Mordialloc Beaumaris Conservation League – Minutes – 2nd May 2018

June Activities

Although no meeting was held in June members were involved in two major State Government projects of an extremely controversial nature. These are Level Crossing removals for Bonbeach and Edithvale Stations and the Mordialloc four lane. 9 km freeway elevated to cross over Governor Road, Waterways wetlands and Mordialloc Creek before joining Springvale Road. This road will also cross through the south west corner of Braeside Wetlands thus impacting two major wetland habitats frequented by migratory and endangered bird species. Groundwater in this low-lying area, part of the former Carrum Carrum swamp, may be contaminated by construction work at both Mordialloc Creek and at Edithvale Station when the acid sulphate soil is exposed to oxygen and endangering the water quality in the Edithvale Seaford Wetlands. An Environment Effects Statement (EES) was required based on the likely impact that polluted groundwater may have on the Edithvale Seaford wetlands thus making it unsuitable for bird life resulting in a loss of Ramsar listing of the wetlands.

Residents Against Mordialloc Freeway

RAMF consist of residents and concerned environmentalists who are not convinced that a fifth major road is required leading to Mornington Peninsula. There are alternatives such as lanes added to Springvale Road in the grassy paddock opposite Waterways residential estate and Richfield retirement Village – or extending the rail line from Frankston to Mornington. Instead residents will be faced with an elevated four lane ( maybe six lanes in future) freeway built across the open wetlands presently peaceful habitat for birds and a calm retreat for residents.

Level Crossing Removals

This project also kept environment and resident groups busy during June. Although two options are offered to communities it is usually the loudest and largest groups that are heard especially if political advantage is involved in Most residents don’t like the look of the elevated rail line and think it will devalue their property whereas the trench method may create flooding & subsidence problems in these suburbs. Groundwater impact was the most important factor under discussion at the Panel Hearing 4″-1″ June at Patterson River Golf Club. It was fortunate that the Friends of Edithvale Seaford wetlands were able to acquire two excellent expert witnesses:- Scott Seymour, for many years an engineer with Melbourne Water and extremely knowledgeable about groundwater. Supporting Scott was Sean Dooley an expert on bird migratory habits. Big questions remain about the success of the horizontal pipe in a trench method of dealing with flooding and contaminated groundwater.

Regent’s Park

A section of this park was set aside as a memorial garden for a great conservationist, Jack Cuthbertson. It had developed into a small indigenous area with mature Banksia trees. However approval has been given to take this area for two netball courts. Unfortunately there is a report that a similar situation has developed at Bonbeach where an informal play area has been confiscated without informing residents, for once again,netball courts. One courageous resident has decided to go to VCAT about this matter.

Dent’s Paddock

Dent’s Paddock is threatened with a 14 unit development on an undisturbed site with a variety of indigenous trees and vegetation. This site between Edithvale and Chelsea was declared short of Open Space in a Kingston Council survey therefore would be ideal for retention as local residents desire. Council wishes to green Kingston as part of its climate change policy. 19 Tarella Road is ideal to do just that whereas many green areas such as Regents park and Bonbeach are being concreted over for sporting activity Residents plan to go to VCAT with this issue also

The Tavern

A three level gambling and food venue open from 8am to lam with music has been given approval by the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation. Rejecting a Council authorised study of the impact of alcohol and gambling on local residents the Commission dismisses claims that this venue will have any harmful effects on cor a ment

Frankston Hub

Frankston for Environment Victoria at 130-132 Young Street has been organised ahead of the next election. Apparently very successful last election.

Dog Off Least Beach

Dogs off leash beach at Edithvale ? What do people think about this 2 Is it just in winter months or all the year round? One of our members is concerned about large dogs and small children on the beach at the same time- or even other small dogs. Please let us know.

Community Day at Braeside Park

Organised by RAMF with speakers and a barbecue. Speakers included Viki (BSC) Diane,Nina and Lewis,a bird expert. Crystal Legacy, lecturer in Urban Planning at Melbourne Uni,had travelled by Train and bicycle to attend the community day and, as usual, what she had to say about transport alternatives was inspirational. After the barbecue Lewis invited everyone to walk with him to the wetlands to see the bird life. Sadly a considerable slice of the south west corner of the Braeside wetlands on Governor road will be taken for the beginning of the elevated four lane freeway over Governor Road, the Waterways wetlands and Mordialloc Creek.

Expert Witnesses

Edithvale Seaford Wetlands friends were fortunate in having Dr John Stone a Senior Lecturer in Transport Planning, Melbourne School of Design, Melbourne Uni support the Friends submission at the hearing. Dr Stone works with Dr Ian Woodcock, Lecturer in Urban Planning and Transport RMIT. Dr Woodcock has spoken at a number of local meetings when level crossing removals were first mentioned. He supports the elevated rail line model as being less expensive and causing less environmental damage than the trench model.

Mordialloc Beaumaris Conservation League Inc.

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