Public Transport. Important. At What Cost?
It is appropriate to begin with an acknowledgement for the commitment of the government to improve public transport.
I don’t think anyone disputes that the system is only getting more congested and there is simply no space for more cars in the CBD.
In April 2017, City Square, the only open space in the CBD, was closed for the start of the construction of the new Town Hall underground railway station. Many leaflets have been left in the mailboxes of residents of the Capitol Building with information about the works, maps and schedules. All communications assures that minimum disruption will be maintained at all times…
The so called “acoustic shed” meant to be completed in late 2018 and provide protection from noise and pollution. It is now August 2019, the shed is only half completed and we are heading towards three years of daily jack hammering, drilling, cutting and piling with no protection.
As far as I’m aware, there have been no consultation with residents, no measurement instruments installed at the Capitol Building, no offer to better insulate the old thin glass windows of the building, no transparency about delays and a general culture of dismissing complaints.
“The auditor found that the first stage of work has been successful in preparing the project for the main construction phase and that land acquisitions had cost less than expected”
“Notwithstanding these positive results, the early works phase has taken longer than originally planned and has cost more than originally budgeted,”
A string of articles in “The Age” about construction delays:
Even if I leave out all of the other construction, events and excessive sound generating activities in the CBD, even if we put aside almost three years of daily noise pollution from 7am to 7pm Monday to Friday, I strongly believe that it is unfair to endure nearly a 100 Saturday mornings beginning with loud jack hammers and countless “necessary” night works.
I have contacted the council and the Metro Tunnel authority several times during the first few months of demolition, Including visiting the Metro Shop on Swanston Street and offering my balcony for installation of noise measurement devices.
None of the answers or information I received back had made any effort to consider the effect of noise on residents of the Capitol Building or gave a clear explanation of my rights in terms of quiet enjoyment. In fact, I was advised that it is the responsibility of the builder to monitor and meet noise regulations and I should contact them.
I think this is ridiculous and I’m getting the feeling the council and the Metro Tunnel planners either think I’m stupid or deaf. I’m neither, and this website is my contribution to the awareness of the adverse effect of exposure to unwanted noise and the start of a public process of assessing the damage and demanding compensation.
To get further insight of how big construction companies abuse residents and how authorities turn a blind eye to it see post about the roller door here: