Victory Street Party: celebrating the demise of East West Link

13 December 2014: Victory Street Party: celebrating the demise of East West Link. News coverage from Seven and Nine News Melbourne, featuring Keith Fitzgerald, Mel Gregson, Anthony Main, Howard Tuxworth, Davis Michaud, Daniel Andrews & community tunnel picket.

The Age: Anti-East West Link campaigners celebrate victory at Fitzroy street party. Benjamin Millar (13 December 2014)
Jubilant campaigners who fought the scuttled East-West Link took to the streets of Fitzroy on Saturday to celebrate the controversial project’s demise.

Hundreds of revellers joined the ‘Victory Street Party’ on the corner of Westgarth and Brunswick Streets to commemorate the community win.

Protest organiser Anthony Main said the 18-month grassroots campaign showed what could be achieved when people came together for a common cause.

“We took on this fight on a wing and a prayer,” he said.

“We had a lot of obstacles standing in our way – the Liberals and at the time Labor, big business and massive amounts of police resources.”

A festive mood was struck up with music and singers as speakers praised the efforts of a disparate group of protesters succeeding against the odds.

The celebration came the day after the new state government wrote to the East West Connect consortium demanding an immediate suspension of “all works and project activities”.

Mr Main said Labor’s about-turn and vow to ditch the project was a direct result of people power, as reflected by the people who spoke at the street party.

“It was the voices of the ordinary people who have been involved in this campaign, who took a stand against big business groups to show this was a project that was not in the interests of people,” he said.

“We had people fighting for homes, people fighting for parks, fighting for the heritage of the local area and for the environment – it has galvanised the community and whichever government has power is going to find it very difficult to raise this project again.”