Further problems with Minister’s approval

1.  Flemington Road interchange – but where?

Screen Shot 2014-07-01 at 1.18.47 pm

The Ministerial determination says the development plan needs to include a new connection between the declared project and Flemington Road.  The approval only specifies the land coloured in the picture above.  So where can a new interchange be located?

One suggestion is that they may slide from the flyovers adjacent to Ross Straw Field:

Screen Shot 2014-07-01 at 1.54.19 pm

But that would be an interchange with Mt Alexander Rd, not Flemington Road as the approval specifies.  Small details….

Wording from the Ministerial approval: “The Committee found that alternative interchange designs including a proposed alignment adjacent to Flemington Road should be examined. I accept the Committee’s findings in that regard.”

 

2. Part B has been approved to avoid ‘further delay’

The panel recommended setting aside Part B on the basis it had not been properly assessed and needed further work.  The Minister rejected this recommendation saying instead that:

By contrast the recommendations of the Committee would risk further process, delay, uncertainty and quite possibly substantial variations to aspects of the Project. There can be no certainty that the ultimate approval would be materially different to the exhibited proposal or that it would not produce other impacts or issues which may be considered problematic;

The public interest is served in this case by an integrated decision now rather than a piecemeal approval process.

The panel anticipated this and recommended several ways of minimising the impact of Part B, but not all of these have been adopted by the Minister and some have been considerably watered-down.  The Minister has only committed to “investigating” the Arden St entry and exit ramps and minimising impacts to Flemington Housing Estate “as far as practical”.

3. Business case “not necessary”

An examination of the business case was not in the Terms of Reference of the panel, but they noted they hadn’t been provided with a copy.  The Minister went further saying “I do not rely on a business case” and “it is not necessary for me to do so”.  He said it is “axiomatic” that the project will deliver economic benefits – it’s just that no-one has any clear evidence that this is the case, and no-one is required to produce this evidence.

More to come….

 

 

 

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2 Comments on “Further problems with Minister’s approval”

  1. ChrisG July 9, 2014 at 9:47 pm #

    Axiomatic: self evident or unquestionable. A dangerous assumption?

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  1. Surprise! Planning Minister approves the East West Link | Yarra Campaign for Action on Transport - July 4, 2014

    […] West Link Blog: Further Problems with Ministers Approval (2 July […]

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