East West Link five metres from flats but no compensation on offer

Herald Sun: East West Link five metres from flats but no compensation on offer. Michelle Ainsworth. 26 August 2014

The view today from apartments on Bent St, Kensington.

Huge freeway ramps will run within five metres of the bedroom windows of an inner Melbourne apartment building if the east west link is built.

The Linking Melbourne Authority has refused to buy 53 apartments impacted by the road, or offer compensation for its impact on their property values.

Residents of the Kensington warehouse apartments commissioned an independent report from Echelon Planning which found the edge of the elevated road connecting the east west link to the Port of Melbourne would sit 4.7m from their apartment windows.

The pylons at ground level would be about 8m from the building’s door.

“If that project goes ahead exactly the way it’s planned to go ahead everyone in the building will suffer a substantial financial loss,” owners corporation chairman David Hardy said.

The future view from apartments on Bent St, Kensington, which will look out on to ramps of the East West Link.

The report found up to 60,000 vehicles would use the road each day once the full link was built.

“Residents on the lower three floors of the apartments will be living under the shadow of the elevated roadway,” it said.

“The bedrooms, living rooms and balconies of the apartments along the frontage of the Kensington Warehouse Apartments will directly look out to the elevated freeway.”

Mr Hardy said residents wanted the design of the toll road changed, possibly to a tunnel, so they could continue living in the 18-month-old building.

If not they wanted the properties acquired or compensation offered, as happened for the owners of the Evo apartments in Parkville.

LMA spokeswoman Gemma Boucher said the port connection design was still subject to change.

“LMA has recently met with the Owners Corporation for the Kensington Warehouse Apartments in Bent Street and we will continue to keep them up to date.”

Greens candidate for the seat of Melbourne Ellen Sandell said the residents of Kensington had every right to be deeply concerned by the project.

“In addition to disastrous impacts on people’s homes, we know the toll road will put more traffic on inner-city streets as people try to avoid expensive tolls,” Ms Sandell said.

Opposition roads spokesman Luke Donnellan said the Government should release the business case for the controversial tunnel after VCAT yesterday upheld a decision not to publish it.

“Denis Napthine won’t release the business case and we still don’t have traffic projections for this dud tunnel,” he said.

“Denis Napthine cannot sign the contracts before the election.”


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