
On racedays, member racegoers leave the course inebriated. They spill out onto the local streets and make a large amount of noise. As mentioned above, they also congregate in the side streets. For example, many racegoers congregate in the local dog park on Ascot street. They do this to continue drinking, or whilst they wait around for their transport. In these circumstances, they make an incredible amount of noise. If this were to happen at night, it would adversely impact local residents trying to sleep and relax.
There have also been instances of bad behavior by these racegoers, as they have pulled out street signs in the local streets, vandalized local playground equipment, thrown their used rubbish (bottles, cigarettes) into the gardens of local properties. Night time will only encourage this kind of behaviour even more when there is less visibility.
Having night events would create a large amount of light pollution for neighboring properties. This would adversely affect the ability of locals to rest or sleep, and would also have impacts on local wildlife. Most other venues that have night lights and night events do not have residential properties immediately backing onto the racecourse, and have a buffer. This is not the case for local Kensington residents.
Types of events
As mentioned the Sydney Morning Herald, there are potential plans to allow other types of events such as Sky Diving at the racecourse. What guarantees does the government offer that events such as skydiving wont adversly impact local residents? What would happen if a diver hits a household's roof or lands on children playing in the backyard? It's an incredibly short sighted idea that only benefits the racecourse as an additional income source.
This event is a great example of a gross misuse of the facility and opens pandora's box for other kinds of events to occur at the venue which would adversely impact local residents. What other events might also be offered at the racecourse at night? Would these events have similar or greater impacts on traffic, noise, light pollution, parking?
This proposal must be rejected on the impacts mentioned above. Randwick racecourse is NOT an entertainment distract. It was not purpose built or planned for such a thing. There is a delicate balance for which this facility has to balance. These new plans throw the balance of this relationship out and favour those with money to make rather than local residents.
Why does Sydney need nighttime racing in addition to day time? What problem does that solve other than make the racecourse more money and promote greater levels of gambling in the community? There has to be a balance here and this plan should be rejected on the basis that it is not balanced or fair for locals.