The ‘completely ludicrous’ Laverton level crossing removal

Colleen Gates on Laverton level crossing removal

Hobsons Bay City Council has formally rejected a State Government request for the Council to accept ownership and ongoing maintenance of the new bridge structures at Aviation Road after the Level Crossing Removal Project has been completed.

Storm water detention basins and surrounding railway reserve land were also among the maintenance works the State Government was hoping to pass down to its subordinate, but it appears the Council has built a new bridge for the State Government to contend with.

In a motion moved by Councillor Colleen Gates, seconded by Councillor Sandra Wilson, Hobsons Bay City Council stated it did not agree to accept ownership and maintenance of the new road approach structures or adjacent VicTrack land.

The Council also called on the State Government to ‘take a more integrated precinct approach’ with the Aviation Road project, noting a number of improvements for the suggestion box that relate to station facilities, car parks and surrounding streets.

Speaking on the motion and more broadly on the State Government’s request for the Council to accept ownership and ongoing maintenance of the new Aviation Road bridge structures, Councillor Colleen Gates described the situation as ‘completely ludicrous’.

“It’s completely ludicrous to think that they (State Government) can construct a bridge and infrastructure over one of the major rail arterial routes and then expect the Council (Hobsons Bay City Council) to become responsible for that infrastructure,” Cr Gates said.

“The local community are excited to see this project slowly coming to life and we hope that eventually it delivers a finished product as impressive as those we have witnessed being built in other locations across the city.”

In a statement, Level Crossing Removal Project Director Tony Hedley said the Project will continue to facilitate discussions about the ongoing maintenance of the bridge and road with relevant stakeholders including Hobsons Bay City Council, VicRoads and VicTrack.

“Discussions about maintenance of the new Aviation Road bridge and road are ongoing and we will continue to work with all parties, including Hobsons Bay City Council, to achieve a resolution,” Mr Hedley said.

Willy and Hobby understands that Aviation Road is currently classified as a municipal road and as such, Hobsons Bay City Council is responsible for its maintenance. The new road and bridge are expected to open by early 2020.

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