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Montague Community Alliance

10 Jul 2018

Montague Community Alliance Image

Is having no third-party rights the new black?

Did you know that most readers of this great local paper have no third-party rights?

I wonder, dear readers is Capital City zoning helpful to you, the residents and business owners? Did you know that we can’t influence our environment or access direct information of what is occurring regarding the development and liveability of our neighbourhoods? Yes, that is what Capital Zoning means.

A question to the powers that be: If this lack of third-party rights does help us, wouldn’t it be useful to know how? Maybe someone could let us know … OH that’s right, you don’t have to, because we have no rights!

Before you get snippy with us, I doubt that anyone wants to stop these areas being developed. We are all experiencing the exponential increase in numbers of people, dogs, strollers, bicycles and cars. We know we have a great location with great infrastructure and recognise that these are very attractive places to live.

The evidence we have at the Montague Community Alliance is that we are comfortable for this urban growth and we welcome new neighbours, as long as we can be involved with decisions that affect our futures.

And believe me, we understand that we can’t be nimbys. We know we need to share our fabulous locations, welcome new neighbours and businesses with good grace that I believe our community in Montague already demonstrates.

So … if we understand that and act with integrity and good grace, why can’t those who have power over our environments, neighbourhoods, noise, dust and blocking of sun show the same courtesies to us?

What is known, is that however much we tap-dance and write polite letters to the State Planning Department (please note, incredibly it was worse under the previous incumbents – Matthew Guy blocked me on Twitter for asking for information about developments in Montague), and to the City of Port Phillip and politely ask, “can we talk about how we could all work together?” NOTHING comes back.

We have even offered our applied experiences of creating neighbourhood agreements with a great developer BPM that really worked for all parties and could for many more.

It does not help that information capital is lost every time a new officer or senior advisor leaves and a new incumbent takes up a position – yes I’m talking about you CEOs, planning officers and ministerial advisors.

Our questions are: Has the last five years of our volunteerism to assist our community been for nothing? Do you really care so little for us that we receive proforma letters without a human hand touching them? Or that we work tirelessly to “influence” you to understand us and you toss it away as a nuisance. We are getting tired of trying – is that what you want? Hmmm … Let’s all watch this space.

Now on a more positive note to our monthly - Meet a Montaguan:

Who are you?

Sara, resident of Montague for the past 10 years, mum of one precocious three-year-old!

What brought you to live or work in the Montague Precinct (MP) of South Melbourne?

Luck! My now husband and I were looking to move from our small studio apartment in North Melbourne back in 2008 and through friends we found our home on Gladstone St.

What are the most interesting things about living in MP?

Montague has a long and interesting history which many in the wider community isn’t aware of. There have been residents living here since the mid 1800s despite the area being known as an industrial space.  It is also interesting to see diversity in the types of business that are here such as pubs, cafes, burger joints to advertising and PR agencies, mechanics and local brewers such as Westside Aleworks and Melbourne Moonshine.

How does living in Montague effect your quality of life, including your work?

We have been quite lucky to be able to easily commute to work without having to always depend on public transport.  I work locally so being able to walk or ride has been quite beneficial to my health and wallet!  Montague has also been, up until recently, a very quiet place to live considering its proximity to the city.

What are the challenges of living in MP?

With the new apartments being built there have been challenges with all facets of construction – noise, dirt, parking and disruptions with utilities such as water and electricity.  The lack of parking and the amount of traffic on the road particularly on Montague streets has increased dramatically in the last 12 months.

If you could change something about Montague life, what would it be?

Not so much change but continue to ensure that residents are involved in how the new Montague community will form.  Continue to develop relationships with local and state governments and establish residential agreements with developers so there is harmony during construction periods.

 

Trisha Avery

Convener

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