Port Macquarie-Hastings Council has confirmed it plans six, three hour information sessions in relation to the planned orbital road investigation corridor.
The information sessions will also give residents the chance to view the comprehensive feasibility study.
Council has been under pressure from the community over the planned road corridor since announcing plans to roll out community engagement in November 2018.
A silent protest at the December council meeting included many residents holding banners and signs opposing the planned road.
Several action groups representing various areas along the proposed orbital route have continued to voice their disapproval of the planned route.
The information drop-in sessions start on March 2 with members of the project team available to answer questions while viewing the overall project.
Mayor Peta Pinson said council will continue to provide the community with the opportunity to better understand the orbital road project proposal, and that council are delivering on that commitment.
“We’ve received a lot of feedback from residents, businesses and property owners within the identified investigation area and we will continue these conversations,” the mayor said.
“This is a project which is important as a long-term solution to reducing traffic congestion, and addressing our region’s future transport needs, and community input is needed so council can make the best possible decisions about the next steps for the project.
“As councillor’s we want to make sure that as many of our community as possible have been part of the conversation before any final decisions about an orbital road are made,” Mayor Pinson said.
Sanctuary Springs resident Neil Morgan says he wants to read through the traffic survey and feasibility study at the drop-in sessions.
“We’ve seen nothing so far,” he said.
“We did have a discussion with the mayor some time ago where the Sanctuary Springs developer gave a history of the project.
“Some of those discussions centred on making Lake Road the most viable option given it is an existing road that would be better suited to an orbital road.”
Mr Morgan said Lake Road does not affect any existing residential areas, would not require an act of parliament to revoke the Lake Innes Nature Reserve and would cost just one third the price tag of the council proposed route.
I really don’t know what to expect (from the drop-in sessions).Neil Morgan
“I really don’t know what to expect (from the drop-in sessions),” Mr Morgan added.
Council says the drop-in sessions have been scheduled at various times, including during the day, after business hours and on weekends to make sure everyone has the chance to drop in and have their say.
The community can attend the drop-in sessions at any time during the set three-hour period to learn more about the project, with council’s technical and community engagement teams’ being available to answer questions.
Community members that can’t make a drop-in session but would like to learn about the project and provide feedback. The website provides a range of project information, including frequently asked questions, a project information brochure and a place to submit direct on-line feedback.
In addition to the drop-in sessions and feedback via the website, the community are being encouraged to complete an online survey to further gather views held by the community on the proposed Orbital Road.
“The proposal of an Orbital Road is a huge opportunity for Port Macquarie as we continue to grow as a regional city, and Council is committed to engaging with our community on important projects like this so we can make the best possible decisions based on the interests and concerns of our community,” Cr Pinson said.
“All community members interested in the project are encouraged to come along and attend one of the drop-in sessions, complete the survey and visit our website to learn more and provide us with your valuable feedback.”
Community information drop-in session times are:
- Session 1 – Saturday March 2, 11am – 2pm - Westport Club – Hastings Room
- Session 2 – Tuesday March 5, 11am – 2pm - Emerald Downs Community Centre
- Session 3 – Tuesday March 5 , 5:30pm – 8:30pm - Westport Club – Hastings Room
- Session 4 – Saturday March 9, 11am – 2pm - Emerald Downs Community Centre
- Session 5 – Tuesday March 12, 11am – 2pm - Westport Club – Hastings Room
- Session 6 – Tuesday March 12, 5:30pm – 8:30pm - Westport Club – Hastings Room
For more information and to complete the online survey visit haveyoursay.pmhc.nsw.gov.au/orbitalroad
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