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Confirmed: North Sydney’s historic PCYC to be replaced by new Ambulance station.

Published On: November 2, 2023

North Sydney’s PCYC has been sold to the NSW Government and will become an Ambulance station.


North Sydney’s PCYC members say they are “devastated” after learning the 70-year-old club will be demolished to make way for an ambulance station.

The news was confirmed by Minister for Health Ryan Park on Thursday, who said the NSW Government had purchased the Falcon St site for an undisclosed sum.

The PCYC has been located on Falcon St since 1953 and this years celebrates 70 years.

“The new North Sydney Ambulance Station will support local paramedics to provide the best emergency medical care now and into the future,” Mr Park said.

“Health Infrastructure and NSW Ambulance carried out a thorough evaluation of the site to ensure the location best meets the needs of the local community and our emergency ambulance operations and paramedic staff.

“This new North Sydney Ambulance Station will bolster emergency care on the Lower North Shore and provide a first-class workplace for local paramedics.”

The club has an active membership of 1500, half of them local kids.

With a membership of 1500, the North Sydney Police Boys Club serves the community with programs ranging from gymnastics to boxing and safe driving courses.

The not-for-profit hub is dedicated to empowering young people through personal development in partnership with members of the NSW Police Youth and Crime Prevention Command.

North Sydney PCYC volunteer Chy Chuawiwat said local kids have been “abandoned” by the NSW Government decision.

Boxing coach and North Sydney PCYC volunteer Chy Chuawiwat told Mosman Collective he is devastated by the decision to bulldoze a lower north shore “institution”.

“I have been a member since 1978 and know first-hand the impact this club has had on thousands of kids,” he said.

“The PCYC is vital to supporting our youth’s mental health – and fitness.”

The North Sydney PCYC has trained many Australian sports people over its long history.

He said the NSW Government had effectively abandoned youth on the lower north shore.

“Where are the kids supposed to go now?” he said.

North Sydney Mayor Zoe Baker told Mosman Collective that Council had been blindsided by the shock decision.

“On 20 October 2023, I wrote to the Chair of the PCYC Board to express shock and concern to learn that the PCYC not only contemplated but undertook, under the cover of confidentiality, to sell the PCYC site at Falcon Street, Cammeray without undertaking any consultation with the PCYC membership, users, Council nor the community,” Mayor Baker said.

“It is extraordinary that in considering the future of the site, the PCYC Board did not contemplate discussions with Council to ascertain the need that the Club serves nor the potential for acquisition to enable continuity of service to the North Sydney and broader community. Such consultation may have offered alternative solutions to the sale to the NSW Ambulance Service.”

“The Falcon Street PCYC site serves a vital role in our community providing a place for young people and adults to gather for sport, recreation and mentoring. The martial arts and boxing programmes, in particular, as well as the gym, are much loved programmes that contribute to physical and mental wellbeing within our community. The loss of this space and the programmes will be devastating.”

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Shane Heal with PCYC kids in the early 2000s.

Mario Fenech with North Sydney PCYC members.

Over 300 locals attended a meeting last month to discuss potential redevelopment.

“And now our biggest fear has come true,” Mr Chuawiwat said.

“We thought the PCYC might get a fresh coat of paint for our 70th birthday, but they’ve, decided to nuke us instead.”

“It’s a disgrace.”

“The club has been part of our social fabric for 70 years,” Member for North Shore Felicity Wilson told Mosman Collective.

North Sydney’s PCYC was founded in 1953 and was hailed as one of Australia’s most modern facilities, with 3000 lower north shore boys signing up before the front doors even opened.

Over the years, the club has trained sporting champions like Kostya Tszyu, Mario Fenech and Greg Florimo.

The club’s Dojo serves as a magnet for boxers young and old, who train at the PCYC 7-days a week.

Member for North Shore, Felicity Wilson, told Mosman Collective while she welcomed a new ambulance station on the lower north shore there is some doubt around the Falcon St site.

“Questions remain as to the appropriateness of the location, as experts had identified Cremorne as the priority for this new station, noting existing ambulance stations at Naremburn and Artarmon, with the nearest station to the east in Balgowlah,” Ms Wilson said.

“I have sought an urgent briefing on the detailed analysis and assurances that this relocation away from Cremorne will still meet the needs of our community east of the Warringah Freeway in responding to callouts because we know that in emergencies, seconds matter.

“The PCYC has been part of the social fabric of our local community since 1953. I imagine this will be difficult for the 1500 North Sydney PCYC members and the many organisations and community members who pass through their doors. I’ve sought advice on the future plans for existing services and any impacts to external providers using the facilities.”

Young boxers photographed at the PCYC in the 1970s.

The NSW Health Minister’s office said consultations with the community and residents will be carried out in the coming months, with the project’s next steps including design development, prior to seeking planning approval.

NSW Health Infrastructure will work with the PCYC to facilitate a suitable handover, and construction time frames will be determined as the project progresses.

“Our paramedics will have a purpose-built station to help them deliver the best possible emergency and mobile medical care when and where needed,” Minister Ryan said.

North Sydney PCYC on Falcon St.

The site, which has good access to the major road network, is ideally suited to form part of the ambulance station network and the emergency ambulance response times in the North Sydney area.

“Now that the sale to the Ambulance Service has been confirmed, [North Sydney Council] will urge NSW Health to include a community facility within the new development to serve the significant need for the recreation facilities and programmes offered for youth in the North Sydney and surrounding local government areas,” Mayor Baker said.

The Falcon St station is being delivered as part of the NSW Government’s $488.8 million NSW Ambulance Infrastructure Program, the Health Minister said.

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We Love Local: Third time is a charm for Jimmy’s Fruit Shop on Avenue Rd.
Trick or Treat: Mosman’s best Halloween photos. See our spooktacular photo gallery!

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