IN the wake of a decision to turn land in Heatherton into train stabling, Kingston Council will consider writing to the state government to declare the preservation of the Green Wedge and the Chain of Parks project as “fundamentally important to Kingston’s community”.
At the end of last year the former Delta site on Kingston Road, Heatherton, was acquired by the state government for use as stabling for the Suburban Rail Loop. Council had earmarked the land for its Chain of Parks project – to be used as a regional sporting facility (“Stabling planned for potential park space”, The News, 23/12/20).
At their 27 January meeting, councillors will debate writing to the transport, planning, and environment ministers to again advocate for focus on the Chain of Parks. The state government committed $25 million in funding to the Chain of Parks prior to its re-election in 2018.
Kingston mayor Steve Staikos called on the government to follow through on that promise in December last year, and councillors will consider advocating for it again on Wednesday.
The motion councillors will vote on also “calls on the Suburban Rail Loop Authority and the state government to conduct a meaningful information and consultation process with the Cheltenham, Heatherton and Clarinda communities on this issue”.
“Council requests that state government work closely with council and the community, in particular the directly affected local residents of Cheltenham, Heatherton and Clarinda, to ensure their needs and concerns are adequately represented throughout the project and recognise that the proposed station and Sir William Fry Reserve and the Stabling Yard have much wider implications and flow-on adverse impacts to all surrounding residents,” the motion reads.
The motion notes that council will “recognise and articulate the concerns and issues raised by the community on the current proposed location and its damaging impact to the natural environment including the local flora and fauna” through the state government’s environmental effects statement process for the Suburban Rail Loop.