Locals are alarmed by an Expression of Interest from Woolworths to turn the historic Oval into a shopping centre with two levels of parking above ground and the playing fields on top.
The previously rumoured proposal by Woolworths has now emerged. Their ambitious left-field submission is for a shopping centre similar in size to Stocklands Balgowlah including a supermarket, specialty shops, a stadium/clubhouse and a 1000-space above ground car park.
The sports oval, tennis courts and bowling club will be reinstated seven metres - that's two and a half stories - above ground level.
“You would think we were in Singapore not Manly. Why would we even consider building a shopping centre on this site?” she exclaimed.
"Not only will we lose the whole of Ivanhoe Park including Manly's beautiful heritage oval, which is crown land, but the new development will gut retail in Manly's existing village centre and destroy Manly's most precious asset - its seaside village feel." Clr Bingham added
“One has to question the connections between Woolworths, the Mounties and Manly Rugby Club. And why do the Liberal councillors seem so determined to push through a car park on the oval site despite major public opposition”, Clr Bingham said.
Since the Manly2015 Plan was first released in 2011, Clr Bingham and many independent experts have questioned the financial validity of the oval car park project stating that the numbers just did not add up.
Other EOI submissions received, which only focused on an underground car park, will no doubt confirm the long-held view that Council has completely under-estimated the cost of building a two level 760 space underground car park for the $34m budget allocated.
Clr Bingham claims that the existing budget will only provide a smaller car park which will, in effect, just replace existing car parking spaces that will be lost due to the demolition of the Whistler Street car park and removal of parking from the streets.
“It’s time this council either scrapped the oval car park plan altogether or shelved it until the next election. As for the Woolworths proposal, it’s an insult and should be immediately discarded”, Clr Bingham concluded.
Expressions of Interest can be viewed here
Woolworth’s proposal is A-4.
Twelve EOIs were received for the construction of a car park on the Manly Oval site. They were:
AW Edwards; Abergelidie, Built Athas, Cockram Pty Ltd, FDC Pty Ltd, Haslin, Hindmarsh Pty Ltd, Hutchinson Builders, Kane, Michael Campareale (Campareale Holdings Pty Ltd) Richard Crookes Pty Ltd, Woolworths.
Three EOIs were received for the redevelopment of the Whistler Street site on a 99 year lease. They were:
Built Athas, Grengate, Grocon.
Candy Bingham, Deputy Mayor & Manly Ward Councillor on Northern Beaches Council. Background in marketing, public relations and community engagement. Author of five business books. Former Lady Mayoress of Sydney. Aka Candy Tymson.