Local sporting groups, residents and visitors can look forward to a refreshed clubhouse and upgraded amenities at Robin Thomas Reserve as part of the Parramatta Light Rail project’s latest improvement works. 

 

What’s happening? 

Transport for NSW is delivering a new cultural and civic precinct in the northern portion of Robin Thomas Reserve, which is located on the corner of Harris and George streets, Parramatta. 

The works mark the second phase of improvement delivered by the project, following the first phase of improvements completed in 2021.  

The latest program of improvement works will deliver: 

  • a new amenities building (clubhouse) 
  • barbecue facilities 
  • outdoor seating and picnic tables 
  • landscaping and tree-planting  
  • the construction of a new car park. 

Transport for NSW has engaged Diona Ward Joint Venture to complete this work.   

 

Graphic showing that works are at the site mobilisation and fencing stage

What is the Status of works?

Construction is underway on the project, following site mobilisation in November 2023. 

While completion is expected in 2024, there are unique environmental and construction challenges to overcome to preserve and maintain the NSW state-heritage listed site. This includes carrying out sensitive excavation of the site. 

Archaeological discoveries, protective treatments, investigations and heritage approvals may shift the delivery timeframes. Transport for NSW is committed to restoring this valuable precinct to the community as early as possible, while prioritising the care and consideration necessary to carry out these works. 

About Robin Thomas Reserve 

Robin Thomas Reserve is located within Parramatta CBD next to James Ruse Reserve. It is used for football in winter and cricket in summer.  

Robin Thomas Reserve is listed on the State Heritage register. The area was the site of the Parramatta Sand Body and the circa 1790 Military Barracks and Soldiers Garden. 

 

Earlier improvement works 

In 2021, the NSW Government carried out significant improvements to Robin Thomas Reserve as part of Parramatta Light Rail Stage 1 construction. 

Those improvements included reconfigured football fields, a new cricket pitch, goal posts, footpath, fences, pedestrian lighting, upgraded sports lighting, and landscaping, and have delivered significant benefits for the local community and recreational users.    

With those improvements completed, Transport for NSW is working in collaboration with City of Parramatta Council to deliver the next stage of upgrades: the restoration of the Reserve’s cultural and civic precinct.  

Tobacco pipe discovered at Robin Thomas Reserve

A heritage-considered design 

Heritage preservation has been a key focus of the project throughout the design and planning of the improvement works.  

The project has incorporated design elements and materials to reflect the area’s significance as the site of the Parramatta Sand Body and the circa 1790 Military Barracks and Soldiers Garden.  

Transport for NSW is taking active measures to minimise impacts to the existing land, with the majority of construction happening above ground level to minimise land disturbances. For example, raised garden beds and footpaths aim to minimise impacts to the land and existing mature trees. 

Right: Parramatta Light Rail is committed to preserving the area’s history and heritage. 

 

Environmental considerations 

The three large fig trees and cork oak tree at Robin Thomas Reserve are being retained and preserved as part of the improvement works, and have been integrated with the new design so they can be enjoyed by the community for generations to come. 

Artist's impression of the future amenities building

Community consultation 

Transport for NSW has engaged with local residents, businesses, City of Parramatta Council, Registered Aboriginal Parties, the Greek Orthodox Church, local community and sporting groups, and other interested parties during the design and planning of the Robin Thomas Reserve improvement works.  

Transport for NSW will continue to engage with the community and stakeholders during construction via project update email alerts, newsletters, community notifications, website updates and social media.   

Every effort has been made to minimise the impact on nearby roads, homes and businesses during construction, and Transport for NSW thanks the community for its patience while the works are carried out. 

 

Layout plan and artist impressions 

An artist impression of the new clubhouse being delivered can be seen to the left. Note the image may differ slightly from the final design. 

 

Contact us 

For more information about the Robin Thomas Reserve improvement works, please Contact Us