Rare Event! A cancelled meeting due to lack of a quorum! A combination of illnesses, prior engagements and work commitments caused the cancellation.. Never-the-less much has happened in the intervening period. Important decisions will have to be made about the sale of parks, the bike path route and landscaping of the Peter Scullin Reserve. Once again Best Wishes to family members who are unwell.
Kingston Environment Groups Network meeting 6th October, 6.30pm at the Fujitsu Building – a presentation by Mike Hill on the Sustainability Accord. Waterkeepers Australia at the Green Building, 60 Leicester Street, Carlton Friday Nov 4 1.30pm 5pm. Worksop to explain the EPBC Act and how the referral and assessment process works. Union of Australian Women Saturday 22 October at Mordialloc Neighbourhood House, 2pm. Cost $5. Guest Speakers Caroline Hirsh and Ann Corcoran. Port Phillip Conservation Council AGM. 17 October. Guest Speaker – Doug Miller from DSE. A good opportunity for MBCL delegates to ask some pertinent questions about the proposed bike road on Kingston’ foreshore! Kingston Council have rejected a ‘back of kerb’ option according to the Leader. Watch For a forum organised by the Friends of Kingston towards the end of October when issues affecting residential amenity, sustainability, community involvement in effective decision making will be topics for discussion.
Two valuable reports have been released this month. They are The Expanding Urban Frontier: Urban Form in Melbourne’s Growth Corridors by Michael Buxton and Jan Scheurer and Sustainable Cities the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Environment and Heritage. The latter discusses such topics as Water, Building Design and Management, Transport and Urban Sprawl. Urban Sprawl is discussed also in the Buxton Report. However there is no easy answer to most of these issues. Unless the Government takes control of planning as they have done in the billion dollar re-development proposed for Dandenong. This takes planning out of the hands of local government and removes the right of third parties to object.
Environment Victoria’s Annual report commends people committed to speaking out for their local rivers. Should MBCL speak out about Mordialloc Creek?? Waterkeepers, of which MBCL is a member will provide additional support for river advocates according to the report.
Golf course and Resort Accommodation Keysborough
Despite a stern letter from Rob Hulls stating that the State Government is “committed to protection of Melbourne’s green wedges from inappropriate development” it appears that Dandenong Council was testing the water yet again. Mr Hulls concludes his letter “I will closely monitor the progress of the application and will take appropriate action if I believed that State planning is being compromised.”
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Letters received from Mara re drawing attention to traffic danger in White Street, Mordialloc especially to children attempting to cross the road to access local schools. Semi-trailers exiting the Parkdale Plaza into Melrose Street will increase the traffic hazard.
Letter to be sent to Stephen Hains seeking his assistance in having the wetlands monitored to assess their effectiveness in improving the water quality of Mordialloc Creek since Melbourne Water reports that the water quality in the Creek and Patterson River continues to be rated as Very Poor. Hain’s response will be discussed at June meeting.
Concrete Crushing Facilities Clarinda
As a result of Bill and Mary approaching the Leader articles have appeared in the Moorabbin Dandenong and Mordialloc Chelsea Leaders explaining the possible impact on ground and surface water from the contaminants contained in demolition material leaching from the stormwater ponds and groundwater in the sand quarries. The water in the ponds is to be used to prevent dust causing health problems in the surrounding residential, market gardens and schools abutting the facilities.
Council’s plan to formalise the sandy tracks on the cliff top at Mentone into a 4 metre wide shared bike path is meeting with alarm by walkers interviewed. A similar informal sandy track around the Bayside section of foreshore to Rickett’s Point is an example of the importance of retaining the Mentone cliff top path free of fast moving bicyles. As Bill said trying to mix people on one path with speeding cyclists doesn’t work. With the removal of foreshore vegetation for the 4 metre wide track, combined with Council’s outrageous changes to foreshore ‘management’,- removal of vegetation to provide views for priveleged Beach Road residents, the sandy track will be hotter in summer, more open to winds in winter, and lack the natural walking surface. MBCL’s preferred option for a bike path to serve as a commuter path, on the verge of Beach Road.extends the successful Bayside bike path. Unfortunately Vic Roads doesn’t favour a designated safe bike path on Beach Road.
Council’s Foreshore Management Policy
Letters have been sent to DSE Manager Coasts re the proposal to limit future planting on Kingston’s 13kms of foreshore to 2 metres to allow foreshore residents “their views” despite the fact that there is no legal entitlement to views. Letters have also been sent to politicians. The surveys carried out by the council consultant: have been biased by the selection of interviewees – those living only on the foreshore or Beach Road. Council plans in the next stage to interview builders and developers about foreshore vegetation!!! What next? Real estate agents?? A meeting with, and reference to, a former council employee’s species list, Mordialloc Flora, and the Botanicus 2000, study found 54 significant species on the cliff tops 16 of which are found only in this section of the foreshore. 21 of these species are regionally significant.
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Kyoto and the Environment Organised by Ann Corcoran, Federal Member for Isaacs Monday May 2005, 7.30pm Mentone RSL . Speakers:- Graeme Pearman and Anthony Albanese, Shadow Minister for Environment and Heritage.
Nominations for Kookaburra Awards are invited by Parks Victoria to raise awareness of the extent and importance of parks for healthy people and to recognise those volunteers who are committed to protection, conservation and development of the Victorian Parks system.
And don’t forget the Save the Bay Art Show opening 12 May 6.00pm to 8.00pm until 30 May. Opening hours daily 9am 5.30pm
AETA Australia – East Timor Association are urgently calling for letters to politicians about the Timor Sea Oil and Gas Issue. “Don’t Rob Their Future “Campaign.’
SPA Sustainable Population Australia meeting Saturday 7th May 2pm Henry George House 1/27 Hardware Lane, Melbourne Featuring Fossilgate – the connection between population numbers and oil supply as well as a film of an interview with Jenny Warfe about population growth and the effect on the democratic process and environmental amenity.
Panel Hearing concerning two concrete crushing facilities seeking approval to operate in Clarinda heard residents objections on grounds of the impact of dust and noise on the residential amenity of the area including a school and operating nurseries. MBCL submission raised issues about the impact on groundwater over-usage and possible contamination from the type of demolition material to be crushed e.g. concrete containing asbestos, lead paint and arsenic from timber demolition. Three major drains flowing into Mordialloc Creek flow through Delta and Alex Fraser sites. Settlement, Heatherton and Dunlops drains are already polluted according to the Kingston Industrial Stormwater Project. It was disappointing to hear EPA representatives dismissing the impact of pollution of ground and surface water as being of little significance claiming that water in the area could be classified as “segment B of SEPP(Groundwaters of Victoria) with the following beneficial uses: Potable mineral water supply….and Primary contact recreation!!
Channel Deepening Report
The Channel Deepening Report arrived finally – a massive document containing some astonish- ing revelations about the POMC’s Expert Witnesses less than expert reports. In effect they were told by the Panel to go away and try harder next time. Issues of concern were invited from submitters to be included in a supplementary EES to address the staggering environ- mental problems which exist.
Bicycle Path from Charman Road to Mordialloc Creek
Penny gave a report of the meeting at Council about the path and a lengthy discussion followed. Nina stated that the option of narrowing Beach Road (by replacing the section taken from the foreshore by Vic Roads in ‘988) has not been seriously considered by the consultant or council officers who are fixated- with the cliff top option. It was pointed out that the MBCL option for the verge of Beach Road path has been successfully constructed and used in both Mornington and Bayside. It is pointed out that surveillance is not such an issue if the path is on the verge of Beach Road rather than through the bushes on the cliff top. Object strongly to the suggestion from the BUGS rep to “remove the understorey for greater safety” !!. Jenny W. pointed out that 60% of native birds live in the under-storey and feed a metre from the ground. Jenny also reminded us that lights will be required if the path is on the cliff top whereas Beach Road lighting will suffice if the path is on the verge of the road. Regrettably the cliff top path was approved by Council April 26 – but the battle is far from over.
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Following KRAMMED’s success at VCAT with the decision to refuse a permit for 334-339 Station Street, Chelsea on grounds of density and poor design, Chairman O’Leary refused the proponent’s request to bring the fourth storey of 541 Main Street forward level with the third storey. Well done, Nina and Brian who were given permission to speak at the Hearing! Residents of Melrose Street are still waiting to learn the outcome of the Dan Murphy’s application to exit into their street. VCAT Hearing was in February.
Residential Zone 3
Residential Zone 3 submissions were due 31 March. Res 3 imposes a height limit of 9 metres or three storeys in Incremental Change Areas. If the proposed development has a pitched roof then 2 storeys applies however if there is to be a flat roof then the development may be three storeys – though still within the 9 metre height limit unless the site is on a slope then the development may be 10 metres. Activity centres (500 metres from a transport hub) may have greater heights and Neighbourhood centres (Aspendale, Dingley, etc) may have a height limit of four storeys in their shopping strips.
Concrete Crushing Panel Hearing
Concrete Crushing Panel Hearing is being heard March and April. The main issues for local residents are increased traffic, noise and toxic dust from the demolition material to be crushed in three sand quarries on Kingston and Clayton Roads. MBCL’s concern is leaching from the stormwater pond, water from which will be used to spray stock piles of demolition material containing arsenic, lead and asbestos. Water will flow back into the pond to be – re-sprayed onto the roads, machinery and end product. The pond is not clay lined so that contaminated water could leach into groundwater and major drains flowing into Mordialloc creek. Our submission will be presented April 26.
Foreshore Coordinator, Belinda Ainley attended and outlined her role in Kingston council. organising working groups involved in volunteer work on the foreshore–community education with displays and visits to schools and community groups to explain the importance of indigenous vegetation to stabilise cliffs and dunes. Belinda will coordinate a survey of native water rats in Kingston as an extension of Bayside Counicl’s study in their area. MBCL was invited to work on the survey along the foreshore and creek banks.
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The long awaited presentation by Melbourne Water re Management and waterways in Kingston including the functioning of Waterways wetlands and heavy metal readings in drains and creek, is finally happening Thursday December 2nd 7pm Brindisi Street, Mentone.
Important meeting:- Tuesday November 30th. Kingston Bay Trail Working Group 6pm at Brindisi Street, Mentone.
Bonbeach Community Nursery B-B-Q Sunday 5th December 1pm 3pm.
Our president has kindly volunteered to use his digital camera and coordinate the photographs to be taken along the foreshore and creek monitoring points. Thanks, Brian! Hopefully the usual crew will be able to lend a hand in finding the sites.
Monterey Cypresses in Attenborough Park will be assessed to check their health after the severe storms which caused splitting in one tree trunk. It is hoped that the trees can be supported and saved because of their historical value and landmark status at the gateway to Mordialloc.
Nylex Bay Spill
Nylex’s costly bay spill in March 2003 resulted in the Magistrate ordering Nylex to pay $50,000 to fund an environmental project involving revegetation of the lower Mordialloc Creek. Diisodecyl phthalate was discharged from the factory via the stormwater system where it travelled 3kms flowing into Port Phillip Bay at Mentone Beach creating a slick approx. 6kms by 2kms.
Wetlands on the north bank of Mordialloc Creek extending from Hain’s wetlands to Wells Road Bridge are to be part of industrial development south of Governor Road. The land on this site was filled with 24,000 cubic metres of illegally dumped acid sulfate soil from Burnley tunnel in 1998 and was not removed. It is buried on site in close proximity Dunlop’s Drain and the creek. Acid sulfate can corrode iron and eat through concrete if exposed to air through dredging or development. Acid sulfate soils have been responsible for fish-kills in northern NSW rivers and Queensland coastal developments. It is also causing concern for those planning to dredge the Yarra shipping channels. A good question for the Melbourne Water rep.– Will there be leaching from the AS site into the proposed wetlands, Mordialloc Creek and Port Phillip Bay???
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Bradshaw Park Open Day April 19, 10am. A feature will be guided tours of the park every hour. There is a letter boxing campaign for new members. The gates have not as yet been replaced.
Braeside Park Woodlands Industrial Estate is moving closer to the freeway reservation with more and bigger buildings on the eastern boundary of the industrial estate. The picnic area inside the park will be duplicated with a lake on the western boundary. There will be eight car parks within the park. The Friends invited Geoff Leigh M.P. for Mordialloc to discuss buying the Haines property south of the park to add to Braeside. The Friends will write to explain how the proposed freeway will affect the park.
Karkarook Park The grass fire in February destroyed 5000 recently planted trees Boral is trying to whittle away Melbourne Parks? conditions concerning restoration prior to commencing sand mining.
Assessment of Serco
Council is carrying out out an assessment of SERCO’s management of natural resource areas. MBCL mentioned lack of staff-insufficient to maintain the foreshore and other areas?
Richard Whately, Melbourne Water, was contacted about the lack of signs on the large outfall drain at Mentone, warning people not to swim near the mouth the mouth of the drain. MW is deciding on the wording for the sign. Brian McNamara, City of Kingston, has decided on the wording for signs for all the drains (16) from the pier to Charman Road, Mentone along the foreshore.
Before bank stabilisation on the creek bank from Chute Street to Heatherton Drain takes place, MBCL have asked SECO to meet on site and discuss the method of bank stabilisation. This will be ne of the allocated consultation periods written into the SERCO Contract for assistance to voluntary groups.
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