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Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Open Day survives the heat and dodges thunderstorms

On Saturday 19 December, around 200 people braved high temperatures and imminent thunderstorms to attend an Open Day and Open Studio in Wyndham Street, Drysdale.

The event was presented by the Drysdale and Clifton Springs Community Association and Dax BeadArts. It featured a garage sale, a plant sale, a raffle, a Lions BBQ and drinks by Cafe2U.

The Bellarine Ukelele Orchestra
Dax BeadArt’s Glenda MacNaughton opened her studio to browsers and demonstrated glass blowing techniques. Local musicians Sarah Carroll, Narelle Jolley, Tex Miller and Chris Wilson each gave stirring sets; and then friends joined them to form a pop-up Bellarine Ukelele Orchestra!
Chris Wilson

Association President Rick Paradise said, “We’re pleased with the event, which certainly raised the association’s profile. It was a very hot day with threatened thunderstorms, but a steady stream of people dropped by. They picked up bargains at the garage sale and plant sale, watched glass art being made at the Open Studio and heard some great live music.”

Thursday, December 17, 2015

VicRoads update on the Drysdale Bypass

On 17 December 2015, DCSCA received the following update on the Drysdale Bypass from Tim Price, Project Director (Drysdale Bypass) at VicRoads.

As 2015 draws to a close, I would like to thank the local community for providing feedback at our Drysdale Bypass information sessions this year and provide an update on the status of the project.

The community strongly supports the proposed bypass and a review of pedestrian facilities, cycling facilities and intersections along High Street to improve traffic and safety. Feedback from these sessions is being taken into account in planning studies and design development for the proposed Bypass and High Street improvements.

Over the next few months, VicRoads will complete a traffic analysis and a number of studies, including environment management, cultural heritage and social impact.

I want to assure the community that there will be further opportunities to provide feedback about the project next year, including a formal Planning Scheme Amendment process for the Bypass. Under this process, the public will be invited to make written submissions about the proposed Bypass design.

The State Government has committed $3 million to improve traffic and safety through High Street. This is in addition to the $106 million committed to plan and build the Drysdale Bypass. I thank everyone for their input, patience and support for this project and look forward to working further with the community in 2016.

On behalf of VicRoads, I wish everyone a happy and safe holiday on our roads.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Open Day celebrates a new beginning

Drysdale and Clifton Springs Community Association (DCSCA) will run an Open Day on Saturday 19 December between 11.00am and 3.00pm at 164 Wyndham Street, Drysdale.

The Open Day will feature:
* A garage sale, a plant sale, a raffle, a Lions BBQ and coffee by Cafe2U

* Live music by Chris Wilson, Tex Miller, Narelle Jolley (of Sweet Dolores and the Whirling Sprurs) and Sarah Carroll (The Ukelele Queen of the Bellarine!)

* Glass blowing and Open Studio by Dax BeadArt's Glenda MacNaughton.

A new beginning!
The Open Day and Open Studio aims to raise funds for the association, to boost its membership and to invite people to join it in promoting the wellbeing of the community and its environment.

The event also celebrates the end of the year-long controversy over a new service station being built in Drysdale by Milemaker Petroleum. The controversy led to the association being ordered to pay Milemaker legal costs of $5,500, but some months later, the company waived the bill as a gesture of good will to the community.

Association Secretary Patrick Hughes said, “Milemaker’s generous gesture marks a new beginning for the association. We can return reinvigorated to our work, including representing local people’s views to outside organisations, lobbying for increased services and leisure facilities for the area’s expanding population and running the annual Festival of Glass.”

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

DCSCA helps Vic Roads to prepare for the Drysdale bypass

On 8 December, DCSCA Treasurer Doug Carson discussed progress on the Drysdale Bypass with four independent consultants engaged by Vic Roads.

The consultants were two civil engineers, a lawyer and a project manager; and the aim of the discussion was to ensure that the documentation, analysis, and reporting of the bypass project is thorough and of high quality.

The Drysdale bypass has been an issue locally for several years, but interest grew in the lead-up to the 2014 state election. The state seat of Bellarine was a marginal seat and both major parties promised to fund the bypass if elected. The Labor Party was elected and work on the Drysdale bypass has started.

Local views on local issues
Doug Carson’s comments to the consultants drew on the views expressed in recent public consultations about the bypass. “I told the consultants that Drysdale becomes gridlocked during peak hours and peak holiday times”, he said, “And that trucks, school buses and through traffic would not clog up the town if an alternative route was available.”

Carson also told the consultants that there was concern that without thorough planning and modelling, the bypass could create traffic chaos at the existing Jetty Road roundabout and at nearby Peninsula Drive, where upwards of 5,000 students go to school and where a 35-acre site is set to become a massive Sporting Precinct.
Balancing the benefits
The consultants suggested that the current plan for a 6kms bypass with five roundabouts could lengthen journey times on the bypass, making it a less attractive option. “A bypass must balance the benefit of a quicker route with the benefit of easy access”, they said; “A ‘true’ bypass has an entrance and an exit, with no junctions in between.”

In his response, Carson said that the current plan was received well in two local consultation sessions; and that altering the plan by removing roundabouts would have significant effects on local traffic. “If the junction of Grubb Road, Jetty Road and Drysdale High Street was reconfigured to include a flyover for east-west traffic”, said Carson, “that would eliminate one roundabout in the bypass. However, removing any of the proposed roundabouts at Princess Street, Murradoc Road and Whitcombes Road would cause problems for local traffic.”

Different means to the same ends?
Finally, Carson told the consultants that some people have suggested upgrading Andersons Road between Grubb road and the Portarlington-Queenscliff Road as an alternative means to ease traffic in central Drysdale. “The upside is that the road exists already, shortening the construction phase” said Carson. “The downsides are that Portarlington residents would have to drive further to the start of this alternative bypass; and that the drive will be even less attractive by the proposed ferry from Portarlington creating more traffic.”

The consultants will present a report to VicRoads at the end of their consultations.

DCSCA proposal is a priority for regional planners

DCSCA has proposed that the City of Greater Geelong should conduct a scoping study into creating a ‘Bellarine Link’ – an extension of the Geelong Ring Road to the Bellarine.

The association made its proposal as part of the council’s annual Community Budget Submission programme, which allows community groups to nominate capital projects (i.e. building work) that they believe the council should undertake.

Pushing an open door
Subsequently, DCSCA has learnt that a Bellarine Link is a priority for the council and is part of the Regional Growth Plan developed by the Geelong Regional Alliance (G21), which brings together government, business and community organisations across the five municipalities of Colac Otway, Golden Plains, Greater Geelong, Queenscliffe and Surf Coast.

The state government has committed $4m for a planning study into the costs, benefits and construction stages of a Bellarine Link. The study is due to report in 2017/18, but VicRoads is trying to get the funding sooner. Vic Roads will drive the study, with officers from the City of Greater Geelong also involved in it.

It’s good to see that at least one of DCSCA’s proposals aligns with the region’s growth plan. Now, where’s that Drysdale swimming pool?!

Monday, December 7, 2015

DCSCA makes a submission to council's electoral review

The Drysdale & Clifton Springs Community Association Inc. (DCSCA) has made a Preliminary Submission to a Review of the City of Greater Geelong Council's structure being conducted by the Victorian Electoral Commission (VEC).

The VEC's Review originated in a 2012 amendment to the City of Greater Geelong Act (1993). The amendment created the post of directly-elected Mayor of Geelong, resulting in a council of 12 councillors plus the Mayor for the 2012 council election.

The amendment also required the VEC to conduct an Electoral Representation Review before the 2016 council election; and, drawing on that Review, to recommend to the Minister for Local Government the most appropriate electoral structure for the council from the 2016 election onwards. 
The Review should determine the number of councillors (between 4 and 11, plus the Mayor) and how they should be distributed.

Key dates in the Review
11 November 2015     Preliminary public submissions open
9 December 2015        (5.00pm) Closing date for preliminary public submissions
20 January 2016         Preliminary Report published; response submissions open
17 February 2016       (5.00pm) Closing date for response submissions
24 February 2016       Public hearing: 7.00 pm Council Chamber, City Hall
16 March 2016           Final Report published.

Making submission to the Review
Submissions to the VEC Electoral Representation Review can be made via:
·      VEC’s online submission form at
·      Post to VEC, Level 11, 530 Collins St., Melbourne 3000

All submissions will be published on the VEC website at and made available for inspection at the VEC office (Level 11, 530 Collins Street, Melbourne).

The Final Report will be available from the VEC ( or 131 832) and will also be available for inspection at Council offices.


The Drysdale & Clifton Springs Community Association Inc. (DCSCA) was created in 1996. Since then, its relationships – good and bad – with the City of Greater Geelong have led it to believe that:
·      the northern part of the Bellarine Peninsula (Drysdale, Clifton Springs and Curlewis) is, broadly speaking, a single, geographically defined ‘community of interest’ within the City of Greater Geelong
·      dividing the task of representing this single community of interest between two councillors in two wards – Cheetham and Coryule - has prevented this single community from speaking with a single voice about its views, interests and aspirations
·      the absence of a single voice for this community of interest has led to it receiving an inequitable share of council resources.

More broadly, DCSCA’s relationships with the City of Greater Geelong have led it to believe that:
·      the council’s current structure makes it is impossible for a ward constituency to hold its councillor to account for her/his actions (or lack of them)
·      relying on 4-yearly elections to make a councillor accountable enables them – if they wish - to misrepresent their constituency during their 4-year term of office, which may lead to outcomes (e.g. rezoning, building approvals) that cannot be undone, even if they fail to be re-elected.