This morning, Police Minister Troy Grant criticised the City in the press for installing safety barriers in Martin Place. It is truly disappointing the Police Minister has politicised such an important issue of public safety, and accused the City of not consulting with police on the matter – that is patently false.
Please see below the City's response to the Minister, and click here to read email correspondence between City staff and NSW Police Counter Terrorism & Special Tactics Command that shows not only did we consult police on the matter, they advised the City not to install flower beds as planned, but rather stronger concrete barriers.
Of course the City of Sydney takes advice from NSW Police and state emergency services on issues of public safety – including the installation of bollards and barricades to block vehicle access and strengthen security in public spaces.
As part of our ongoing work to review and strengthen security in public spaces, the City has installed temporary barricades in Martin Place, between Phillip and Elizabeth Streets. This is not in response to any specific threat.
These barricades, and others being rolled out in the area, will be replaced with more permanent measures, such as bollards, garden beds or other landscaping features that both strengthen security and ensure our public spaces are attractive.
We will continue to work with NSW Police on reviewing public places of mass gathering, on City of Sydney land, to determine where additional bollards or barricades are required.
If the Minister believes the security measures are a bad idea, he should talk with his police force. The City would remove the barriers if Police advise us they are unnecessary.
Martin Place bollards
The claims that the City did not consult Police before installing temporary bollards are simply not true.
It is disappointing the Police Minister has politicised such an important issue of public safety.
The City has emails from NSW Police that confirm we consulted them about the barriers – on both the location and the type.
NSW Police confirmed that temporary measures should be installed in Martin Place.
They also recommended that concrete barricades be used, rather than the garden beds, as the concrete barricades have undergone impact testing.
Police then reviewed the layout of the barricades. The City also consulted with the NSW Fire Brigade.