Thursday, April 25, 2024

Mitchell Shire wins consultation extension in quarry battle

Following community pressure, the Victorian Planning Authority has extended the consultation period on the Beveridge Northwest Precinct Structure Plan (PSP) until the end of January.

In a statement, Mitchell Shire Council said community concerns around the length and timing of the consultation leading up to Christmas and the VPA holding just the one in-person information session were also raised in an urgent letter from Council sent to Planning Minister, Richard Wynne last month.

Many community members are outraged with the revised Beveridge Northwest PSP that now includes a quarry, Council said.

“We have heard from the community that they clearly do not want another quarry in Wallan or Beveridge and extending the consultation period is the first sign that the State Government is listening to their concerns,” said Councillor Rob Eldridge.

He said Council had received more than 300 handwritten submissions at pop-up stalls and drop-in sessions during the past three weeks.

Residents have raised a range of concerns including the impact on current and future growth and services as well as traffic congestion, vibrations, noise, dust, health issues and environmental impacts during discussions with Mitchell Shire Council officers.

The plan to install traffic lights on the Northern Highway to accommodate on average 30 extra truck movements during peak hour each day has been met with dismay and anger.

The consensus of many is that they can not see any benefit to the community from this quarry.

“The fight is far from over though and I urge anyone who is against this plan to make a submission to the VPA,” said Cr Eldridge.

“This quarry will be in existence for at least 30 years, dividing this community for generations. The quarry, and its buffers, will stifle development, prevent the construction of major roads, schools and sport fields, and ultimately bring little benefit to the local community.

Council has twice rejected planning permits for the proposed quarry at 175 Northern Highway, Wallan.

“As Council, we will continue to advocate for our residents to ensure that as we continue to grow we are developing healthy, connected and sustainable communities,” Cr Eldridge said.

With more than 121,000 people likely to call the corridor from Beveridge to Wallan home in the next 20 years, good planning is essential, he said.

“The proposed quarry would sterilise land that would otherwise be developed to deliver essential infrastructure and services to this growing community.”

To make a submission to the Victorian Planning Authority on the Beveridge North West Precinct Structure Plan – which includes the proposed development of a quarry on the side of Spring Hill, follow the link below.

Submissions close 5pm, Monday 31 January. Click to : MAKE A SUBMISSION

Latest Articles