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Southbank Residents’ Group

16 Oct 2012

SRG’s AGM will be held next Monday, October 22 at BOYD Community centre at 6.30 pm. I would like to invite all the members of the community who are concerned about Southbank’s future to come along and become part of the organisation. Why not consider becoming a volunteer!

It is important that as a community we raise our concerns together, rather than in isolation. Someone who works for the government once told me the problem with Southbank was that we did not make enough noise when we were unhappy about something, hence we were moved to the bottom of the to-do list most of the time. This is evident on the

planning and development front and also when it comes to traffic and noise issues, let alone the lack of a primary school issue that may not be sorted for another five years, if we are lucky.

Communication in vertical communities can be challenging and sometimes it can be hard to channel concerns in the right direction. Guess what? Our politicians know this and take advantage of it by doing the minimum required when it comes to our suburb.

Over the last fifteen years SRG has been asking for the same things over and over again, without luck and the things were once would’ve been nice to have, are now an urgent necessity (primary school, traffic improvement measures).

The highlight of this year for Southbank was the completion of the BOYD Community Centre. However, this did not just happen in the last couple of years. It was an initiative of our previous Lord Major (John So), who, more than six years ago set aside the site for this purpose. The process took a while and we finally finished with a wonderful space! As a result, we need to ensure now that our politicians understand what our suburb needs to support the expected growth in the area otherwise we will be chasing our tail all the time.

Let’s take advantage of the profile that SRG has and together as a community take it to the next level, use it to improve the communication channels between buildings and also between Southbank residents and the various government levels, so we are not at the bottom of the list anymore. I believe the way forward for SRG should include a coalition of management committees from buildings across the suburb, as they will be in the best position to talk on behalf of their residents. Having a small group of people trying to represent the view of the community when the same is not involved can be quite challenging and may not deliver the best results for Southbank.

The council elections are around the corner and I believe it will be a great opportunity for Southbank residents to measure the performance of our local politicians and ensure that the best people for the job are elected, not only for what they have done for Melbourne but for what they have done and can do for our suburb!

As I will be stepping down from presidency of SRG at the AGM I’d like to finish by saying it has been my pleasure to serve you all and I hope to see you at the AGM where will be introducing our new committee.

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