Vincent: 12 month reprieve for concrete batching plants

Vincent: 12 month reprieve for concrete batching plants

TWO controversial concrete batching plants in the City of Vincent will continue to operate for a further 12 months.

The council allowed the extensions for the Hanson Construction Materials site on Edward Street and the Holcim site on Claisebrook Road until October 2018.

Several concerned residents spoke against the applications at the July 12 special meeting, saying they no longer fitted in with their locations.

Chris Carter, whose medical practice is near the Claisebrook Road site, said he wanted the plant gone.

“The ambience has changed to high-density residential,” Dr Carter said.

“The argument that these plants have to be close to building sites is spurious.”

Vanessa Bullcok said the plants would “kill” the vibrancy of the community if they remained.

Hanson operations manager Anthony Clarkson defended the batching plant and its place in the community.

“The ongoing uncertainty has had a negative effect,” he said.

“Hanson provides jobs and diversity of jobs. Not everyone can work in an office or hospitality.”

He said the company had been in the community for 50 years and had already relocated in 2000 to allow for the Graham Farmer Freeway.

A Holcim representative said the plant had to remain because access to building sites in the CBD would become increasingly difficult in the future.

Deputy Mayor Roslyn Harley was adamant the extensions not be granted.

“Time’s up,” she said.

“We are damned if we do and damned if we don’t.

“I am aware of the risk of refusing these applications, but these companies knew for a long time their deadlines.”

She said she expected the council would be back in the same position in 12 months to decide another application for an extension.

Councillor Joshua Topelberg put forward an amendment to the motion to send a clear message about why the extensions would be allowed.

“It is considered fair and reasonable for council to grant an extension of time to allow the long-term planning framework of the area to be finalised through adoption of the City of Vincent Draft Town Planning Scheme No. 2, under which council has consistently resolved that the subject site and its surrounds must be zoned residential/commercial R160,” he said.

“The continued ongoing operation of the concrete batching plant on the subject site is entirely inconsistent with and detrimental to the City’s future vision for the Claisebrook Precinct to transition to a mixed-use area and the community’s zoning and development expectations for the area.”

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