Everything that visitors, tourists, Newcastle residents and other locals are drawn to, exists on this peninsula:
It is home to the beaches, regional parks, coastal walks, dog beach, cafes, historic precinct, sea cliffs, aboriginal heritage precinct, surf clubs and ocean pools.
It is a pedestrianised zone frequented every day, all year round by walkers, families, bike riders, swimmers, surfers, play groups, community gardeners, café patrons, hang gliders, heritage walking groups, educational groups, tourists and backpackers, fishermen and women, dog owners/walkers, office workers, fitness groups, elderly residents and clients of the many small businesses in the area.
Not just the residents will be disrupted by the event and the months of disruption leading up to it. It therefore makes no sense to locate a race circuit on this highly utilised part of Newcastle.
In a protected corner of the Foreshore Park, the Newcastle East community have established a thriving garden. It is home to a wide variety of ornamental and practical plants. Every day, the garden is full of birds. Young families, elderly residents, visitors to the park and volunteers spend many hours in the garden each week. It serves as a community hub and meeting place.
LOSING OUR PARKLANDS
The Foreshore Park was an iconic regional destination. It hosted weddings, birthdays, fun runs, picnics an family-friendly activities. Since April, no events have taken place. Supercars have control of the East End peninsula (i.e. all of the race precinct) until 31st December 2017!
To enable the race infrastructure and the race circuit, Supercars has (with the blessing of Newcastle City Council) resumed over 2 hectares of green space and resurfaced it with bitumen and concrete. 200 trees have been removed. NCC still insists that this is an improvement to the Foreshore Park. These before and after photographs allow you to be the judge.
Despite Minister Adam Marshall assuring Parliament (when he was arguing for the legislation enabling the event to be passed) that the beaches, pools and Foreshore would be accessible AS USUAL, this has not eventuated. And as recent literature put out by Supercars and NCC says, the only route to access Newcastle Beach and Baths and Nobbys Beach will be from the top of King Edward Park, down to Newcastle South and along the beach front. That rules out most families with small children and strollers and most people with mobility issues!