Following Council’s successful Commit to Casey advocacy campaign, the Victorian budget earmarked big investment on infrastructure in Casey, but Council’s input on the design of this infrastructure has so far been ignored.
City of Casey Mayor Cr Amanda Stapledon said while Council and residents are happy with the progress in building congestion-busting infrastructure, they are rightfully disappointed by the lack of engagement and futureproofing.
“Council welcomes the progress of infrastructure projects in Casey, but progress shouldn’t come at the expense of quality design, connectivity, safety or listening to residents.
“Take Clyde Road and Evans Road level crossing removals for example, where Council’s requests to improve the safety, amenity and design have so far been ignored by the State’s delivery agencies.
“I have been talking with residents across Casey who wish to get home safer and sooner, but they don’t want to compromise on quality and be stuck in traffic and unsafe conditions in a few years.
“Like Council, residents wish to be consulted before a decision being made so that they can have input on the outcome.
Edrington Ward Councillor Susan Serey suggested the State Government take urgent measures to improve the design of Clyde Road level crossing removal.
“The State’s road under rail design solution is an old solution that fails to meet the standards the state government promote as part of Plan Melbourne and 20-minute neighbourhoods – this solution is uninviting and unfitting for the area that is earmarked as being a future vibrant Health and Education Precinct,” she said.
“Council recommended three future-proofed solutions to the Level Crossing Removal Authority, including rail under road and station upgrade options, but no aspect of these recommendations have been included.
“The Minister should intervene during this intense design phase to ensure amenity, safety and accessibility are protected for users of the Clyde Road pedestrian and cycle links.
“Furthermore, a station upgrade would ensure we have facilities appropriate with usage and premium station status for Berwick.”
Deputy Mayor and Edrington Ward Councillor Timothy Jackson made note of the great progress Council has made in improving communication with the state and federal government and reiterated Council’s hopes to continue building on this.
“Contrary to the disappointing experience Council has so far had engaging on level crossing removals, we have made significant progress improving our relationships with our state and federal counterparts. The residents of Berwick deserve a new station and modern infrastructure as part of the upgrade,” he said.
“As fierce advocates for the community, Council anticipates that we will at times disagree with our state counterparts, but we’re looking to collaborate and not compete.”