It is with dis-belief that I read an article in The Courier, that council officers are seeking to change the zoning of 12a Albert Street, Sebastopol, noting that the site is surplus to council requirements in the future.
The article states that the site is currently being used for car parking for surrounding businesses.
For your information this is the very reason that the former Borough of Sebastopol purchased the site and created an off street parking facility for the use of local businesses and their customers. (Now, that is what I call forward thinking, to say the least).
A male /female toilet block was also built on the site by the Sebastopol Borough Council and has since been demolished by the present Ballarat City Council.
A security and access flood light was also installed on the site by the Sebastopol Borough Council and has since been demolished by the present Ballarat City Council.
If my memory serves me correctly, this site is the only off street parking site located in Sebastopol and owned by the City of Ballarat and now you want to flog it off to make a quid.
Councillors, you would be well aware that your council is spending squillions of dollars in attempting to create parking facilities around our great city and yet your officers are recommending that you get rid of the off street parking site in Sebastopol.
May I suggest that, before making a decision on this matter, that councillors take the time to travel to the "Top End" of Sebastopol and note the progress taking place in that area. (Quite frankly, you may be surprised at the amount of activity going on in this vicinity.)
You will also be well aware that VicRoads are about to spend millions to replace the roundabout just one block away, to relieve traffic congestion in the area, yet the recommendation is, to remove a ratepayer owned car park in the vicinity, because it is surplus to council requirements.
Quite frankly, councillors, it is my view that you are being conned by the recommending officer/s, that this off street carpark is surplus to use by your ratepayers and business owners who use this facility.
By the way, if "P" signs were displayed at the entrances the community may know that the said car park is available for their use.
In fact, as I write this email, my memory recalls a large arch-formed car park site was installed by the Sebastopol Borough Council and later removed by the present Ballarat City Council.
I may have a curious and inquiring mind, but the question could be asked,
"Is there an ulterior motive somewhere along the way to get rid of this car park for other purposes?"
I certainly hope not.
Councillors, I look forward to your wise decision in this matter, knowing full well that off street parking is a priority in our municipality and this site is just one small link in that chain.