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In Parliament

 

Adjournment - VicRoads Land

   Thursday, 25 February 2016

Mr T. SMITH (Kew) — My adjournment matter this afternoon is for the Minister for Roads and Road Safety. The matter concerns the sale of a parcel of land at 4 Studley Park Road, Kew, by VicRoads, a statutory body under his purview. The action I seek from the minister is that instead of selling the property at 4 Studley Park Road — the Dorothy Rogers Reserve — it be simply transferred to the Boroondara City Council. Advice was given last year that the Department of Treasury and Finance intended to sell VicRoads properties throughout Victoria. There are two such properties in my electorate, one in Kilby Road and one in Studley Park Road.

I raise this with the Minister for Roads and Road Safety. I am happy to take advice if it is not appropriate to raise it with him, and that I should be raising it with the Treasurer. But given it is owned by VicRoads, I took the view that it was best to raise it with the Minister for Roads and Road Safety in the first instance.

My simple concern is this. The property at 4 Studley Park Road abuts a neighbourhood residential zone. It is a lucrative site for high-rise development. Kew Junction itself is substantially developed and we want to ensure that those parcels of land are protected for public amenity and remain a public park. Hence I would like to see that parcel of land simply transferred from VicRoads to the council. The council has indicated that it does not have the resources to purchase this parcel of land. It was given a first right of refusal, and I believe that it has undertaken to do that. I would simply say again, Kew Junction itself is heavily developed. I have written to local residents who have expressed a degree of concern about the pending sale of this site. I think VicRoads should simply transfer the property, particularly at 4 Studley Park Road, to the council.

The Kilby Road site is obviously of concern as well, but it is not a potential development site given it abuts the Eastern Freeway. Once again I ask the minister to speak to VicRoads to see if agreement can be reached with Boroondara City Council.