Fridays No Tunnel Protest at Transport Summit

Above: TV News coverage from Nine, ABC and Ten of Fridays Transport Summit, public transport issues and of course, the No Tunnels protest at Telstra Dome.

Many thanks to everyone who attended Fridays No Road Tunnel protest at Telstra Dome at such short notice. If you have additional reports, news and photos, please contact us at YCAT and we’ll included them either on the website or the this weeks YCAT Newsletter.

Also YCAT had a very productive meeting on Thursday evening at the Leinster Arms Hotel with local residents who are concerned about compulsory acquisition of homes in North Collingwood. We’ll let you know more soon about some exciting events being planned.

Right: Community protests at Telstra Dome

The Age: Protesters rally outside tunnel summit (5th September, 2008)
Protesters rallied outside a transport summit in Melbourne in opposition to a proposed east-west road tunnel. About 30 people assembled outside the Telstra Dome as Victorian Premier John Brumby prepared to host a summit that will help shape the government’s transport plan to be released later this year.

About 100 stakeholders were expected to attend Friday’s summit, which will be their last opportunity to have their say on the Eddington report.

Sir Rod Eddington’s $18 billion transport blueprint recommends a road tunnel be built linking the Eastern Freeway with the western suburbs and an east-west rail tunnel. Protesters are angry they have been locked out of the summit, which Mr Brumby says will bring together the best minds in transport, urban planning, environment and construction.

Freda Watkin, from the Yarra Campaign Against the Tunnel, said residents affected by the Eddington proposal felt disenfranchised.

“It’s a culmination of feeling very, very disappointed because this is probably the most significant transport forum and discussion in 40-odd years in Victoria, and also angry because we feel that the decisions made in the forum are going to be, probably, more geared towards the corporate sector … and not in the interests of residents or communities.” (more in link above)

ABC Online: Protesters converge on transport summit (5th September, 2008)
Anti-road tunnel protesters have gathered outside a transport conference in Melbourne to voice their opposition to the east-west tunnel proposed for Melbourne’s north. The Premier has joined experts in transport, urban planning, environment and construction, to discuss Melbourne’s future transport needs at conference at Docklands Stadium today.

The Rod Eddington Report recommends the extension of the Eastern Freeway using tunnels under inner city suburbs as a way to reduce traffic on the West Gate Bridge. However, the Royal Park Protection Group and the Yarra Campaign Against Tunnels say the proposed link is a truck bypass route in disguise and will be a blight on local communities. (more in link above)