The following Letters to the Editor were sent in following this story about a $2.6 million budget shortfall in funding for the Bridge Mall project.
The proposed project will go to vote at the City of Ballarat council meeting on Wednesday night.
Letters begin below.
I admired the precision in the two costings, $17,675,000 and $17,653,000.
Both will be wrong for this little useless tourist drive down the Mall with not much parking if any.
What a crazy idea.
What could be done with that money?
Homeless accommodation, new parks, glass recycling for example.
Buy half of the buildings, demolish them and open up the area into something nice for us all.
Kenn Hubbard, Redan.
IN OTHER NEWS
Why wouldn't the flow of traffic go from East to West as there would be a far greater spin off for the Bridge Mall Traders to benefit from as cars/tourists enter the city from the Melbourne side of the street?
Jan Livingston, Lake Gardens.
I believe if traffic is only to be one way, it should be east to west.
The entrance into Ballarat from Melbourne makes more sense due to more visitors and first impression of the city.
George Vincent, Mt Pleasant.
I strongly object to council's proposed $15 million spend of ratepayers money on reopening the Bridge Mall to vehicle traffic.
Firstly I feel Council should revisit the reasons for creating, at great expense, the Mall in the first place.
Secondly, the impact of the creation of suburban shopping centres such as Lucas, Delacombe Town Centre, Stocklands which have undercover shopping, plus the various shopping strips, which offer free parking, have had a detrimental effect on central Ballarat shopping precincts.
Thirdly, the effect of online shopping. Fourthly, Council should look at the number of vacant shops in Sturt Street and other side streets, where there is two way traffic, and a similar problem to the Bridge Mall, that is a lack of customers.
Even though I feel sorry for those affected by the lack of business, it should not be the role of ratepayers to " bail out" businesses which are struggling.
It would possibly make very little difference to their plight, and if you go back to the reasons why the Mall was established in the first place, it could possibly worsen their situation.
I trust Councillors give my concerns their most serious consideration.
Keith Pitman, Alfredton.
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