Community Forum: Westgate Tunnel Project WON’T WORK

Message from Gerry McLoughlin at IMPA: Following from the very successful forum on the Western Distributor unsolicited bid proposal by TransUrban held at RMIT Centre for Design on 22 March 2017 BETTER WEST Community Group (member group of IMPA inc) with support from IMPA inc, PTUA, TT4e, NMWM and others have organised a Community Forum following the announcement on Sunday 2nd April 2017 of the TransUrban unsolicited bid West Gate Tunnel Project

We would like to invite you to attend this important event to hear from experts on Transport, Air Particulates and from Politicians how this project is a city changer for the worse and will not solve our very real freight on road conflicts to the entire inner Melbourne area.

The community is concerned with various aspects of this project not least the undemocratic nature of the insidious take over strategy of a privately owned transnational company of major public infrastructure. Other crucial issues include

  • public health concerns with increased air particulates
  • outdated transport options – why are we massively investing in road tunnels and not public transport and
  • where are the dedicated freight on rail and freight routes to get freight off local roads

and importantly

Where is the strategic plan that supports this project? – there isn’t one. The Victorian Transport Integration Act 2010 all but ignored as is the Victoria Truck Action Plan and the projects that fell out of these policies of the previous ALP government

Our response is to support the local Western community groups to achieve a credible response and alternatives

Date: 27th April 2017
Venue: at the RSL at 16 Mary St SPOTSWOOD at 6.00pm

Freight on road through inner Melbourne is not the future we want / a TransUrban road monopoly is not a future we will permit to happen (TransUrban owns13 of 15 tolls roads on the eastern corridor) Melbourne is the next significant link in their business strategy to take control of Australia’s eastern corridor roads

Speakers to include:

  • Colleen Hartland MLC
  • Dr Tony Morton, PTUA
  • William McDougall – UK Transport expert that supported EWL:TRAINS not TOLLS Campaign
  • Royce Miller -The Age, Investigative Journalist
  • Prof Jago Dodson RMIT Centre for Research
  • Dr Diane Keogh QUT – Air Pollution expert
  • Cr Jackie Fristacky City of Yarra – EWL TRAINS not TOLLS Campaign

Speakers have 5-7 minutes each, Chaired by Kevin Chamberlin, Chairman of North Melbourne West Melbourne Residents Association and former Lord Mayor of Melbourne

FYI….Letter to the Editor, THE AGE from Dr Tony Morton Chair of PTUA – 12th April 2017

Dear Editor,
The Port of Melbourne (12/4) has implicitly admitted that touted “West Gate Bridge alternatives” have little to do with removing trucks from residential streets.

Reading the Port’s actual submission to Infrastructure Victoria, it’s clear the private Port operator does not see Port-related truck traffic as the main driver of either the West Gate Tunnel or the alternative East West Link western section. It is far more concerned with 24-hour access on existing routes in the inner west, and road upgrades that allow bigger trucks.
Confusingly, the Port is backing the western section of the East West Link (which was not committed to prior to the 2014 election), but as a route for non-Port-related traffic. In short it favours a 1960s ‘predict and provide’ approach to road transport, despite its demonstrated record in flooding cities with additional car and truck traffic, with all the attendant noise and pollution.

While there’s commendable support for a Webb Dock rail link, nothing at all is said about the stillborn Port Rail Shuttle, intended to provide a more comprehensive rail alternative to displace Port area truck movements. The push for more trucks masks the fact that alternatives are being ignored.

— Tony Morton, President, Public Transport Users Association