Victorian Greens open space strategy unveiled in Flemington

Moonee Valley Leader: Victorian Greens open space strategy unveiled in Flemington. Linh Ly. 9 September 2014

Developers will be required to ensure open space is considered in new projects under a Victorian Greens plan.

Western Metropolitan Greens MP Colleen Hartland and Essendon state election candidate Ashley Waite announced the Greens open space strategy at Debneys Park in Flemington yesterday.

The Greens want to tighten laws to make sure open space was a requirement for new developments, such as East West Link, to ensure community health and wellbeing.

“Precious open spaces – such as Debneys Park, Travancore Park, Essendon Community Gardens, Ormond Park and Moonee Ponds Creek – are all treasured by the local community yet are all set to be degraded or destroyed by the East West tollway,” Ms Waite said.

“The main concern for a lot of people is when new developments come in, sometimes it takes away the existing green space amenity. It’s really important, particularly when we get higher density living in the city, for people to have that space to move around in.”

Ms Hartland said there would be “absolute destruction” of Moonee Valley’s parklands as a result of the State Government’s proposed East West Link.

“When you look at what the Moonee Valley area can lose with that, it’s quite devastating,” she said.

Ms Hartland said they wanted to amend the Planning and Environment Act to set open space requirements, but those requirements were yet to be determined.

The Greens’ open space strategy does include setting green space targets and providing $5 million grants to local councils to improve existing spaces.

The Linking Melbourne Authority, the body overseeing the road project, intended for Ormond, Debneys and Travancore parks to be used during construction, with some sections permanently acquired as part of its initial design.

Authority spokeswoman Gemma Boucher said if the design did not reduce the impact on Debneys Park they would replace the facilities.

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