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Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Geelong mayor 'sympathetic' to bridge protesters

City of Greater Geelong Mayor Cr. John Mitchell today told representatives of the Clifton Springs Independent Ratepayers Group (CSIRG) that he sympathised with their concerns about a proposed road bridge from Bayshore Avenue in Clifton Springs across Griggs Creek and into the northern end of the Jetty Road Urban Growth Area.

Property developer Bisinella has applied for a permit to build the bridge, which would be the only point of access for construction vehicles entering and leaving its land at the northern end of the Jetty Road Urban Growth Area. The application will be considered by the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) on 26-27 October in Geelong Magistrates Court.

Cr. Mitchell told the CSIRG representatives that the council will investigate whether alternative access routes can be created into the Growth Area to relieve pressure on the proposed Bayshore Avenue bridge. He also said that the council will explore whether it can impose a 3-tonne load limit on Bayshore Avenue itself, to prevent heavy construction vehicles using it.

The CSIRG representatives were told that a right of way exists across farmland from McDermott Road into the northern part of the Jetty Road Urban Growth Area and that this right of way could be turned into an access road into the Bisinella land. Finally, the CSIRG representatives heard that if Bisinella's application to build the bridge succeeds, the council will require it to submit a Construction Management Plan detailing how it will a) minimise constriction work on either side of Griggs Creek and b) minimise construction traffic while the bridge is being built.

The CSIRG's Gary Dean said that it was a constructive meeting that had enabled the group to express its concerns to the council. 'We appreciate Cr. Mitchell making time to listen to us' he said. 'We also appreciate his suggestion that it might be possible to create a 3-tonne limit on Bayshore Avenue, but it isn't clear who would police that limit. The only real resolution to this situation is a north-south road within the development giving construction vehicles access to Bisinella's land. That should have been in the plans from day one.'

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