Kingston Environment Groups Network’s next meeting 7th October 7pm Presentation by Melbourne Water – Waterways and Wetlands Team! A long awaited opportunity to discuss water quality in Mordialloc Creek and Bay. also the realisation of acid soil problems in the Bayside/Kingston areas. Kingston Foreshore Reference Group meets Wednesday 20th October at Brindisi Street. Mentone 6pm. Channel deepening on the Agenda? Open Day at the Grange Saturday October 9th 9.30am to noon.
Protest at Parliament over Mitcham’s Twin towers 12 noon Tuesday October 5.2004
The Panel Hearing into Channel Deepening begins again 5th October at Nauru House 11th level. Hearings begin usually at 10am and try to finish each day at 4.35pm. Hearings are open to the public and well worth attending to listen to presentations and questioning of expert witnesses.
Submissions have been sent to: Kingston’s Draft Affordable & Appropriate Housing Strategy, Kingston Traffic Study, Port Phillip & Westernport Catchment Management Authority, Open Space Review, Mordialloc Structure Plan. Nina & Brian e-mailed and faxed their submission after working on it while on holiday in the UK! That’s dedication to the cause!!
Planning Issues in Kingston are still causing angst amongst residents-open space and residential amenity is disappearing. The Planning Minister’s offer of Interim height limits to Councils who have commenced their Structure Plans, may not save Kingston’s five Activity Centres from high rise because so far Mordialloc and Highett are the only centres to have completed Structure Plans. Chelsea’s plan has not been commenced and there is already an application for a four storey development in Station Street. The Save Albert Park group, in their newsletter, refer to a book by Dr Mark Lowe, Prof. Dept Communications, Uni of Ottowa entitled “Neoliberal Power Politics and the Contraversial Siting of the Australian Grand Prix Motorsport event in an Urban Park”. His theme in part is the ‘use of Albert Park Reserve as privatization in the service of commercial interests with costs borne by the taxpayer.” This has significance for Kingston residents where there is a tendency to sell off parkland rather than increase parkland to compensate for the overdevelopment of sites with loss of open space. Commercialisation of the foreshore for commercial activity is still likely in Kingston.
Planning Issues Continued
The Town and Country Planning Association reports on The Charter for Planning. Planning academics from Melbourne University co-ordinated an independent panel report on the proposal with contributions from SOS, the City of Yarra, TCPA. The report, Inner Urban Conservation and Development, edited by Miles Lewis was launched in August. However, it must be said that academics and bureaucrats tend to concentrate on the inner suburb planning issues rather than those afflicting middle ring suburbs. Do they know we exist out here?
An excellent turn-out of 25-30 people on National Tree Day to plant hundreds of trees, shrubs and grasses as well as ground cover on the north bank of the creek opposite the Jack Grut Reserve. Some newcomers were interested in the reason for planting indigenous species, local biodiversity habitat corridors and much else. The next working bee to be held in October.
Friends also planted hundreds of shrubs, grasses and groundcover on National Tree Day. They are seeking funding for a timber enclosure for the new water pump. This matter was discussed at the Mordialloc Village Committee and regrettably, competed with an application from Parkdale Tennis Club which has access to membership fees, unlike volunteer Friends groups.
Peter Scullin Reserve
Work is proceeding on the tennis court now car park. There has been some landscaping in the car park. The pier end of the road from Pier Road is being grassed and members are concerned about the plan to link the foreshore and Scullin Resrve without removing under storey needed to act as a windbreak for visitors using the park.
Open Space Review
MBCL and KCEC members attended three meetings held in the north, south and middle Kingston wards where consultants sought residents views on the need for parks and the e of use made of small parks especially. There appeared to be unanimous support for the retention of parks in the face of extreme pressure from the M2030 strategy to increase residential density throughout the city. It was felt that Kingston should be able to show a net increase in open space each year to cover the increase in population, and preferably using the 2.4ha per 1000 people. Chicquita Park, being in one of the areas under discussion, was once again claimed to be a major asset for the Mentone area so must not be sold for housing.
Panel Hearing commenced on September 21st and will continue until December 2nd to enable the Panel Members to hear over 200 submissions and 21 Expert Witness reports for the Port of Melbourne. The Environment Management Plan is still incomplete as are many of the studies possibly because the Brack’s Government demanded that the Environment Effects Statement be ‘fast-tracked’ so that dredging can commence in winter 2005. The Dutch dredging company Royal Boskales, has been engaged and will be instrumental in planning how the dredging is carried out. The POMC had not considered the impact on the Newport Power Station of dredging the shipping channel at the mouth of the Yarra. The impact of the Yarra plume carrying toxic dredge spoil sediment down the eastern side of the Bay to Rickett’s point has not been considered in the Expert Witness reports so far.
Photopoint Monitoring of the creek and foreshore is due to commence this month.
Absent members are still enjoying their OS travels and will no doubt have plenty to relate on their return.