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Friday, November 14, 2008
Sydney Airport - part 2 - 1940 vs 1954
Starting from the north, Ricketty Street bridge is just such a great name that I have to include it. It spans one of only 3 industrial canals in Australia, and is still worth a visit today.
The original goods railway line is shown in yellow, with the northward diversion in pink and orange. I have shown where the suburb of Lauriston Park was, and Ascot racecourse in relation to the concrete (main) east-west runway (in pink) that was laid by 1954. To build that and the new but then-shorter north-south runway involved diverting and filling the course of the Cooks River (in blue). That was quite a project. Imagine trying to move a river now - you'd need to be pretty sure about how the changes would impact the local ecology, for starters.
Anyway, the Bonnie Doon Golf links in the north-west corner were replaced with what later became the International terminal and the cargo precinct. More recreation grounds were lost - a polo field, a cricket ground and another golf links to the south. And the main runway now ended where Ascot racecourse was in 1940. Muddy creek was also shortened in the whole process of moving the Cooks River.
The dotted black line shows the new General Holmes Drive, replacing the old road, the bridge and Government Rd, all marked in brown. Some residences were left stranded by these changes, particularly those near the southern end of the short 16/34 runway. These houses were "on" General Holmes Drive until the mid-1960s, when the road was diverted into a cutting to the south and bridged-over with the extended north/south runway.