Mordialloc Beaumaris Conservation League – Minutes – 4th December 2002

A Happy New Year to our Loyal Members! Let’s hope that 2003 improves as the year progresses because the beginning does not augur well with bushfires and drought in Australia.

Council Elections

An important reminder that Council elections are due in March. Ward boundaries have changed with Long Beach now split between four wards. Cr Petchey’s ward now includes Mordialloc, under threat from high rise, high density development in and around the shopping precinct. Crs Petchey, van Klaveren and Shew are aware of the pro-development lobby in Council and without, and have worked to ameliorate the worst features of the proposed Mordialloc activity centre part of the State Government’s high density plans for 104 Metropolitan suburbs. Vote wisely for environmentally aware candidates.

Mordialloc Structure Plan

Following pressure from the community, Council staff reluctantly agreed to hold a public meeting, Dec. 4th in the Alan McLean Hall. The opportunity was used by staff to promote four storey development in the study area. Local residents are opposed to high density development in their neighbourhood but developers and real estate agents present could see dollar signs flashing before their eyes. At present development occurring in the study area is expensive, up-market. Affordable housing is not being provided in the activity centres, and despite a glut of rental property, there are “Hundreds of Kingston residents homeless” according to welfare groups. (Leader Dec.2 2002.)

Green Wedge

The Green Wedge Coalition surveyed 20 electorates prior to the State election in November and plan to survey council candidates in the forthcoming council elections in March. Submissions to Melbourne 2030 close February 14th. Local residents concerned about medium density over-development intensifying in Kingston should express their opinion in writing to the Department of Infrastructure forthwith. While protecting the green wedge is a worthy aim, the trade-off unfortunately, is spelt out by professional planners who state that, “the burden of growth of the urban fabric is going to fall in activity centres. That means Mordialloc, Chelsea and 104 other metropolitan suburbs designated as activity centres. At the same time those residents who live in inner suburbs with a heritage listing are pro- tected, and even outer suburban areas are demanding protection of their “country style” ambience. While we would like to protect our “coastal village ambience” our Strategic Planners are seeking to weaken the Neighbourhood Character element of ResCode thus further reducing any opportunity to preserve the character of our coastal villages.

Timber Yard Rezoning

The timber yard in Park Street has been rezoned as part of the Mordialloc Structure Plan to allow for three storey residential development if approved. David E. pointed out that if this development proceeds, it will preclude the possibilty of a third rail line being installed in the event of a. public transport is up-graded and there is a greater demand for this form of transport and b if Hasting port facilities become the alternative to channel deepening in Port Phillip Bay.

The Agnew Report

Glen reports that many of the public launching ramps on the eastern side of Port Phillip ay are unusable because of sanding or silting up. Dredging to remove the sand or silt adds to the problem of sedimentation and silting on the reefs. Glen has videos revealing outflow of sediment from the Yarra impacting on beaches to the south and has shown the videos when invited to speak at clubs and associations.

The Herrick Report

Parkdale journalist, Andrew, had an excellent feature article in the Age, January 23rd arguing that the 600,000 people visiting Rickett’s Point Marine Park rockpools “must be educated about its fragile environment.” While the EPA claims that Port Phillip Bay water quality is “generally good”, Dr John Kowarsky, environmental scientist, claims that the EPA’s data on bay water quality is “presented to give it the best spin”. According to the CSIRO Mordialloc Creek is “another source of pollution discharging hazardous chemicals from the Dandenong Valley into the bay including eight tonnes of lead a year.. Mussels tested in the vicinity of the creek in the mid-1990s “were found to have twice the safe level of heavy metals for human consumption.” Bayside council’s environmental coordinator confirms Glen’s findings that “sediment from the Yarra is a real problem as it is tested for toxin in silt samples.”

Port Phillip Bay

Penny was to contact PPCC President about Kingston Council’s proposal to deposit boulders on the beach at Charman Road to prevent sand depletion. Stephen monitored the dumping of the rocks and will report on the success or otherwise. Beaumaris cliffs are eroding, natural process, but causing some residents concern.

Beware Tree Vandals At Work

Mordialloc Beaumaris Conservation League Inc.

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