Council awaits answers on Moonee Ponds Creek trail

Council awaits answers on Moonee Ponds Creek trail
Sean Car

The City of Melbourne is still seeking clarity from the state government as to when the Moonee Ponds Creek trail in Docklands will be reinstated, despite Development Victoria (DV) saying it was working to “identify options”.

Councillors were scathing at their May 21 Future Melbourne Committee (FMC) meeting after renewed efforts to gain information and updates from the state regarding all-important plans for the creek corridor and neighbouring Macaulay continued to fall on deaf ears.

In considering the next steps of the City’s advocacy plan and improvement projects for Moonee Ponds Creek, Cr Rohan Leppert lashed the government for failing to respond to any of its requests for information since March.

At their FMC meeting on March 19, councillors criticised the state government for its lack of progress in revitalising the city section of the creek and called for answers as to when the trail in Docklands would be reopened to the public.

As part of a motion calling for the immediate release of the Moonee Ponds Creek Implementation Plan, Lord Mayor Sally Capp wrote to Minister for Planning Sonya Kilkenny shortly after the meeting seeking answers for the five-year delay.

The Lord Mayor had also sought answers from Minister for Development Victoria Colin Brooks regarding the ongoing closure of the creek trail in Docklands, which closed in November 2020 to enable the construction of Sound Stage 6 at Docklands Studios.

Speaking in May, Cr Leppert said despite the council’s “very best” efforts to get more information from the state government, it hadn’t received a single response to any of its enquiries.

But Group Head Precincts at DV Niall Cunningham told Docklands News in June that it was “working with City of Melbourne to identify options to reinstate the portion of the Moonee Ponds Creek Trail next to the Docklands Studios.”

Docklands News can confirm that following its enquiries, Lord Mayor Sally Capp did receive a letter from Minister Brooks on June 25 in response to the council’s enquiries regarding the ongoing closure of the trail in Docklands.

DV reminded the community that an alternative route, which was established prior to construction works commencing to provide access for trail users in consultation with the Bicycle Network, City of Melbourne and DEWLP (now DEECA), remained operational while it assessed its options. •

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