At the last Hornsby Council meeting on the 9th June, Councillor del Gallego proposed that the $7.1 million Galston Public Domain project to be placed on hold due to funding.

The proposed work at Galston is required to be undertaken to combat serious safety issues, decaying infrastructure, landscape and related public amenity as the gateway for tourists and community alike.

The Galston Public Domain project plan was endorsed by Council in December 2019 proposed a significant upgrade to Galston Road (main street). Out the series of consultations, these are the real issues from stakeholders eg rate payers, shop owners and residents of 2159 including:

  1. Rationalising traffic management and parking
  2. Improve safety for pedestrians and vehicles Galston Public Domain project 
  3. Reducing speed through the village with Vehicle movements are on the increase with 6400 + Pre COVID
  4. Improve access for visitors and locals including disabled parking
  5. Improving commercial frontages parking for safety and accessibility
  6. Address failing footpaths, unsafe access, drainage failures, antiquated signage
  7. Beautification of the village with a collaboration of agencies and local community to provide trees and landscaping
  8. Public toilets Galston Public Domain project 
  9. A cohesive approach to overall design with a collaborative approach with all stakeholders.

Hornsby Council should be congratulated in the series of community consultation sessions with support to resolve the ad hoc development of Galston’s village since 2019. These meetings have developed a level of trust between stakeholders, AGRA members and the community as a whole as never seen in recent years.

AGRA and the community understand that due to budgets the delivery timeframe is 2023/24 and 2024/25. We also recognise and understand we need an overall plan for the village which includes priorities within the project to align with available council funds and to approach other government agencies and shop owners. AGRA also acknowledges that other funding opportunities such as grants could be utilised to match council funds for the project.

Engagement and consultation with stakeholders is key in our rural community and an important part of this journey. Clearly, to put ‘on hold or suspend’ this long term projected which has been budget by Council was not acceptable.

AGRA made the community aware of this motion and the community rallied with many letters to councillors and the President registered as a speaker at the council meeting. The motion was defeated due to the support of councillors, AGRA and the Galston Public Domain Project will proceed.

Our next meeting will be a general meeting and AGM. This will be held on the 3rd August at 6.30pm