Letters to the editor

October 04, 2017

Time to lobby for green route

The majority green vote was the correct decision.

VicRoads is an arm of State Government .

They only make recommendations not decisions .

VicRoads has previously supported bad proposals .

Supporters of the green route need to get mobilised and lobby all levels of government .

Robert Cross.

Grey route may be not the only way to go

Mr Peter Bennett’s letter used an interesting format ie, question and answer. Interesting, but may not be credible, as the person asking the questions is also answering them.

His assumption that the relative authorities will not retain the old bridge, no matter which route is chosen is probably correct.

Green route supporters will reluctantly concede this point, but this does not diminish the case for the green route being the best option.

Previous studies; at the Community Drop In Session, Lions Club Kiosk, Belmore Street, September 7 discussions with Roads Victoria representatives did establish;

- there are no detailed drawings, specifications for the grey route bridge and its access points,

- no costings for either bridge other than an a offhand ‘they are about the same’ and,

- when asked a direct question, ‘what was the main reason the grey route was recommended to government?’ the answer was that their studies had established that the majority of Mulwala residents (vehicles) finished their journey in Belmore Street.

That led to the question of ‘how did you establish that?’ ‘Was it by the questioning of the Mulwala drivers?’

The answer was, ‘we established it by the use of number plate recognition cameras’.

It took a while for this answer to sink in. Number plate recognition plates 8 to 9 years ago when the last traffic surveys were done. My immediate thought was. That is not the sound of pigeons flying over Yarrawonga but little pigs.

How Mr Bennett has come to the conclusion that Yarrawonga has a bypass already, the Murray Valley Highway, has me confused.

It bypasses Yarrawonga where, Rutherglen to Cobram maybe? He also highlights the growth east of the town and makes assumptions on their likely travel preferences.

As one of these residents, I mostly access Belmore Street from the Murray Valley Highway and would access Mulwala from the green route B option.

Green route supporters believe that this route will not have any negative effect on trade in Belmore Street or Melbourne Road. It allows for the possibility of large vehicles bypassing Mulwala along the railway reserve in the distant future.

Grey route supporters were dismissive of a previous survey that came out strongly in favour of the green route.

They would not accept it because they considered in included visitors to the area.

They believe their local petition of Belmore businesses was more relevant.

I think from memory they recorded 35 in favour of the grey route.

From last count I think you will find almost 120 businesses on Belmore Street or in the arcades. That leaves a difference of 85, either uncommitted or in favour of the green route.

Fast forward to the Moira Shire Plebiscite. I think that those that voted are in full support of Belmore Street traders and will continue to support them.

They have taken other factors into consideration and came out in favour of the green route 44 percent to 11 percent.

Mr Bennett is high in praise of the expertise of VicRoads and RMS NSW in designing and building bridges.

As this planning started in 2006, I think that of September 2017, no costing of either option, no working let alone detailed drawings and specifications of the bridges and access, leaves a lot to be desired and subsequently their decision making.

The relevant state authorities got it wrong when the existing bridge was built.

Locals had to bring to their attention that it was not going to meet in the middle.

They got it wrong once, don’t let it happen again.

Doug Ringholt.

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