With Coffin Ed.
For many people, myself included, Taylor Square lost its cosmopolitan charm when Gilligan’s Island was denuded of its palm trees, assorted scrub and family of resident rats. Replaced with a lifeless grassy knoll it was no longer the perfect spot for the midday wine tasting with goon bags and bottles of Royal Reserve Port aplenty.
To add insult to injury a highly questionable ‘water feature’ was added to the square with fountains of water spurting from the ground without any warning. Rumour has it that Council bureaucrats, secreted in a covert Town Hall bunker controlled the watery barbs, targeting random passersby and local mendicants with a burst of unwanted colonic irrigation.
Meanwhile the once buzzing T2 nightclub at the end of the square was attracting both the wrath of local residents and the police as a supposed source of anti-social behaviour. In stepped the City Of Sydney Council with a cheque for $7.1 million and the popular nightspot was no longer.
That was around eight years ago and since then the T2 has been the focus of numerous grandiose suggestions as to what could actually be housed there. The Lord Mayor’s original plan for a $14 million bicycle hub drew a barrage of objections from non aligned councillors and last year the Council voted to sell the building – provided a suitable buyer could be found.
So what will the fate of the old T2 be – if it’s not flogged off, demolished and replaced with yet another horrible block of high rise apartments. Armed with a flagon of Royal Reserve Port I recently quizzed picnickers on Gilligans to come up with a shortlist of suggestions which I will soon be forwarding for Council consideration.
AN ALL WEATHER GILLIGANS: Sydney’s first indoor, all weather park complete with wall to wall AstroTurf, lilos and deck chairs, yoga mats and piped music from Andre Rieu 24/7. Pigeons and ibis would be encouraged to boost the ambience and whilst advertised as ‘alcohol free’ the odd tipple would be not be penalised.
AN URBAN PETTING ZOO: There’s hours of fun for kiddies, adults and hordes of tourists as this unique petting zoo offers a wonderful variety of urban critters including cockatoos, stray dogs, possums, foxes and feral cats (caged of course for safety reasons, but accessible with a back scratcher).
THE BEA MILES MUSEUM OF ECCENTRICITY: Colourful eccentrics have all but disappeared from our city streets but here’s a museum to celebrate the contribution of people such as Sandor Berger, Arthur Stace, the knife grinder and the immortal Bea Miles herself. If the Piccolo Bar does finally shut up shop in Kings Cross it could be moved and reassembled as a permanent reminder of Sydney’s once flourishing bohemia.
And perhaps the most sensible suggestion of them all.
A CAPSULE STYLE HOSTEL: Sydney already has its first Japanese style ‘capsule’ hotel in he CBD, but what about a similar set up for the homeless? The building could probably accommodate fifty of more capsules affording much needed accommodation, particular during the cold winter months.