Land grab for road upgrades

By Alesha Capone

Wyndham council has signalled its intention to acquire eight parcels of land in Tarneit and Truganina, in order to carry out three “high priority” road projects.

At a public meeting last week, the council voted to amend the Wyndham Planning Scheme to apply a public acquisition overlay (PAO) “to facilitate the land acquisition for the projects and timely delivery of the infrastructure”.

The council will have to seek permission from the Minister for Planning to amend its planning scheme before acquiring the land for the road projects, which are:

•The Woods Road and Dohertys Road intersection upgrade (affecting one parcel of land).

•The Leakes Road duplication between Derrimut Road and Tarneit Road (four parcels of land).

•The Boundary Road and Derrimut Road intersection upgrade (three parcels of land).

A council report into the matter stated that it was “preferable to reach agreement with landowners for the voluntary transfer of their land for road projects” but “some of the landowners have indicated that they do not wish to sell any part of their properties or are in dispute with council regarding land value”.

“It is therefore thought appropriate in the interests of timely infrastructure delivery to package up the current projects and for the PAO option to be pursued,” the report stated.

The report also stated that the intersection of Woods Road and Dohertys Road has been “identified as a dangerous intersection during peak times” and that traffic signals were required to improve safety for motorists.

It also stated that the Leakes Road PAO “may encroach or get close to some existing dwellings”. The report described the Boundary Road and Derrimut Road intersection as having “a poor crash history”.

“Council has recently corresponded with the Department of Transport on the need to expedite an upgrade to this intersection, and the PAO proposed as part of this amendment is an important catalyst for further discussions and actions from state government in this regard,” the report stated.