Business and community leaders say urgent action is essential to address the lack of infrastructure at Colac West which is causing major problems for commercial growth in an area earmarked for business.
Polwarth MP Richard Riordan says the issues, which include a lack of access to services including a sewer, natural gas and NBN, are “solvable” but three levels of government, led by Colac Otway Shire Council, and relevant authorities need to act.
“We’ve got a situation at Rhys Evans where the shire has rezoned the land commercial, but essentially there’s no sewer, no drainage, no fit-to-purpose road, no internet connection and no gas,” Mr Riordan said.
“We’ve got businesses investing millions of dollars, and basic infrastructure isn’t on Barwon Water’s radar, and VicRoads are expecting businesses like Rhys Evans to put in service lanes, while we’ve seen others go in without turning lanes.
“And now we’re going to see traffic zig-zagging all along the road when it would have been better for businesses like Rhys Evans and the Liberty service station to have given the money to VicRoads to go towards building proper passing lanes from the old high school site to the Blue Church corner.
“It’s inadequate, dangerous, and it’s upsetting business owners that they’ve had to spend this money on a temporary fix.
“You’ve got Telstra pits right on the edge of the white line, so they need to be relocated because vehicles drive over them and smash the covers and the technicians don’t want to sit on the edge of a highway to fix the lines.
“The NBN finishes about 100 metres short of Rhys Evans, and there’s businesses and farms beyond that,” he said.
See today’s Colac Herald for more.