The routes that high-voltage powerlines will take near Ballarat has become clearer this morning, with a revised plan of the Western Victoria Transmission Network Project released.
The highly-anticipated map gives further insight into where the powerlines are planned, but still leaves a number of options on the table.
In particular there are a number of routes the power lines could take between Waubra and Creswick North, plus two vastly different options between Gordon and an area east of Coomadai.
AusNet Services' Western Victoria Transmission Network Project aims to build high-voltage powerlines above ground between Bulgana, north of Ararat, to Sydenham in Melbourne's west, using 85 metre tall pylons across rich farming districts.
See the map here (have your say below).
The map is broken down into the following sections:
Section 1 - Bulgana Terminal Station to south of Waubra
A new high-voltage electricity line starting at the Bulgana Terminal Station near Stawell alongside the existing line to the Waubra Terminal Station.
Section 2 - South of Waubra to Creswick North
Option 2.1: A corridor running north of the Waubra Terminal Station via Tourello and Creswick north to Blampied.
Option 2.2: A corridor running south of the Waubra Terminal Station via Learmonth then north to Tourello and across to Blampied.
Option 2.3: A corridor running south of the Waubra Terminal Station via Learmonth, north of Blowhard and Ascot, north to Creswick and east to Blampied.
Section 3 - Creswick North east to Railway Weir north of Gordon
The corridor will run from Creswick North, east to Blampied, then south of Pootilla to the Western Freeway. The eastern boundary of the corridor runs south past Mollongghip to the west of the Moorabool reservoir and then continues to the Railway Weir north of Gordon.
Potential terminal station locations are being explored within this section of the corridor.
Section 4 - Railway Weir north of Gordon to Coimadai
Option 4.1: A corridor running from Railway Weir, north of Ballan, to east of Coimadai and north of Pykes Creek.
Option 4.2: A corridor running from Railway Weir, south of Ballan, to north of Fiskville, south of Glenmore, east and then travelling north Bacchus Marsh and Melton West towards the east of Coimadai.
Section 5 - Coimadai to Sydenham
In this final corridor section, the corridor will run in a relatively direct line towards the existing Sydenham Terminal Station.
In a statement, AusNet says "the corridors have been narrowed from the broad area of interest after thousands of submissions and representations from the local community".
It said the new potential routes were identified to minimise impact on the environment, communities and new infrastructure.
The final route is expected to be announced mid-2021.
AusNet has also announced it is seeking nominations for members of three community consultation groups, in a bid to improve communication between the community and project coordinators.
AusNet Services Executive Project Director Stephanie McGregor said the company had taken community concerns on board.
"We've heard the concerns and valuable insights from the community and taken these into account alongside the technical studies as we narrow down the area of interest," she said in a statement.
"We encourage continued community input as we further investigate these corridors so that we can deliver this critical infrastructure with the least amount of impact.
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