A Welcome from the Colorado Springs - Bankstown Committee Chair
The long-standing relationship between Bankstown, Australia and Colorado Springs was born in a joint appreciation of athletic excellence during the 2000 Olympic Games, held in Sydney, Australia. Since the establishment as sister cities in 2001, our two cities have engaged in a variety of cultural exchanges. With a strong foundation of a shared passion for both the arts and athleticism, we hope to continue to maintain this important friendship with the vibrant and bustling city of Bankstown. Thank you for your interest!
Chair, Colorado Springs - Bankstown Program
Bankstown is a suburb of south-western Sydney, in the state of New South Wales, Australia. Bankstown is located 20 kilometres south-west of the Sydney central business district and is the administrative centre of the local government area of the City of Bankstown.
Prior to European settlement, Cumberland Plains Woodland occupied much of the area. Turpentine ironbark forest covered much of what is now Bankstown. The land was occupied by the Bediagal people. Their land bordered the Dharawal and the Darung people. The Aboriginal inhabitants strongly opposed the European settlers. The resistance ceased after a number of their leaders were killed or imprisoned in 1816. In that year an epidemic broke out amongst the native people which reduced the Aboriginal populations, this also contributed to the end of their resistance.
In 1795, Matthew Flinders and George Bass explored up the Georges River for about 20 miles beyond what had been previously surveyed, and reported favourably to Governor Hunter of the land on its banks. Hunter examined the country himself, and established one of the pioneer colonies there, called Bank's Town, today written as one word Bankstown.
Hunter named it in honour of botanist Sir Joseph Banks, who travelled to Australia with Captain James Cook in 1770. The area of first European settlement along the river has been partially preserved as part of the Mirambeena Regional Park. The Bankstown City area includes large areas of the Georges River National Park.
One hundred years after its naming, Bankstown was proclaimed a municipal district on 9 September 1895. At this time there was a feeling of impending growth which was further strengthened by the promise of increased railway extensions. Municipalities that were already constituted became ambitious, and, in 1894, both Enfield and Auburn Councils announced their intention to absorb Bankstown as part of their own municipalities. However, a petition was organised and signed by 300 residents resulting in Bankstown retaining its individual status. And on 9 September 1895 it was proclaimed a municipal district. The first election was held on 2 November 1895. With 884 electors on the roll, 112 people voted to cast a total of 213 votes. Each ratepayer was entitled to 1.4 votes according to the assessed value of his property. Women were not allowed to vote at this stage.
The first town hall and Council Chambers were built in 1898 on the northern side of the Hume Highway (Liverpool Road), near Rookwood Road (site of the Three Swallows Hotel). The council chambers were relocated to a new building in South Terrace (now Old Town Centre Plaza) in June 1918. The building still stands and now has a shopping arcade running through it.
Bankstown Council relocated to its third premises in 1963 when the Civic Centre that is located on the corner of Chapel Road and The Mall was constructed. It included the Council Chambers or ‘Roundhouse’, as it’s called and is still in use today as an administration building. The current town hall was built in 1973. The administration building was destroyed by fire on 1 July 1997. Council offices relocated to Bankstown Civic Tower (the blue tower) in 1999 and on 13 June 2000 Bankstown’s now popular Central Park, where the former administration building once stood, was officially declared Paul Keating Park. On 27 May 1980, during a visit by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, Bankstown was accorded city status. Read the entire Wikipedia
The Acer Stadium in Bankstown
Old Town Centre Plaza in Bankstown
In addition to being the location of the US Olympic Committee headquarters for the 2000 Olympics, the city was the site of the cycling events for the games in the coliseum pictured here. The idea of a sister city relationship with Colorado Springs grew out of this contact because the US Olympic Headquarters is located in Colorado Springs.
IF YOU SUPPORT THE WORK THAT THE BANKSTOWN CITY PROGRAM IS DOING FOR THE CITY OF COLORADO SPRINGS, PLEASE CONSIDER MAKING A DONATION TODAY. YOUR CHARITABLE GIFT IS TAX DEDUCTIBLE. THANK YOU FOR YOUR GENEROUS SUPPORT!