Villawood plans face resident opposition

A GROUP of Strathfieldsaye residents is worried that a Villawood Properties development will cause flooding. 

Laura Patterson said residents feared properties around Emu Creek were already flooding and new houses would exacerbate the problem. 

But Villawood Properties development manager Julian Perez said the plans, which are in early stages, accounted for drainage concerns. 

Ms Patterson refused to say how many people were opposed to the development, but the NoLake Villawood Facebook page has 15 friends. 

“It’s important to say we’re not against development, but we are against this one,” Ms Patterson said in an open letter.  

“The site is unsuitable, it is not in the public interest, it may have negative social, economic and environmental impacts for existing and future residents (and) it may increase the risk to life from fire and flood.”

The development is set between Strathfieldsaye village and Lake Eppalock and Ms Patterson is concerned run-off and storm water will flood nearby properties. 

“Strathfieldsaye already suffers from lack of educational, transport, health and community services and emergency infrastructure and some residents feel that both the location and size of the development is inappropriate,” she said. 

But Mr Perez said Villawood was drawing up a strategic development plan for the site and had worked with several agencies on flood management.

“We’ve worked with the Catchment Management Authority, the council and we’ve got our own flood engineer, and all the advice we’ve been given indicates we won’t adversely affect flooding,” he said. 

“There’s already a big flood zone in the area and that will become open space.”

Mr Perez said Villawood would be adding to an existing estate that had been rezoned for new housing 

“We’re prepared to work with anyone that has any concerns,” he said. 

“This is early days, there’s a bit more work to do yet.

“This is good for land supply in Bendigo and Strathfieldsaye.”

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