Tunnel Vision

Hi everyone,

Lots has been happening on the East-West tunnel front over the last couple of weeks. We had over 90 people at our first meeting at Fitzroy Pool so many thanks for your time and commitment.

First up, our group now has a name: Residents Against the Tunnel (RAT) so we are the RATs. Our email addresses are:

info@rat.org.au (to reach admin ie more for outsiders)

If you would like to be more involved & want to know what is happening on a day-to-day basis please contact us (at info@rat.org.au) and we will add you onto the active group email address.

Next meeting

this Sunday 22 September @ 5pm at the Leinster Arms Hotel

Gold St, Collingwood

We plan to hold meetings every Sunday 5pm – location to be confirmed

 

current actions

Don’t Bin it – Vote! RACV Board elections

The RACV has 1.1 million members in Victoria, & their own internal polling shows that 70% of their members want public transport instead of more roads yet they continue to advocate for big new toll roads at the expense of everything else. Only 7% of RACV members actually vote so it is not surprising that there’s such a gulf between the board and the people they’re meant to represent.

Here’s an article that explains the fight that’s going on…

The Coalition of Transport Action Groups is preparing a scorecard on the public transport vs East-West Link credentials of the candidates which will be available on Monday. Check out our website then (Trent McCarthy is a Greens Councillor at City of Darebin who is running on a pro-PT ticket)

In the meantime, if you’re an RACV member, look for your voting forms that accompany the current issue of the Royal Auto magazine

Successes to date

The movement against the EW link and tunnel has achieved significant coverage and support both in the community, Melbourne generally and importantly, in the media.

Most importantly, the residents of the EVO apartments have had a tremendous win and have been given an offer by the State Government to purchase their properties!

The EVO scenario was clearly absurd, and there are many people in similar situations.  The EVO success hopefully gives other people being disastrously affected by the East-West tunnel more ammunition in our fight.

One of the options for EVO apartment owners allows them stay in their apartment but get compensation for the partial acquisition of some of their common land and for the loss of value on their property and the impact on them of the project.

A number of people are in the same situation, and they deserve the same consideration.  The government uses the words “fair & reasonable”. Obviously they are not being fair if their offer only extends to some people.

We need to get more personal stories into the media to demonstrate that there are other properties that are being affected in similar ways to the EVO apartments. We have media contact details – let us know if you think you’ve got a story.

It is very early days for RAT, but we are in the process of setting up structures and working parties on a wide range of issues so contact us if you want to be involved, or stay informed through our website.

 

What else you can do:

  • Check our website regularly for upcoming events and resources to help you lobby the Linking Melbourne Authority (LMA), local members and the media.
  • Attend our regular meetings held every Sunday at 5pm.  Check our website for details. Sometimes we will have speakers – who will be advertised in upcoming email newsletters
  • Leave your contact details on our website if we don’t already have them – we are developing a data-base of names for our fortnightly emails and newsletter.  Let us know if you are available at relatively short notice to show a presence at Parliament House, the CBD or in the affected areas when something is happening.
  • Help us identify experts to inform and support the communities affected by this project.  If you have or know anyone who has skills and contacts in media, structural engineering, respiratory health/pollution, marketing, IT, social media campaigning or any other relevant skills please let us know via our website or email.
  • Come to the weekly Friday morning protest from 7.15 am to 8.30 am on the corner of Alexandra Parade and Hoddle Street at the Eastern Freeway exit.  Placards provided.
  • Join a working group
  • Help us organise a street party to celebrate public transport & people connecting together
  • Spread the word!  Let your friends, family and colleagues know about RAT, give them our website details, encourage them to sign up! There are a lot of affected residents & businesses who need support
  • Some RATs have been door knocking around their area. If you would like to join up with them please let us know.
  • Write/email/tweet the LMA and parliamentarians (on both sides of the fence!). A list of some questions to ask them is on our website – you may have others.  A contact list is also on our website.

When corresponding with the media or parliamentarians, please feel free to sign off with your name and then say you are from RAT. The more they hear the name the more organised they will know we are, and that we are not just a small group of ratbags (haha)!

 

Just like the Rats of Tobruk, we will persist, unless the unwinnable has been won. We are the David to their Goliath, but we know who won there as well.