Station development will not benefit community
IT IS bitterly disappointing that Heritage Victoria has issued a permit to the Andrews Labor Government for their dog's breakfast of a plan to redevelop the Ballarat Railway Station precinct.
Daniel Andrews has completely failed to undertake a proper consultation and, as a result, we have a proposal that will financially benefit the private developers of the site at the expense of the community.
Nobody voted for this current plan for station precinct.
Before the election, Daniel Andrews said there would be four-star hotel, a 3000sqm exhibition space, a new taxi rank and new station facilities.
Daniel Andrews will fail to deliver on all of these promises if the current plan progresses.
On top this there are no plans to upgrade disability access to the station, no funding to improve surrounding roads for the masses of buses Labor plans to have pass through the precinct.
And, despite skyrocketing numbers of passengers using the station, Labor's plan will actually see a reduction in the number of car parks available to train travellers.
We have one chance to get this right.
If Daniel Andrews' plan does proceed, generations of Ballarat residents will look back and wonder how on earth this disgraceful redevelopment was ever allowed to occur on a site of such incredible heritage significance.
It's time for Labor to admit they've got it wrong; they must go back to the drawing board and develop a plan that the Ballarat community can support.
- Joshua Morris, Western Victoria MP
Is our energy attitude based on wrong question?
I AM concerned Australia's attitude to the energy crisis is based on the wrong question.
We have a price spiral in the electricity system as well as a "gas crisis". The government keeps asking, "Why change an energy system which isn't broken?"
The fact is that it isn't broken but it is at fault. The fault is related to the phenomenon known as the greenhouse effect.
Put very simply, there is already enough carbon in the atmosphere to maintain our ideal living conditions. Actually, in the last 50 years, humans have caused the amount of carbon in the atmosphere to exceed the ideal level, resulting in climate change. Therefore, the world's remaining carbon should stay out of the atmosphere.
It's in the form of coal, oil and gas and it should stay in the ground.
Given this fact, the government should be asking, "Since the current system of energy production is causing dangerous climate change, how can we continue to supply our energy needs safely in the future?"
Yes, it means resources which we have in abundance must be ignored. Yes, it means that existing industries must be replaced. This is not easy, but the technology and the investment funds are there to achieve it.
There are new jobs to be had in new industries.
However, without government commitment, investors are not prepared to risk their funds in a dinosaur political environment.
If our government looks to a safe future, industry can make it affordable.
- Joe Boin, Invermay
Is the transport hub what the majority wants?
UNFORTUNATELY, I don't believe the transport hub is what the majority of ratepayers approve of or want in the form that has been presented to us.
What happened to democracy in Ballarat when residents have views ignored and no public ballot/vote has been allowed to happen, when there is such a significant piece of our history about to be destroyed.
Let's have a show of hands (and caring hearts) to let everyone know how we feel.
- Yvonne Smith, Warrenheip