An Open Forum "Our Bridge and Our Future" will be held at the Batemans Bay Soldiers Club on Saturday 13 July 2019 at 4.00pm.
Members of the community along with the local group Our Town Our Say are continuing to raise concerns around what is building to be "a very large elephant in the room" over the short term and long term consequences that the new four lane bridge, the town bypass, the isolation of the Clyde River foreshore and the proposed changes along that foreshore. In their announcement of the forum they ask Why accept the ordinary for $274 million?
A spokesperson for the group said of the meeting announcement "Despite assurances made by Transport for NSW (RMS) to the community in December 2018, to convene an urgent public meeting, they have not honoured their commitment. The community has therefore decided to take the lead.
"The new Batemans Bay bridge is under construction, scheduled for completion by 2023. It is a major civil engineering project which, by its sheer size, will impact the community and affect tourism, employment and commercial sustainability. Or is it just a piece of concrete with two carparks.
"Our once in a lifetime opportunity to use the new bridge, the gateway to the mid South Coast, to make a statement about our Bay will be missed if you don't speak up NOW." Our Town Our Say
"We have been presented with a standard concrete structure spanning two foreshores with just a few additional car parking spaces, restricted access and a road bottleneck which satisfies no-one. Plus open ponds with oil contaminated water, one on each foreshore.
Listed below are some of the major points listed by the Our Town Our Say group and their presenters to be addressed at the forum (with an OTOS comment following):
Is the foreshore activated and inviting? No, Clyde Street becomes a dead-end and the northern foreshore becomes a steeplechase for pedestrians and drivers. How will local businesses be impacted? Greatly because the CBD is isolated. The bridge is effectively a bypass. Are you happy with the pathway access from one shore to the next? You will walk almost 1 km more. Have safety concerns for all pedestrians as well as those with disability and mobility issues been addressed? We believe not. Will the cruise ships come to our Bay? No - the ill conceived short T-wharf will not accommodate the cruise ship passenger tenders. What of the turbulence from the three massive piers in the water? Experts claim this may cause flooding of the CBD and more erosion at Surfside. Will the children's playgrounds be exciting? No - ordinary, uninspiring and located where? Just metres from oil-contaminated water settling ponds. What happened to the boat ramps? One was washed away, the others are closed. Have the notorious bottleneck problems at the Kings/Princes Highway roundabout been addressed? No - RMS recommends just more ‘intelligent’ traffic lights. Have you been misled by glossy flyers and interactive videos and questionnaires? Yes, absolutely. The open public meeting on 13th July at the Batemans Bay Soldiers Club will enable attendees to ask questions from the floor.
OTOS advise those who may prefer to forward any issues or concerns they would like addressed by the panel, prior to the meeting, by getting in touch with OTOS team Co-Ordinator firstname.lastname@example.org Member for Bega, Andrew Constance, Transport for NSW and contractor, John Holland have been invited to attend.