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Bikes and boots smokescreen to CBD parking plans

Wearing their best designer summer sandals and flip-flopping around the streets of Bendigo carpeted in autumnal colours, the Bendigo Bunch have spent weeks telling us mere mortal ratepayers and residents that walking and cycling are the answer to CBD parking and traffic.

The CEO and councillors think it’s okay for the good citizens of Epsom blessed with so much spare time they can allocate 90 minutes to pound the paths into Bendigo and visit a dud GovHub on land they once owned and Maiden Gully’s growing population of families and retirees to dust off the trusty treadlie for a 30-minute cycle into the CBD.

Suddenly, with speed greater than a Malvern Star, the Bendigo Bunch has announced amid the bikes and boots smokescreen that it needs some community consultation on the future of parking in the Bendigo CBD.

It’s amazing that there can be a parking community consultation forum organised by council despite CEO Craig Niemann claiming on local TV that that approach was so “oh yesterday” when brought to account for lack of engagement and consultation on the flawed GovHub – selling prime CBD land, handing the sale cheque straight back to government and paying rent for the next three generational rebirths of the daggy Dragster.

So yet again, it raises some very serious questions about GovHub that will probably again have CEO and council backpedalling at the breakneck speed you’d get clocked at freewheeling down Big Hill.

  • Did councillors know there was a need to increase parking capacity in the CBD to accommodate those 600 workers being relocated from the suburbs to a central GovHub, workers so time-poor the Adidas shoes stay in the cupboard?

  • Did they consider options for adding two storeys to the current municipal offices and including new carpark facilities at the site for a new income stream?

  • How much more parking is need because of GovHub?

  • Why are council considering abolition of new developments to have parking requirements?

  • Why does GovHub even need to be in CBD when there is insufficient parking available now and plenty of land available out in the suburbs?

Council’s parking forum is on 27 May at the Engine Room, coming nicely a few days after the bikes and boots consultation finishes.

Make your way through the smokescreen, take along your bike helmets and ask these questions of CEO and council.

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