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Southbank Residents’ Group

18 Sep 2012

Planning for planning

The Future Melbourne Committee has met and discussed the C-171 Planning Amendment Scheme, which will be sent to the Minister of Planning, Matthew Guy, for his blessing. Sadly though we don’t believe the City of Melbourne is backing the community stand regarding the separation between towers (residents would like 24m v 10m proposed).

However, we praise them for seeking mandatory heights in some areas, such as the Southbank Village, among other things.

We now have to wait and see what this amendment will look like at the end. I can only say thanks to all those residents who have invested their time in becoming experts in this matter and who have constantly raised the concerns of the community in council meetings and at every available opportunity. Not an easy tasks for too few people, who have kept up with the complexity of the topic and the tight deadlines for submissions, while juggling full time jobs in some cases.

While we wait for the outcome of this long process, SRG focus moves to the next issue of concern, traffic congestion & noise, which seems to be getting worse. I have written to the City of Melbourne regarding this issue and I have received some vague responses from the Lord Mayor.

Some key issues affecting the area are: traffic congestions in Queensbridge, City Road and Power Street. The Lord Mayor replied to SRG’s letter regarding this issue and advised that most of the congestion is related to traffic exiting the CBD and that new developments in Queensbridge Street would make up only a small percentage of overall traffic volumes. It is like pouring more water into a glass already full and thinking that the water is not going to spill.

Another issue is having placarded trucks in the area which are a great contributor of noise, particularly at the entry of the Burnley tunnel. The answer from the Lord Mayor is that this can’t be addressed, as there is not a current viable alternative route for these vehicles. I think the problem here is the lack of planning and a real search for alternative options. This is an unfair situation for those residents living in the Mantra building and Eureka Tower.

While I do understand some issues may take time to be resolved, given the various authorities and bodies involved when it comes to traffic congestion and noise, I would like to see the City of Melbourne take proactive action to address these concerns and look after its rate payers.

A good way to start is by calling for a traffic and movement needs analysis for the area prior to elections this year. This will ensure that future developments go hand by hand with planning and the appropriate infrastructure required.

If you would like to be part of Southbank Residents Group, contact us on srgi@2000.gmail.com.

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