Cr Andrew Bond: Independent candidate for Lake Ward

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On October 22nd I will once again be standing for re-election to the City of Port Phillip.

With Junction Ward being equally divided between each of the three new wards, there wasn’t an obvious ward in which to run, but I have decided to contest Lake Ward, the ward in which I reside.

As a Councillor for the past four years, I have been vocally opposed to the inappropriate development of our neighbourhoods by supporting the C113 Stage 1 Residential Zones that protected our local streets, and being the only Councillor to oppose the pro-developer C114 Stage 2 Residential Zones that greatly increased the permitted height and density in streets like Alma Rd, Grey St, Barkly St and many other secondary main roads where you are now witnessing some highly inappropriate developments taking place.

After 20 years of neglect from previous Councils and ward Councillors, who stood by whilst developers received Ministerial and VCAT approval for developments of unimaginable height and scale, I made C122 St Kilda Road South Structure Plan a priority. This four year process will shortly conclude and The Junction and St Kilda Road will have the protection they should have had a decade ago.

I acted decisively when called upon by the Fitzroy St Business Association and local residents’ groups to assist them after years of neglect, putting forward a notice of motion that delivering reduced footpath trading fees, 60 free 3 hour car parks in Jackson St, and the CCTV Camera’s that are currently being installed on Fitzroy St between Grey St and Acland St.

I have repeatedly spoken out against Council waste, such as the $4 million spent during the current term by the City Of Port Phillip on the latest St Kilda Triangle Masterplan. I have spoken out against the NGV Contemporary Gallery hoax, which was dreamed up and strategically leaked to the media in an attempt to fool some in our community into supporting the latest Triangle plan and process. The reality is that the current Triangle trajectory will never result in anything more than failed reality TV cooking programs and Thai Lady Boy shows. A prominent site like the Triangle deserves better.

I also supported the Acland St tram stop upgrade that is slowly being revealed to the delight of many who previously had doubts over the outcome, and I look forward to the plaza and the street being filled with pedestrians and diners as Acland St once again regains a uniqueness not present in any other Melbourne street.

But there is never time to stand still. I believe a park in the gravel path and palm tree lined style of O’Donnell Gardens, or Catani Gardens, is the best outcome for the Triangle site, and in the process provide that postcard perfect arrival point that St Kilda Beach currently lacks.

I want to see a multi-story car park be built above the existing Belford St and Irwell St council owned car parks, so that Acland St has not just Melbourne’s best tram stop and outdoor dining space, but ample nearby parking to cater to those that do choose to drive to St Kilda. A future car park can incorporate shops on the ground level, owned and curated by Council in order to influence the local retail mix, and ensure that Acland St remains relevant to both local residents and international visitors.

And I want to continue to protect St Kilda from developers who have taken advantage of the lack of planning controls both around the Junction, and on other major roads, to build inappropriate buildings that are slowly diminishing our enjoyment of our suburb.

So on October 22nd I ask you to support a candidate that will listen and act, as St Kilda deserves needs more than just small talk and hashtags. Vote 1 Andrew Bond.

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