Media Release 26 November 2015

Council backs residents on proposed Chandler Highway duplication

26 November 2015

Yarra Council has backed the position of hundreds of community members, who believe VicRoads’ current ‘preferred option’ for the Chandler Highway duplication project would have an unacceptable impact on local residents and the environment, among other factors. 

Council also shares the community’s concerns that the planning for this project has been rushed, with VicRoads providing insufficient information and analysis of the impacts, and is calling on VicRoads to provide more detailed information on its proposal for a six-lane Chandler Highway bridge on the western side of the busy Alphington river crossing.  

A number of Alphington residents attended Yarra’s Council Meeting on 24 November, speaking passionately about their concerns that the proposed bridge duplication would be detrimental to their physical wellbeing and social and recreational amenity.

Yarra Mayor, Cr Roberto Colanzi, said Council had listened to the community and would continue to advocate on their behalf.

“Our community has told us loud and clear that they are not happy with VicRoads’ preferred option of a six-lane highway to the west.”

“That is why Council will also be calling on VicRoads to undertake a social impact assessment of all the proposed options for the design and alignment for Chandler Highway road widening and bridge duplication.”

“Importantly, the new road and bridge design should provide practical, integrated public transport options, and include consideration for the future construction of a Doncaster rail line.”

“We need a solution that moves people, not just vehicles,” Cr Colanzi said.

The full Council resolution from 24 November 2015:

1.           That Council:

 (a)         notes the report of officers regarding the Chandler Highway project by the State Government;

 (b)         resolves that at this time it is unable to make a fully informed and considered decision on the proposed Chandler Duplication alignment, as insufficient information and analysis on the impacts of the project and its options has been provided to date by VicRoads; and

 (c)         expresses disappointment at the haste with which this project is being planned and therefore the lack of information and analysis provided;

 (d)         reiterates its Council resolution of 20 October, specifically:

  (i)           the preferred design and locations would have an unacceptable impact on existing Alphington residents immediately to the west;

  (ii)         does not support the project for a six lane widening or a 6 lane bridge which will encourage traffic increase levels of congestion cause environmental damage and air pollution;

  (iii)        supports a road and bridge design that provides practical options for integrated public transport and better mobility for local residents requiring transport across the Yarra river and builds in future proofing, design options for the construction of the Doncaster rail

 (e)         writes to VicRoads to seek further information regarding the following:

  (i)           visual impacts of the project, including architectural and urban form considerations;

 (ii)         environmental impacts of the project;

  (iii)        impacts on the Yarra River of various options (including flood mitigation);

  (iv)        noise impacts and mitigation, specifically for the impacted residents of west Alphington;

  (v)         traffic impact on Chandler highway and the local and wider area;

  (vi)        any proposed improvements to the local and wider road network impacted by the project;

  (vii)      any proposed improvements to bus services in the area;

  (viii)     any proposed bicycle and pedestrian network upgrades, including connections to the Anniversary Trail and the underpass of the Main Yarra Trail;

  (ix)        the cost of the additional land acquisition for the eastern alignment;

  (x)         the Benefit Cost Ratio of the options, and project justification;

  (xi)        the visual impact of the proposed bridge for each of the alignment options;

  (xii)      any proposals for native vegetation offset plantings;

  (xiii)     community input from the consultation conducted by VicRoads and VicRoads responses;

  (xiv)     project timelines, planning processes to be followed, future consultation and engagement with the community and Councils;

  (xv)      details of a social impact assessment of all options; and

  (xvi)     any proposal on how the project will align with a proposed construction of Doncaster Rail; and

 (f)          that the Ministers of Roads, Public Transport, Planning and the Member for Northcote, and the Mayors of Darebin, Boroondara, and Banyule Councils, be advised of the Council resolution.

Further Information

Brooke Colbert, Manager of Communications, Advocacy, Engagement and Media on 9205 555 or 0409 267 439 or by email