The 2010 Melton North Precinct Structure Plan (PSP) contains areas for commercial/retail, community facilities and an active open space including a footy/cricket oval. The original plans specified these developments for 2018 but there are no signs that council is considering building any of these facilities any time soon.
A 2017 amendment specified the community centre’s provision trigger was ‘No later than 200 occupied dwellings in the precinct.’
The ABS has data on the number of occupied dwellings at the 2021 census. In the 7 SA1 (Statistical Area Level 1) areas that within the PSP, there were 871 occupied private dwellings.
Digging a bit deeper, at the time of the 2021 census, 670 or 77% of the households contained families, 33.6% of residents were 25-40 years old, 30.8% were less than 15 years old and amazingly 13% of the 2,622 people in the area were less than 5 years old which really shows how young the families in the area are. Clearly, these resources are overdue for the quickly growing community
Infact, there were more newborns (74 of them) and one-year-olds (75 of them) than any other age at the time! Next highests were 31 y.o. (x72) and 25 y.o. (x71).
The demographic projections in the 2010 PSP foresore this exact situation:
Comparing the satellite view from before the Census and now shows hundreds more houses in the area now and according to Vicplan, there are currently 1,283 properties.
The PSP specifies:
This is a payment we made back in 2016. Council has received almost $1.5m in contributions from residents in the area who have seen nothing for it.
And finally, the playground located on Seed St in Kurunjang has been significantly damaged since March 2022, posing a safety hazards for children. Chunks of rubber are missing, leaving exposed concrete that can cause accidents and injuries. It’s sad to see such neglect of the area for so long.
Cr Vandenberg posted a snippet from the 25 September Council meeting were the council proudly proclaimed it had $380m in surplus with $23m carried over from the previous financial year.
So I decided to throw a couple of questions to Melton Council for their November meeting:
But the questions ended up being condensed down until they were borderline redacted of critical context:
Rather incredulous answers there!
So the community centre and connected Kindergarten is set to be delivered when the current most populous ages will be 6-7 years old and already in primary school, and they won’t get their footy/cricket oval until they’re 13-14 years old and in secondary school!
To rub salt into it, apparently the council has inspected the broken playground at least 90 times and had ‘detailed independent audits’ on it 7 times and done nothing about it?!
The most important thing I think needs to happen is that Council needs to provide a progress report of their obligations on all outstanding Precinct Structure Plans.
Other questions that I will seek answers from council about:
- Why has council ignored the PSP and not prioritised the Community Centre and Active Open Space for development?
- How much funding is currently allocated for the construction of the community centre and sports ground?
- How can local playgrounds be in such a state of disrepair if it’s being inspected weekly and audited quarterly? When will the Pennyroyal Park be repaired?
- When is the last major part of the precinct at 490-528 Coburns Rd going to be subdivided?