AN almost $1 million upgrade of Ballan’s main street is expected to be completed by July.
The first stage of the works to upgrade footpaths for better pedestrian access, add new furniture, and allow for for future underground power works has been ongoing since April with businesses saying they are concerned at the length of time it is taking.
The works between Fiskin and Stead Streets were budgeted by Moorabool Shire Council to cost $970,000 and were expected to be finished this month.
Ballan newsagent Ian Ireland said businesses were starting to get frustrated with the delays.
“I hear people complain, I hear other businesses complain and I think they’re right,” Mr Ireland said.
“You walk down the street and you see businesses that used to have four car parks out the front, they’ve got none now.
“I know the shire continually says there’s a park around off Steiglitz Street, unfortunately people won’t park there, come into town to get their shopping, and then walk back. It just doesn’t happen.”
Moorabool Shire Council general manager of infrastructure Phil Jeffrey said there had been some slight delays in construction, but the project should be completed by the start of July.
“We’ve been communicating with the traders along the street and undergoing both night and day works and we’ve done our best to accommodate needs such as maintaining access to shops and properties,” Mr Jeffrey said.
“We needed to barricade parking off which has obviously caused a few concerns from traders, but it will create an extra seven car parks when completed.
“We will reach a couple of major milestones this week. We will open up the north side and the south side won’t be far behind.
“We needed to get it done. It was becoming a hazard. There were different types of paving treatments, tress falling apart. It’s a combination of an upgrade and a renewal.”
Mr Jeffrey said it was hoped the next stage of the project between Cowie and Fisken streets will be funded in next year’s council budget.
Mr Ireland said the whole street needed work as there were numerous trip hazards particularly at the western end of Inglis Street.