The North East Link and Eastern Freeway expansion will severely impact Manningham, along with a large number of the Greek community who reside in the area.
Manningham Mayor, Cr Paula Piccinini said across Manningham homes would be lost, over 1,200 jobs gone and the industrial business precinct erased.
“Seven years of construction work will deliver major disruptions. Parkland at Bulleen Park and Koonung Creek Linear Park will be significantly reduced and a 40 metre ventilation stack will tower over Bulleen Park.
“We will lose the equivalent of 4 MCGs of open space and some recreation and sporting clubs will have to move. Major environmental impacts include 15,800 trees removed and an additional 10,000 trees affected. A total of 1.6 kilometres of the Koonung Creek will be diverted into underground drains and the Eastern Freeway will be widened to 20 lanes, increasing noise and pollution,” she said.
Cr Mike Zafiropoulos (AM) said the former Bulleen Drive-In site at 49 Greenaway Street will most likely be acquired to make way for the project.
“The site is owned by the Greek Orthodox Community of Melbourne and Victoria and was previously proposed for the development of a major Greek centre incorporating sporting, cultural, artistic and aged care facilities.
“Council is fighting hard for the best possible outcome to protect our community and environment. We have been advocating on behalf of the community and made a submission in response to the Victorian Government’s Environment Effects Statement (EES),” he said.
Legal representatives, Harwood Andrews will present Council’s EES submission at the Panel Hearings in July and will provide detailed information and data to highlight the specific impacts to Manningham.
“To ensure the best outcome for our community, we have been working closely with neighbouring Councils to represent residents along the interfacing boundaries. Together we have worked on projects impacting Bulleen Park, Koonung Creek and the Yarra River corridors.
“While we share some common concerns with neighbouring Councils, we do have some significantly differing views relating to Manningham’s open space and it is important that we represent the best interests of our residents.
“Where appropriate, we will continue to work with other Councils. Most importantly, we will keep fighting hard for the best possible outcome for our community. We believe the needs of our community and surrounding environment must be considered, before, during and after construction.”