The Clifton Springs Independent Ratepayers Group (CSIRG) will hold a public meeting on Thursday 8 September at 6.30 p.m. at SpringDale Neighbourhood Centre, Drysdale High Street. The topic of the meeting will be the City of Greater Geelong's (CoGG) recent decision to allow an 'unlimited load' bridge to be built from Bayshore Avenue into the northern end of the Jetty Road Urban Growth Area.
A decision of this sort of significance would normally be subject to public scrutiny through the formal planning process, but local people heard about this 'rogue bridge' only once CoGG had decided to allow it. In response, 864 residents have signed a petition organised by the CSIRG opposing the bridge.
(See 'A troubling bridge over local waters' [19 August] and 'Interest grows in "rogue bridge"' [25 August] on this blog.)
The Drysdale & Clifton Springs Community Association (DCSCA) is supporting and assisting the campaign, which has attracted considerable interest from the local press. Geelong Mayor, Cr. John Mitchell, has recently invited representatives from CSIRG to discuss the issue with him at City Hall on 13 September.
CSIRG spokesperson Gary Dean points out that the rogue bridge will affect residents not just of Bayshore Ave, but also of all interconnecting streets between Kewarra Drive and Jetty Road. 'All these streets will be seriously affected by an unacceptable increase in traffic - including heavy construction vehicles - for many years', he said. 'This poses an unacceptable risk to our daily lives, especially to children and elderly people. We need to make it clear to City Hall that they are ignoring residents' and ratepayers' concerns, where they should be representing us.We need to make Council accountable for their decision.'
CSIRG can be contacted by e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org) or by phone (5251 1122).