PLANS to refurbish the substation in Seaford have hit a snag.
Designs for a refurbished exterior for the vacant substation building have been completed. They feature greening the top part of the walls, possibly with synthetic material, the addition of LED lighting, and the installation of public artwork by local graffiti artists at the bottom end of the walls.
The proposal is in jeopardy however, with the future maintenance of the building in dispute.
A report considered by Frankston Council at their most recent meeting read that “there is disagreement between council and Metro/VicTrack regarding future maintenance responsibilities of the proposed works to the Seaford Substation. Negotiations in regard to maintenance responsibilities are ongoing and inconclusive at this time.”
“Ongoing negotiations with Metro/VicTrack remain unresolved and it is considered unlikely that either party will accept responsibility for the ongoing maintenance of the Substation improvements,” the council report read.
The building is on VicTrack land.
Frankston councillor Kris Bolam said that not upgrading the building would be “a lost opportunity”.
“From a distance, it is a beautiful building but as you get closer the battle scars from years of graffiti damage and the general lack of maintenance really stand out,” he said. “It’s a state asset on state land. Council is still willing to contribute to improve the facade but the state government needs to intervene and cut through the bureaucratic resistance that continues to stymie this project. Without the political will, the substation is going to continue to sit there and rot.”
Council had previously committed $70,000 to the proposed redevelopment of the building. On 11 May, councillors voted to note that a copy of their report and “a response required in relation to the maintenance impasse be provided to and from” Carrum MP Sonya Kilkenny.