FORGET Bondi, forget Manly, going to the beach in the heart of the west will soon be a whole lot easier.
One of Western Sydney’s most-loved swimming spots will be given an upgrade including a ‘beach’.
City of Parramatta Council has revealed concept plans for the swimming area at Lake Parramatta and is now seeking feedback from the community.
The proposed design includes several new elements to help improve safety and accessibility, including creating a gentle sloping entrance to the lake and separate steps and handrail for greater accessibility.
The plans for Lake Parramatta also include a new ‘beach’, seating and umbrellas for shade. An overwater pontoon is also being considered but will be subject to further assessment.
“Lake Parramatta was officially re-opened for public swimming and recreation in 2015 and it has been incredibly popular ever since. About 50,000 people visit every year,” City of Parramatta Lord Mayor Cr Donna Davis said.
“Surrounded by bushland, it’s a great spot to soak up the sun and take a dip during the warmer months. It’s important to get the balance right to provide accessibility for all, while respecting our environment.
“I have no doubt that regular visitors to Lake Parramatta will be excited to see these upgrades. The intent is to maintain the natural bushland setting, improve safety and accessibility and add a few extra comforts, like seating and shade.”
Cr Davis said the addition of a permanent ‘beach’ surface and a second entry point with steps and handrails will dramatically improve accessibility to the area, which is frequented by families, young people and the elderly – especially between October and April, when lifeguards are on duty.
“I encourage everyone who has visited Lake Parramatta to have their say on our proposed design, so we can make sure the changes we make truly reflect the needs of the community,” Cr Davis said.
This project has been made possible by a $905,000 grant from the NSW Government’s ‘Places to Swim’ program.
Member for Parramatta Geoff Lee said the creation of new places for people to get in, on and around water was one way to support community health and wellbeing – particularly in growing communities.
“People living inland have less access to natural swimming spots than those on the coast, which is why this project will be so beneficial for the Parramatta community, especially for families and children,” Mr Lee said.
The final plans will reflect feedback from community consultation, and the results of site investigations including geotechnical and engineering considerations. A Review of Environmental Factors will also be completed. Construction is expected to start in April 2023 and be completed before next summer.
For more information or to have your say, visit www.cityofparramatta.co/lake-parra