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Thursday, 17 June 2010
Page: 5806

Mr MURPHY (4:55 PM) —This afternoon, I provide an update on the great success of a project I brought to the attention of this House late last year. I am referring to Australia’s first all abilities playground, Livvi’s Place at Timbrell Park, Five Dock, in my electorate of Lowe. Since its opening in November last year, Livvi’s Place has been a huge success. Livvi’s Place has reduced the barriers faced by children with special needs and their families. It has encouraged all children to have fun together, regardless of age or ability.

I am incredibly pleased to now report that, at the recent Institute of Public Works Engineering Australia engineering excellence awards for 2010 presented by the New South Wales division of the IPWEA, the City of Canada Bay Council received three awards out of nine categories. One of these awards, in the special community awards category, was for the Livvi’s Place all abilities playground at Timbrell Park. I understand that this award has only been given on one other occasion in the past decade. I would like to draw the attention of the House to the judges’ comments and to the following comment in particular. They said:

Once every few years a project comes along that catches our imagination as something that is worthy of special attention because of the uniqueness or importance as a community facility. This playground is just such a facility.

I wholeheartedly agree. This is an important initiative and I know it will continue to be of immense value to our community for years to come.

I join with the judges in commending the Touched by Olivia Foundation, Canada Bay council staff and the various corporate partners who donated time, expertise and materials to such a worthy community project. I am encouraged by the judges’ comments that Livvi’s Place is:

… a project that could and should be replicated in other areas to provide the means for less able children to experience the joys of a playground and the opportunity to mix with others.

I know too that John and Justine Perkins, from the Touched by Olivia Foundation, will be encouraged by this, as I know one of their aspirations is to have this type of project replicated across all councils to help improve the lives of children all over Australia. The great news is that, as a result of this award, Canada Bay council has been approached to assist other councils to deliver such projects.

I take the opportunity this afternoon to note two other awards received by Canada Bay council at the IPWEA (NSW Division) Excellence Awards for 2010. I understand the council received a ‘highly commended’ recommendation in the environmental enhancement project category for their Powells Creek stormwater harvesting project. The council also won the new or improved techniques category for project management methodology. I have been advised that the project management methodology was developed in-house by Canada Bay council. This methodology sets out various processes which the council decided must be followed to ensure a project is properly planned and delivered. The judges agreed that the methodology developed by Canada Bay council ‘provides a framework for the successful delivery of a project with all parties sharing responsibility for a successful outcome.’ Again the judges have recognised Canada Bay council as a leader and suggested that ‘other Councils consider this method of effective delivery of projects contained within their works program.’

I agree with the Mayor of Canada Bay, Councillor Angelo Tsirekas, when he says that winning one award at this level is good and that winning two is excellent, but gaining recognition in three areas is extremely rare and a credit to council, council staff and the community partnerships that delivered these projects. I draw to the attention of the House that the Mayor of Canada Bay, Angelo Tsirekas, is in the distinguished visitors’ gallery today. Through the speaker, I congratulate you, Angelo, for your leadership and vision. I again congratulate you, Angelo, and Canada Bay council on your great success and you, Angelo, for leading a pioneering council that keeps achieving better outcomes for ratepayers and residents. Well done to Angelo Tsirekas, the Mayor of the City of Canada Bay, to the general manager, Gary Sawyer, and to all his staff. They have done a terrific job.

The SPEAKER —Order! It being 5 pm, the debate is interrupted.