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Monday, November 10, 2014

Locals petition against proposed Drysdale service station

The Drysdale & Clifton Springs Community Association (DCSCA) has launched a petition calling on the City of Greater Geelong (CoGG) to reverse its recent decision to allow a Caltex service station in a Drysdale Rural Living Zone.

CoGG is supporting Caltex franchisee Milemaker Petroleum's proposal to build a service station at the junction of Drysdale High Street and Jetty Road.

In response, DCSCA members and supporters have asked the Victorian Civil and Administrative tribunal (VCAT) to review CoGG's support for the proposal; and they have launched a petition against the proposed service station. The petition reads as follows:

Service station at the Jetty Road roundabout? No thanks!

We the undersigned request the City of Greater Geelong to cancel permit 1565/2013.

We believe: -
  • There has been inadequate community consultation in the Planning Process.
  • It is inappropriate in a Rural Living Zone and inconsistent with the Drysdale Clifton Springs Structure Plan.
  • It will increase traffic congestion in an already congested area, cause major traffic safety issues and greatly increase the danger to cyclists.
  • It will cause significant environmental issues: underground fuel storage tanks inevitably cause long-term issues and toxins could enter the underground water system and pollute the nearby bodies of water.
  • It will severely compromise the rural amenity of the approach into the Drysdale Clifton Springs Township.
  • Should a service station be required, it should be located in a commercial area.

The petition will be submitted by the Drysdale & Clifton Springs Community Association Secretary, Mr. Neil McGuinness, e-mail

Community concerns ignored
The council's support for the service station ignores widespread concerns in the community and contradicts the council's own Structure Plan for Drysdale & Clifton Springs; and many in the local community are angry at the council's high-handed approach to this issue.*

Indeed, CoGG's consultations around the proposal have been so poor that many local people learnt of the proposal only after CoGG had declared its support for it and granted a planning permit.**

DCSCA Secretary Neil McGuinness said, "Lake Lorne, McLeod's Waterholes and green spaces  all contribute to our townships' distinctive rural ambience; and the thoughtful location of shops and services have maintained its village atmosphere. All of this is well worth preserving - as the council's Structure Plan for the area emphasises.

"Locals would be very distressed, he said, "if the horses that currently occupy the site of the proposed service station were replaced by a hazardous eyesore surrounded by dangerous, congested traffic."

* See "Council dismisses environmental and economic objection to service station" (13 March 2014); and "Council rebuffs service station objectors" (17 April 2014) on this blog.
** See "Council restricts public comment on proposed new service station in Drysdale" (29 January 2014) on this blog.

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