Columns
10 years on Image

10 years on

Alma Doepel refit well underway
Read more >>

Away from the desk Image

Away from the desk

The little bent tree
Read more >>

Chamber update Image

Chamber update

School holiday fun
Read more >>

Docklander Image

Docklander

Dan’s a community man
Read more >>

Fashion Image

Fashion

Top five street style trends
Read more >>

Health and Wellbeing Image

Health and Wellbeing

Modern approach to musculoskeletal pain
Read more >>

Letters Image

Letters

Tram no Metro - Bike danger
Read more >>

New Businesses Image

New Businesses

Tony’s back in business
Read more >>

Owners Corporation Law Image

Owners Corporation Law

Take more care with your insurance
Read more >>

Pets Corner Image

Pets Corner

Best of friends
Read more >>

Precinct Perspectives

My view of Docklands; from NewQuay
Read more >>

SkyPad Living Image

SkyPad Living

Sharing our vertical commons
Read more >>

Street Art Image

Street Art

Goodbye from Blender Studios
Read more >>

The District

A reading room for our community
Read more >>

We Live Here Image

We Live Here

A Royal Commission into industry scandals
Read more >>

Letters to the Editor - April 2012

27 Mar 2012

Do council workers know anything about Docklands?

I read with interest the comments by a council spokesperson in the March edition entitled “Cut us some slack – traders”.

The spokesperson justified the installation of paid parking meters by saying “These conditions are in place to ensure that the on-street parking spaces in the precinct are not occupied by long-term parkers either working in or attending events, such as the football, held in Docklands.”

The spokesperson should have checked their facts before discussing the two-hour metered parking spaces in Bourke St between Merchant and Cumberland streets.

These spaces are only metered until 6.30pm, meaning anyone attending an evening event at Etihad Stadium can park in these spaces at 4.30pm, pay for two hours and stay there until the event has finished (a night AFL match usually ends around 10.15pm).

This “condition” prevents visitors to residents of the Merchant apartments at 838 Bourke St or someone wishing to park to go to the Subway at 836 Bourke St from ever finding a parking space at night!

Perhaps the council spokesperson could provide a follow up comment about this.

Further the spokesperson said consistency was needed across the municipality.

Could the spokesperson please explain how the spaces in Bourke St are metered only to 6.30pm. whilst the spaces in both Merchant and Cumberland streets are metered until 7.30pm, and those in Lorimer Street are to 11.00pm?

Further to this point is the fact that in 2010 Mayor Doyle extended parking hours for meters in the CBD till 8.30pm!

It appears that council is only consistent with having inconsistencies!

John Jackson
Docklands

The quiet enjoyment of Docklands

Summer in Docklands brings many joys, with long-awaited evenings reserved for out-door activities. The fact that so many people turn out for a stroll or meal outdoors at the first sign of a warm evening suggests that most of us anticipate the delights of balmy nights following the winter hibernation.

When simple pleasures such as ice creams and iced coffee confirm that summer has arrived, so unfortunately, does the discordant din of motor cycles and trucks, whose makers revel in the opportunity to enjoy balmy evenings in their own special way.

Why is this so? Who are these people who are so privileged to disturb the peaceful sleep of many for the enjoyment of the few? Who are these aficionados of din who wait all year to emerge on warm evenings with their cacophony penetrating the night?

They are Harley Davidson bikers who enjoy their outlaw status so much that they remove the legally-mandated mufflers from their distinctively odd-firing motor cycles to reinforce the bad-boy image of real or imagined lawlessness.

They are drivers of predominantly American trucks whose mighty diesel engines employ the oddly named “Jake Brake” which work by heinously releasing energy from the engine into the exhaust system at the precise moment it would normally be used to create driving power, thus turning kinetic energy into sound energy, cast angrily into the night sky.

Never mind the metaphor of evil inference with the natural laws of a diesel engine, on a warm night you can hear the devil doing his evil work as the sound reverberates off buildings and tunnels for the entertainment of catatonic long-distance drivers.

Why spoil this enjoyment of the privileged few? Because their noise so rudely intrudes into the homes and places of quiet enjoyment in contradiction of the principle so well articulated by John Locke and others, that the rule of law is intended to enable the common man to enjoy the quiet security of his home.

By any test I am common enough to determine whether or not the “quiet enjoyment of my own home” has been intruded upon. In fact, with the aid of my trusty sound-level meter, it has been disturbed by trucks almost doubling the ambient background of 34.0 dBA, to a roaring 60.0 dBA (from a distance of about 200 metres) exceeded only by Harley Davidson motorcycles coming in at 68.8 dBA.

Far be it from me to complain about the noisy wheels of progress, of the trains, planes, police cars and fire trucks that penetrate my double-glazed castle, but I can see no benefit to me or to the majority of humanity, from this selfish pleasure of so few.

Who is to blame, you ask, optimistic in your belief that such self indulgence should not be tolerated by those whose duty it is to make and enforce the laws to protect the innocent? Well, thanks for asking, but here lies the real problem. Trucks are controlled by Australian

Design Rules which specify noise limits for engines under acceleration, but not for braking.

Confronted by this dilemma, VicRoads thoughtfully suggest that local councils should erect “advisory” signs asking truck drives to kindly not use compression braking in built-up areas.

Recently, it was reported that VicRoads is conducting experiments with sound cameras to take pictures of noisy trucks in city residential areas. No mention of what happens to the snaps however, as they apparently remain without regulatory power to enforce noise limits for truck compression brakes.

Motor cycles though, do have noise limits imposed by Australian Design Rules, but no-one from VicRoads, the police, the EPA or Melbourne City Council has shown even the slightest interest in any attempt to enforce the law. They are bikers, you know, outlaws!

Are all of the authorities so powerless as to have no way to remove this impediment to peacefulness?

Please someone, do something to resolve this farce and allow Docklands to become the beautiful place it is able to be.

Warren Mills
Docklands

Stay in touch with Docklands. Subscribe to FREE monthly e-Newspaper.

You must be registered with Docklands News to be able to post comments.
To register, please click here.

Docklands is Beautiful