Moonee Valley Council launches legal action against East West Link

The Age: Moonee Valley Council launches legal action against East West Link. November 20, 2014 City Editor, The Age

Not wanted: Protesters at a demonstration this month against the East West Link that three councils are challenging in the courts. Photo: Robert Prezioso

A third Melbourne council has lodged a legal challenge against the Napthine government’s signature infrastructure project, the East West Link.

Moonee Valley Council on Thursday filed its Supreme Court challenge to the $6.8 billion freeway under Melbourne’s inner north.

The council says Planning Minister Matthew Guy changed the design and boundary of the controversial road project at the last minute, and also failed to follow proper process.

The legal challenge is separate to another launched by Yarra and Moreland councils, to be heard next month in the Supreme Court. It similarly argues that Mr Guy failed to follow laws altered specifically to speed the road project along.

The council has also filed a freedom-of-information request to obtain the project’s plans and details – some of which are still secret even from affected residents – to determine if there was sufficient justification for changes approved by Mr Guy.

They include adding a network of elevated roads next to Flemington public housing flats and along Moonee Ponds Creek.

Moonee Valley Mayor Narelle Sharpe said the decision to take legal action had not been made lightly. She said the council’s concerns about the impact of the road on Flemington and Moonee Ponds had been ignored by the government.

Cr Sharpe said the final design for the road released in October was “much worse for Moonee Valley in relation to traffic, loss of open space, air and noise pollution and damaging the Moonee Ponds Creek”.

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