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Congo Road North remains closed indefinitely

The unsealed section of Congo Road North that traverses private property is to remain closed indefinitely as Council now looks at its options. The land owner has advised that his insurance premiums have become unaffordable whilst the section of road remains in what has been identified by Council as high risk due to a risk assessment carried out by them that identified trees were too close to the edge of the road to satisfy the Standard required to satisfy insurers. The road will remain closed until such time as the risks are "mitigated" Council had moved to remove three of ten trees they 'identified' as presenting risk along with seven others they suggested could be removed to improve alignment and sight distance under the guise of 'safety' however their intentions came to an abrupt halt when they were made aware that legally they could not remove a single tree and that they were limited to only lopping branches found to overhang the road way. Until such time as Council gains new legal advice that might force the hand of the owner to allow the return of passage, especially for school busses and emergency service vehicles, the Congo Road North will remain closed. With the approach of summer holidays and the influx of visitors to the Congo village the mishandling by Council of the road issue that has brought it to a Mexican Standoff could not have come at a worse time. Council's failure to engage the issue of a community used road traversing over private property for over thirty years is now at loggerheads and has further undermined any trust the community had that Council was open and transparent in its dealings when it came to consultation and communication. For travel to and from Congo detour via Congo Road south and Bingie Road to access the highway.


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