Ballarat East residents call for better flood strategy

BALLARAT East residents have called on the City of Ballarat to develop a better strategy for dealing with flood risk in the area. 

Ballarat East Network spokeswoman Erin McCuskey  said Ballarat residents were moving into houses that were built on waterways. 

“There are so many beautiful creeks and waterways in Ballarat, why are we building over them?” she said. 

City of Ballarat and Corangamite Catchment Management Authority (CMA) last week held an informal community consultation session to reveal the findings of its Canadian Tributaries Flood Study. 

The investigation produced detailed flood mapping, which could assist council with planning and emergency response activities in the future. 

The meeting came after The Courier revealed in April that the City of Ballarat ignored advice from Corangamite CMA in 2002 to adopt flood overlays in its Ballarat Planning Scheme by January 2004.

The 2002 Corangamite CMA study revealed more than 900 Ballarat properties could be affected by a one-in-100-year flood.

Properties surrounding the Yarrowee River and Gnarr and Canadian Creeks would be most at risk. 

Ms McCuskey said she was frustrated that a neighbouring Fussell and Stockdale Street development had been built on a floodplain. 

“They are attempting to build a concrete basin over a wetland,” Ms McCuskey said. 

“Council did not listen to (community) objections about that development specifically.” 

Council identifies a floodplain as low-lying land adjacent to a river or creek channel that is periodically flooded. 

Ms McCuskey said Ballarat East Network did not disapprove of developments in the area. 

“We just want good, sustainable development,” she said. 

A report will now be presented to council to request the Ballarat Planning Scheme be amended. 

Ballarat City Council Mayor Joshua Morris did not return The Courier’s calls before deadline last night.

kara.irving@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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