8 am is normally the quietest period of the Coffee session. I’ve never had anyone waiting for me before today. As “Murphy” would have it the day I get caught on the phone and arrive late is the day that two residents would already be there.
David is first. He already has a large latte and I learn from the Pellegrini’s staff he has been waiting since 7:30 am! As it turns out he’s one of the nicest people you could wish to meet with a clearly kind heart and a solid grasp of what makes a good community.
The main reason for David’s early hour visit is to raise the Goodwood Underpass. For locals this underpass is as eclectic as the shops and street art along Goodwood Road. It has some wonderful history. Its construction the result of a tragic accident in the early 1900 which saw two people die from a collision between their horse drawn cart and a train. Our forebears were no less knee-jerk than we tend to be in society today and so they immediately went about building the underpass to ensure it never happened again. The construction was rather rudimentary. There is only a thin layer of concrete across the sides to hold back the dirt. Construction this basic would not be permitted today.
David has heard about the possible rejuvenation of the underpass and he’s keen to learn more. He tells me about France and how the villages you drive through have an amazing sense of community where the residents take ownership over the street-scape and he’s keen to see that type of attitude around the Goodwood underpass. The rejuvenation of the underpass is largely a State Government project as the road belongs to them but the there is the national rail freight line across the top and with the side streets that parallel the underpass being Council’s, this would be a three tier of government project.
We talk about the reopening of the Millswood Station and how we can get more local involvement in the beautification of our streets. We are going to meet again soon and I’ll bring a few others to further explore his ideas in relation to how the underpass can be rejuvenated.
Thea has been on her iPad doing emails whilst David and I talk. I introduce her to David to join the conversation and in a natural way we all talk until David decides to head off leaving Thea to raise the issue of Bike Art installations. They sound great and I can see some photos. I’m keen to push this concept. It will be great for Unley, especially in the lead up to the Velo-City conference. Our conversation delves into the Adelaide Park Lands and other areas before Ben arrives.
Ben is a big double blue fan and is keen to know what is going on with Unley Oval. I explain that from the workshop it seems apparent that Council is more focused on the two grand stands and lighting.
That gaining extra open space and fencing is a lower priority but will be discussed. That there is no appetite for Council to move the tennis or bowls or get cricket at this stage. That anything we do will not preclude a future Council at a future stage from getting involved in these areas. We then talk about state politics before he finally has to go.
Now like a good murder mystery I wont say who I spoke to about running for Council, but the timeline for the elections can be found here.