Northbridge Baths Action Plan – Meeting #2

The following comprises an extract of discussions held on Friday May 30th 2014, by key Northbridge Baths stakeholders.

Attending the meeting were – Paul Collings (WCC A/Director of Infrastructure); Kate Day (Willoughby Leisure Manager); Rob Coote (Northbridge Progress Association); Simon Thwaites (Northbridge Swimming Club) and Tor Bowen & Bruce Wilson ( Friends of Northbridge Baths).

Attendees discussed and reviewed the individual outcomes of Meeting #1 and covered an additional Table of items outlined by Kate Day.

We inspected the key areas of the whole “Baths experience” as the users view it (Car Park; Widgiewa Road; Boatshed turnoff; Entrance; Grass area; External structures; Internal areas) for 50 minutes.

We then had a “round table” discussion and resolution of future actions. This Report draws together the issues in appropriate groupings (not order of discussion), stating the core issue and proposed remedy. When the list of tasks has been settled, FONB/NSC will meet with Council as to how to assist with labour, follow-up items, maintenance etc.

Work completed since Meeting No.1 (17-Mar-2014):

  • Weld repair to western pontoon lane rope fixing;
  • Front entrance sign and fence removed and replaced;
  • Dead tree overhanging south-western roof removed;
  • Widgiewa Road verge/gutter cleared of weeds;
  • Missing tile and blocked shower drain fixed; shower tiles all cleaned;
  • All new fluorescent globes and starters in both change rooms;

Work planned for 7 months to end 2014:

A1: Baths signage:
The Tenilba Road/ Eastern Valley Way sign looks dilapidated. Aim to clean by October. Consider renovation 2016.
Other street signs to be checked : similar treatment proposed.
Carpark sign on Parking Restrictions is OK;
B1: Car Park:
Surface excellent; fences and signs adequate; Aim to replace/repair CCA (“copper”) rail by October.
B2: Litter:
Generally minimised since FONB “direction action”.
Aim for FONB to collect litter daily; Council officer to check/clean on each inspection day.
B3: Small garbage bin at head of stairs,
40mm limited opening gap and WCC Universal lock – light chain may suffice;
Noted the North Sydney Council experiment of removing bins to deter “bag dumpers”, but will do 12 month trial;
Council Maintenance Officer to use his key to empty as required (probably weekly in summer peak; fortnightly at cooler months).
B4: Steps:
Minor repairs to smooth any sharp edges; rust converter on exposed steel; white painted step front edges;
Divert carpark run-off water at head of steps at about four places to disperse and flow into bushland, rather than become an eroding waterfall down the steps in heavy rain;
C1: Widgiewa Road:
“No Parking” signs in good repair; keep monitored.
C2: Western verge/gutter
to be scheduled for regular clearing so as to give clear visibility for drivers of the gutter, and to remove fire risk.
(Excellent clean out on 28 May).
D1: Baths Entrance:
Noted huge improvements with removal of timber sign and corroded fencing;
re-use of timber post to stay new galvanised railing grate; removal of weeds; opening of vista to Baths and Bay.
When galvanising has further oxidised (possibly October) it will be painted vegetative green (along with the adjacent private electricity pole).
D2: New, hand-tamped asphalt entrance to road drain grate:
D3: Stormwater pipe (upper section)
Water pumped through to displace solids and accumulated mud (29 May);
Master Plan should include item for re-opening the lower pipe that channels the storm water out without scouring the beach;
The scoured area is re-filled from sands “sucked” westwards from the Baths by the incoming tide, thus exposing more rock within the Baths!
D4: Boatshed corner
needs two pictorial warning signs (down- and up-hill) to drivers to stay as wide as possible to avoid losing traction;
D5: Vehicle “Roll-back”
square timbers (approx. 200mm square, and 5.2m and 5.5m long) from the stormwater drain westwards, tied into the bases of existing pushed over posts.
Aim is to enable vehicles that have lost traction to be able to slowly rest a tyre onto the timber, then drive away.
E1: Grassed area:
Noted the unsatisfactory 200mm unkempt grass under seats and around edges and “scalped” areas.
Noted that domestic lawnmower and edger achieve perfect result under 60 minutes.
Contract Specifications to be reviewed and alternative local solution to be investigated.
WLM to ask Accounts Officer to check whether Contractor charged fee for 29th May attendance at Baths.
E2: Grassed area
is mainly on recovered sand, and is nutrient-leached by the rain.
Has not received organic or chemical boost for 20 years. Aim to top dress by end-September.
E3: Southern raised area
needs about 2 cubic metres of fill on eastern side where removed building was.
Aim to spread before September, then top-dress.
E4: Shade sails
suggested (four, triangular) re-using the six fixed steel poles to be investigated.
E5: Area under Casuarinas
Investigate use of (second hand) artificial grass near Casuarinas;
the acidic needles deter the grass from growing, leaving dust/mud for children to play on.
E6: Garden areas:
to be planned over winter.
FONB has offered to do maintenance. Council suggests Park Care group to weed, water, prune etc.
E7: Seats
Monier seats removed from Castlecrag streetscape upgrade to be brought to Baths;
E8: Collapsible tressle tables:
to be investigated by FONB for delivery end September;
F1: Concrete Forecourt:
Remove trip hazards and rough surfaces, by identifying spalled and drummy areas.
Decide on best patching medium. Patch by end September.
G1: Boardwalk area:
Dark red rubber tiles to be replaced as needed until stocks nearing depletion then decision on new (lighter-coloured) surface as part of the Master Plan.
G2: Ladders:
base struts to be investigated to remove underhang (esp north-western ladder).
If removal is required, then re-antifoul (should last 2 years).
G3: Starting Pontoons
to be renewed/refurbished by end September. (David di Biase?)
G4: Jumping Plank
Jumping plank at eastern end to be investigated over winter:
relative safety liabilities of specific area for jumping, etc.
G5: Stormwater pipe
End-tray has been bent up causing flow inside, rather than outside the floating boom. Fix by end September.
G6: Oysters:
Identify highest risk areas (eg, stairways, ladders).
Noting that they cannot be eliminated from any surface that is not antifouled – so chip off and grind smooth any sharp edges – By end September.
G7: Sharkproof netting:
Sharkproof netting and floating booms to be inspected.
Repairs as required. All new ropes on floating boom annually. By end September.
G8: Lane Ropes
Clean lane-ropes;
FONB and NSC to plan for new lane-ropes.
H1: Change Rooms:
Thorough cleaning of papiermache and accumulated grime from, and repairs of, ceilings inside and outside eaves.
H2: Showers
New shower fitting in booth 2 (mens showers).
Check of all shower/sink/under-sink hose taps; replace washers/seatings as necessary, esp in Hot/Cold showers which are more used.
H3: Showers
Repair/replace top braces in shower booths. End September.
H4: Hot Water Services:
Investigate low-cost options for providing additional insulation around exposed tanks on western side – By end December.
Works (if any) by end April 2015.
H5: Concrete Floors
Reduction of rust stains on concrete/tiled floors.
FONB to trial combinations of Bicarb/Cider Vinegar; CLR; rust converter by end July.
H6: Clothes Hooks
Replacement of 40 year-old clothes hooks and rusted screws. By end September. (FONB assistance?)

Master Plan for the Baths now re-scheduled to 2015/ 2016.

Other matters resolved:

1.Night time fishing/camping:
Agreed to display/use main Council phone 97771000 for contacting rangers.
FONB to canvass Boat owners and Minimbah and other houses who can observe fishermen/campers.
  1. Bringing emptied garbage bins down to Baths:
    To be shared by FONB and WCC Maintenance Officer.
  2. Numeric keypad locks:
    not to be pursued.
  3. Locked cupboard in women’s change-room
    to be investigated for key and suitability for FONB to store cleaning equipment.
    (No hose to be left out in change-rooms.)
5.. Installation of an Emergency phone:
not to be pursued.

The meeting concluded at 9am, with all parties acknowledging the progress made to date, and the desire to build on the cooperative approach.