The Hills and Hornsby council chatter

New: The council depot in Conie Avenue, Baulkham Hills, will service East Ward temporarily. Picture: The Hills Council

New: The council depot in Conie Avenue, Baulkham Hills, will service East Ward temporarily. Picture: The Hills Council

Author Alex Miller will appear at Hornsby Library for the 2014 Sydney Writers' Festival. Picture: John Tsiavis

Author Alex Miller will appear at Hornsby Library for the 2014 Sydney Writers' Festival. Picture: John Tsiavis

Galston Library will close temporarily from May 12 to 25 while its roof gets restored. Picture source: Hornsby Council Facebook page

Galston Library will close temporarily from May 12 to 25 while its roof gets restored. Picture source: Hornsby Council Facebook page

THE Hills mayor Michelle Byrne said moving the council from Castle Hill to Baulkham Hills had created an opportunity to move council workers closer to their respective patches.

The council opened two new depots last week in Conie Avenue, Baulkham Hills, and Columbia Court, Norwest Business Park (next door to the council’s new administration centre).

A smaller satellite depot will open in Les Shore Reserve, Glenorie, later this year.

‘‘The Hills Council is one of Sydney’s largest local government areas . . . getting from one end of the shire to the other can take more than an hour,’’ Cr Byrne said.

‘‘This is a far more efficient approach to serving the residents and ratepayers of The Sydney Hills.’’

Cr Byrne said the bulk of the council’s operations were moved to the new administration building last December, but some  teams continued to work from the old building in Showground Road. They  now work from depots throughout The Hills.

■ New depots: In Columbia Court to service Central and North wards; in Gibbon Road, Baulkham Hills, to service West Ward and a fleet workshop.

■ Future depots: Les Shore Reserve to service North Ward; Ted Horwood Reserve, Baulkham Hills (to replace Conie Avenue), planned in conjunction with a redeveloped community nursery, to service East Ward.

Free skateboarding clinic

Pick up some new skateboarding skills at a free clinic, run by Hornsby Council and Streetwise Skateboarding. For beginners and experienced boarders.

Helmets compulsory. Anybody under 18 will need  parent/guardian  permission.

Hornsby Council’s 2013-14 budget includes $1.6 million for 15 parks and recreation projects including $300,000 for extensions to Cherrybrook Skate Park.

■ May 11, 10am-noon, Galston Skate park, Galston Road, Galston. Details: 98476531 or email kharris@hornsby.nsw.gov.au.

Sydney Writers' Festival event

Australian author Alex Miller will speak about his latest novel Coal Creek at Hornsby Library on May 21, 6.30pm-8pm, as part of the Sydney Writers’ Festival.

Set in central Queensland, Coal Creek explores tragedy, betrayal and the true nature of friendship.

Miller has received many literary accolades including two Miles Franklin Awards, one in 1993 for The Ancestor Game and another in 2003 for Journey to the Stone Country.

The library will also host a talk by The Claimant author Janette Turner Hospital on May 22, 7pm-8.30pm.

■Bookings: 9847 6614, hornsby.nsw.gov.au/library.

Comment on arts programs

The public has until May 23 to comment online on Hornsby Council’s community, arts and cultural programs. Mayor Steve Russell said some residents would also be randomly selected for a phone survey. ‘‘It’s very important that council hears from a broad range of the community so together we can improve the social and cultural services in Hornsby shire,’’ Cr Russell said.

■Comment at: hornsby.nsw.gov.au/haveyoursay.

Projects under way

Current The Hills Council road projects include: replacement of two old timber bridges on Pitt Town Road, Maraylya and road patching/safety improvements in Bannerman Road, Kenthurst (Glenhaven to Annangrove roads), May 10, 7am-5pm.

Waterways projects include construction of a stormwater pipeline extension at 38 Ashford Avenue, Castle Hill, Monday to Friday, 7am-5pm until the end of May.

Temporary library closure

Galston Library will close temporarily from May 12 to 25 while its roof gets restored. It will reopen on Monday, May 26, at 1pm.

A Hornsby Council spokesman said the roof work was needed ‘‘to improve its safety and appearance’’.

Items due at Galston Library can be returned to any other Hornsby shire library.

“Libraries are important infrastructure to educate and entertain Hornsby shire residents and this roof restoration is being undertaken to ensure the community can enjoy Galston Library to the fullest extent,” Hornsby mayor Steve Russell said.

■Details: http://hornsby.nsw.gov.au/library

Economic manager appointed

Former the Hills, Hawkesbury & Riverlands Tourism Association chief executive Lori Modde is joining The Hills Council on May 12 as its new manager for community and economic development.

Under her stewardship, HHART developed a destination management plan to outline strategies to boost visitor numbers and overnight visitor expenditure in The Hills.

Deputy mayor Andrew Jefferies said Ms Modde would bring a wealth of experience to the role.

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