Published in The Beast, January 2016
A congestion tax will be imposed upon swimmers at the increasingly popular Clovelly Beach in an effort to ease traffic flow during early morning peak hours.
Swimmers will be forced to pay an undisclosed fee in order to access the water from 5 – 7am under a proposal from Randwick City Council.
“Clovelly Beach resembles George Street at certain times of the morning…” read a statement from Randwick City Council “…and we would like to ease pressure on all users, the marine environment – and the grouper”
Any swimmer entering the water from either the sand or the concrete will be required to pass through electronic motion gates to be installed at various parts of the beach. The gates will scan an electronic bracelet, like an e – tag, which will alleviate the need to extract money from speedos.
Various details have emerged, including a possible reduction in fees for those who live within a 100 metre radius of the beach, and a higher fee for anyone wearing running shoes while swimming.
Critics of the plan questioned the effect on pedestrians and the lack of information on how the money will be spent.
The Council explained that revenue will be used for much needed banners along the beach at certain times of the year, and that pedestrians will not be inconvenienced.
“Pedestrians can use the existing paths which do not pass through the motion gates, or the new bridge which will be constructed from north to south across the breakwater” said a Council member.
Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore caught news of the plan and complimented Randwick City Council on its initiative.
“We praise the Council for their forward thinking. A congestion tax for the Sydney CBD has been talked about for many years…” she said, before adding;
“To assist with construction of the bridge, we can offer parts of the old monorail”.
A ‘friendly’ local, who lives within 100 metres of the beach, welcomed any move that reduced the number of people at ‘his’ backyard pool.