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James Hardie Legacy Sites

FS Garside Park

Latest News November 2019

Maintenance in FS Garside

City of Parramatta has received enquiries about park maintenance within the fenced areas of FS Garside Park. Council has engaged a specialist contractor certified to safely work on landfill sites. All works will be carried out to comply with all appropriate work, health and safety standards. Contractors will wear appropriate personal protective equipment and will carry out air quality monitoring during staged mowing. Regular maintenance will continue until the anticipated Masterplan works begin in 2020.

For more information on work at FS Garside, please contact Council’s FS Garside project team on (02) 9806 5050.

Installation of gas and groundwater monitoring wells

In order to determine how to safely carry out further work at FS Garside, the City of Parramatta has commissioned qualified environmental consultants to install gas and groundwater monitoring wells within the park. Reports will inform the methods used to remediate the site and will help determine whether groundwater and ventilation treatments will be required as part of works to deliver the Draft North Granville Community Facilities Masterplan.

While it is unlikely that a former landfill site more than 10 years old, like that below FS Garside, will be releasing gas at volumes that may cause concern, ground gas monitoring is required to determine safe work practices for Council staff and contractors who may be required to work in confined spaces during construction.

The equipment necessary to conduct this monitoring, eight small wells for the monitoring of ground gases, and one tower well for groundwater monitoring has now been installed.

While on site, consultants also took additional, targeted soil samples to allow a more detailed understanding of the conditions at the site.

All works were carried out in areas of the park already closed to the public following SafeWork NSW health and safety standards for ground-disturbing work on a site where contamination may exist.

Air quality monitoring was undertaken during installation. All result were within normal limits.

Monitoring results

Environmental monitoring reports will be used to inform the design of future park upgrades including any mitigation required to manage groundwater contamination and any ventilation requirements. These results and proposed works will be provided as part of the ongoing community consultation process for the Masterplan.

It is anticipated that monitoring will be completed and a report on the results provided to Council in the next six weeks.

Council has already received early results from the first round of monitoring. Initial gas monitoring showed that surface gas levels were within normal limits. Groundwater results are expected to be provided with the final report.

Information about the final results of the gas and groundwater monitoring will be made available on this page when they are received.

If you have questions about these works, please contact Council’s FS Garside project team on (02) 9806 5050.


Historic records show that FS Garside park, historically known as Macarthur Park, operated as a local landfill during the 1920s and early 1930s. It was converted for use as a soccer field by placing a deep compacted soil layer over the landfill and planting a grass layer over the capped landfill site.

In May 2019, Council commissioned soil investigations at the site as part of its planned works to upgrade community and recreational facilities provided in North Granville.

Consistent with its former use as a rubbish tip, soil test results indicate some areas of the park contain materials (currently buried beneath the soil) that may pose a risk to public health and safety if disturbed.

As a precautionary safety measure, Council has now closed these areas to prevent public access and minimise the risk of soil disturbance.

The NSW Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) has also advised Council it now considers FS Garside Reserve to be a James Hardie Legacy Site.

Test results

Asbestos air quality monitoring results before, during and after the testing were within normal levels.

Soil testing has confirmed that asbestos and other contaminants are present in the soils underneath the reserve.

As a precautionary safety measure, areas within FS Garside have been closed.

Council will continue to seek advice from specialists to secure the most appropriate treatment for the site and treatment will be carried out as part of the planned Masterplan and park improvement works. Masterplan works are expected to commence in 2020.

Further information about the Masterplan and the proposed upgrades planned for the reserve is available from North Granville Community Facilities Masterplan.

For further information, please contact Council’s FS Garside project team on (02) 9806 5050.