FOCUS On Burnside - the news hub

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This is our media hub of all things Burnside.

A hub for local news about people, businesses and happenings in our community.

You will see some beautiful photos from the Australia Day 2020 event on our Facebook page.


This is our media hub of all things Burnside.

A hub for local news about people, businesses and happenings in our community.

You will see some beautiful photos from the Australia Day 2020 event on our Facebook page.

  • Tree cover in Burnside

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    24 Nov 2020
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    The release of an RMIT University benchmarking report into national urban vegetation loss, Where Will all the Trees Be?, indicates that although there is an increase in tree and shrub cover across metropolitan Adelaide, South Australian councils are losing their urban vegetation at the highest rate due to development.

    Despite the extensive investment in our urban forest (on public land), the battle is still hard fought in Burnside.

    The greatest loss is from trees on privately owned land - cleared for housing redevelopment, home extensions, sheds and pools. Planning laws have been more facilitative where residents and developers make use of the laws available which, for most part, allow for tree removals.

    Council had concerns for the City's tree canopy in 2010, commissioning a Tree Canopy Assessment to benchmark the canopy coverage, identify plantable and non-plantable space, and to provide an Urban Tree Canopy (UTC) measure, (UTC is a scientific measure of the layer of leaves, branches and stems of trees that cover the ground when viewed from above – the level of cover that our trees provide to our community).

    Burnside’s UTC had reduced by nearly 10 per cent between 2010 and 2015 and the study identified that there was a greater risk of losing more.

    The study evaluated changes in our tree canopy, identifying that nearly 45 per cent of the City was covered with non-plantable surfaces such as buildings and roads. Only 31 per cent of the City was protected by tree canopy. The non-plantable cover had increased by 9.09 per cent, and tree cover decreased by 9.87 per cent. The study attributed this decline to new property development (urban infill).

    The RMIT report is consistent with the City of Burnside's findings.

    Although the report ranks Burnside as second among comparable councils nationally as having the highest green cover, there has been a 1.8 per cent decrease since 2016, with a 5.2 per cent increase in 'grey cover' (or non-plantable space) in the City since 2016.

    The report identifies that Burnside is not necessarily losing green space to new developments, “but more likely to views, swimming pools, tennis courts and patios as existing residences are expanded”. The urge to build larger homes or subdivisions on existing blocks, reduces the available private open space that can accommodate trees and gardens.

    What can be done to halt the decline?

    There is concern that the new Planning and Design Code will enable significant changes to Burnside's 'character' - the built heritage, residential character, thousands of street and private trees, and lower density housing. This 'character' has seen Burnside become one of the most sought after places to buy property, and consequently current property values reflect this.

    Trees are integral to this 'character' and continued education of residents on their value is essential to reduce the number of applications from residents to remove privately owned trees.

    Increased protection for trees is also greatly needed. Council is concerned that policy within the new Planning and Design Code will facilitate a greater loss of trees within our Council area, particularly on private land. These concerns will be raised in Council’s submission on the revised draft Code which is required to be lodged with the State Government by 18 December 2020.

    As part of the Resilient East group, Council is advocating for trees and canopy cover. For example, the Resilient East submission on the Planning Reforms has a strong focus on trees and Resilient East recently made a submission to the Parliamentary Inquiry into Urban Green Spaces, including an invited in-person representation to the inquiry.

    Council supports the outreach and advocacy conducted by Water Sensitive SA, with a strong focus on the State Planning Reforms and the co-benefits of water sensitive design and trees in urban areas.

    What about the urban forest?

    The City of Burnside devotes considerable resources to the planting and maintenance of trees in streets, reserves and on public land. Work which has led to the Council being recognised as one of only three Australian Tree Cities of the World.

    An ongoing initiative that commenced in 2016/17 aims to plant 1,000 trees per annum. This tree planting far exceeds the loss of trees on public land. During the last financial year (2019/20), Council planted over 1,500 trees on public land and provided over 11,000 plants for planting on both public and private land (further details in Council’s Environmental Sustainability Report).

    City of Burnside is working with councils across Adelaide to use LiDAR assessments of canopy cover which give more accurate and robust figures that that used for the RMIT report. This data will be used to guide policy development and initiatives to increase canopy coverage (further details in Attachments H and I of Council’s Environmental Sustainability Report).

    While the City of Burnside is actively planting trees and increasing canopy coverage on public land, some loss of trees and canopy is beyond the control of the Council. State planning and development laws facilitate the removal of many trees on private land. Council recognises this problem and has several initiatives aimed at reversing the potential for declines in tree canopy and vegetation cover on private land, including:

    Where will all the Trees Be? can be found on the Greener Spaces Better Places website.

  • Wind Back Wednesday

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    25 Nov 2020
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    Do you own a piece of Bennett’s pottery?

    Charles William Bennett and his son William Charles worked at Trewenack’s Pottery in Kensington Gardens until 1887 when they established Bennett’s Magill Potteries. The soil in Magill was rich with terracotta clay, ideal for pottery. Their products included garden pots, tiles and stoneware jars.

    The successful business is still managed by a Bennett, more than 130 years later.

  • COVID-19 Update 18 November 2020

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    18 Nov 2020
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    The Premier today enacted special measures to ‘lock down’ South Australia in response to the escalating COVID-19 health crisis. These measures directly impact the regular operations of our Council, employees and residents.

    On the basis of detailed information still to be confirmed in relation to the definition of 'essential services', we have decided to close all of our operations for the six day period, with the exception of the following essential services:

    • Council provided Waste Management services and East Waste collections (including hard waste and bin repairs).
    • Essential Commonwealth Home Support program services.
    • A skeleton staff to deal with essential or emergency services.
    • Cleaning of public toilets.

    More detail in the COVID-19 portal.

  • Wind Back Wednesday

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    18 Nov 2020
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    In September 1931, the narrow creeks of the eastern suburbs broke their banks. Waterfall Gully Road turned into a red-brown sea and the threat of a landslide in the hills felt imminent. Water coursed through the streets, sweeping through gardens while residents scrambled to protect their homes. In some instances, houses flooded to the ceiling.

    Despite the estimated thousands of pounds of damage, some of the community enjoyed the event. People watched the spectacle from the banks of the Torrens or paddled their canoes and dinghies onto the newly formed lakes.

    Photographs from the Local History Collection show the floods at Kensington Road, Portrush Road and Hazelwood Park.

  • National Road Safety Week

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    18 Nov 2020

    Pledge to drive so others survive

    I pledge to drive as if my loved ones are on the road ahead.

    I will remove all distractions and never use my mobile phone while driving.

    I will not put other people at risk by speeding, driving while tired or under the influence of alcohol/drugs.

    I will protect all vulnerable road users, especially those whose job places them in harm’s way, by slowing down and giving them the space they need to be safe.

  • COVID-19 Restrictions and Council Services

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    17 Nov 2020
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    The City of Burnside has responded to the announcement yesterday from South Australian Premier Steven Marshall providing an update on the COVID-19 directions for the community.

    A new COVID-19 cluster has emerged in our State and the situation is rapidly evolving.

    Chief Executive Officer Chris Cowley says “I want to reassure you that the Council is continuing to manage the situation through the Local Government Association SA, SA Health and the Eastern Health Authority.”

    From Tuesday 17 November, new social distancing and density restrictions are in place that will impact the services that Council provides to the community.

    “It will be business as usual for the majority of Council’s services,” Mr Cowley says. “However as the health and safety of our community and staff is our priority, the following services will alter for a two-week period from 17 November to 1 December:

    • All recreation facilities will temporarily close. The George Bolton Swimming Centre will remain open for lap and rehabilitation swimming; and closed for recreational swimming.
    • The Burnside Library, Regal Theatre and Pepper Street Arts Centre will remain open with strict social distancing and a density requirements of 1 person per 4m².
    • All Council-run social programs and community activities will cease.
    • All Volunteer programs will cease, including the Justice of the Peace service.

    To help with social distancing and good hygiene, signage, hand hygiene facilities, keeping interaction to a minimum through screens and employment of physical barriers and buffer zones will remain in place.

    “Please do not attend community centres if you are unwell,” Mr Cowley says.

    Council encourages queries to be done over the phone on 8366 4200 or via email on

    For more information visit Council's COVID portal.

  • Glenside Road Naming

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    19 Nov 2020
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    The City of Burnside is seeking community feedback on the following proposed names for eight (8) new internal roads and four (4) extensions of existing roads within stage 2 of the Glenside redevelopment site.

    The proposed names for the eight new roads are:

    • Blue Gum Drive;
    • Rose Lane;
    • Azalea Lane;
    • Dahlia Lane;
    • Lomandra Avenue;
    • Dianella Street;
    • Tea Tree Street; and
    • Cypress Street.

    There are also the extensions of Harriet Lucy Drive, Mulberry Road, Eucalyptus Lane and Amber Woods Drive.

    In line with Council’s Naming of Public Places Policy, feedback is being sought on these names.

    Should you wish to suggest an alternative name, please ensure that you convey why you are suggesting the alternative for consideration.

    For more information contact Council’s Senior Property Officer, Carmine Gallarello, on link) or telephone 8366 4200.

    Have your say by Monday 14 December.


  • Annual Community Survey 2020

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    18 Nov 2020
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    The Annual Community Survey is one of the many tools that Council uses to enhance community input into the planning of council business and future years' annual budgets.

    Councils are required to find the balance between what residents expect Council to deliver and what is fiscally possible and realistic for Council. A statistically relevant consultative process such as an Annual Community Survey can provide relevant and timely data, which may assist with informed decision making.

    It is important for Council to understand more about community opinions and feedback on various aspects of Council services.

    Each year an Annual Community Survey is conducted to gauge community satisfaction with Council services, or opinion on key issues. The survey is conducted in a cycle of trend data every second year, and a strategic survey for each intervening year. You can view past survey's online at

    The Survey is now open until 5 pm Friday 4 December 2020. You can also have your say, even if you don't receive a call. Simply complete the online Survey.


  • Tusmore Wading Pool Review

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    17 Nov 2020
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    The Tusmore Park wading pool has been popular with families, particularly those with toddlers, for many years.

    However the infrastructure is ageing and is now due for replacement.

    In early 2020 Council sought feedback from the community on the future of this space. The community gave strong support for retaining a water play feature, and gave some great suggestions on additional features that could be included.

    Based on this feedback, four (4) concept designs have been developed, and Council is now seeking community input to help decide what happens next.

    Time to Vote

  • How do you want to be represented?

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    17 Nov 2020
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    For over 60 years, the Council has had an elected Mayor and 12 Councillors representing 6 wards (local areas).

    Every eight years, the Council must consider its composition and structure to ensure that it is representing all electors in the community fairly. As part of the review we must consider and ask residents for their opinions on a number of issues.

    This is the first consultation in the Representation Review Process. Following this consultation, the Council will review the feedback received and determine its preferred model of representation. A further consultation will then be conducted on Council’s preferred model. It is important to have your say now so that your feedback is considered by Council when determining the preferred model.

    Any changes to representation and wards will be in place for the November 2022 Local Government Elections.

    Council is seeking your feedback on how you want to be represented.

    What are the options?**

    Council is reviewing its composition and structure as part of its Representation Review. This includes reviewing whether the council area should be divided into wards and if so, how many wards should Council have? It also includes reviewing the number of councillors in each ward and in total.

    Five different options are proposed for your consideration and you can always propose other options on how the council can best represent its community.