Sydney’s Wharf Rd boat ramp to close

SYDNEY’S popular Wharf Rd boat ramp (Ermington Boat Ramp) at Melrose Park on the Parramatta River is set to close for three years. Transport for NSW proposes to close the popular boat ramp for a period of three years and use the area as the staging yard for the Stage 2 Light Rail project.

The Melrose Park Residents Action Group (MPRAG) has asked that the bridge be moved further west, away from the ramp. This would allow construction and boaters’ use of the ramp to continue during construction. In recent meetings, MPRAG has been told that this option has not been investigated and/or considered.

This came to light during a hastily and somewhat quietly-run exhibition period that closed in December, and which did not include any notification in regard to the proposed closure at the ramp.

Over the past two months, MPRAG members (and boat owners) have attended the ramp on weekends where the ramp is at near full capacity. Not one of the hundreds of boat owners and users they spoke to was aware of the proposed closure and not one of them was aware that the plans had been exhibited and the submission period closed.

The Wharf Rd boat ramp is the first available trailer boat launching facility on the western end of the Parramatta River and as such is used by persons in Parramatta, the local area and many thousands of boat owners in Western Sydney. On most weekends it runs at full capacity. A closure of this ramp would mean that added pressure would be placed on many smaller ramp facilities to the east of Wharf Rd, at Rhodes, Putney, Concord, Abbotsford and Drummoyne.

With the removal of Wharf Rd ramp, the capacity of the other smaller ramps will be far exceeded, increasing the incidence of conflict and argument over parking and access in adjoining residential streets.

MPRAG is urging boat owners to make representations to Transport for NSW, their local member and Labor and Liberal candidates before the upcoming State Government elections.

Courtesy of RFA NSW.

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