The North East Link (NEL) is a proposed freeway standard new road linking the Metropolitan Ring Road (M80) to the Eastern Freeway at Bulleen Road.
We strongly oppose NEL corridor Option A as it will have a direct impact on Boroondara’s liveability. It will place the Koonung Creek Reserve, the Freeway Golf Course and the Boroondara Tennis Centre at risk. Traffic volumes, noise and pollution on Bulleen Road and Doncaster Road will increase.
Option A will affect the following amenities.
Boroondara Tennis Centre
The Boroondara Tennis Centre (BTC) will be acquired by the North East Link Project (NELP) and demolished.
The land will be used for ramps connecting the North East Link (tunnel) and Bulleen Road to the Eastern Freeway. The BTC will be rebuilt at another location; however, until the Minister’s announcement we do not have confirmation of where this will be.
Next to Melbourne Park, the BTC is the second largest tennis facility in Melbourne. It is a satellite venue for the Australian Open and hosts major tennis competitions throughout the year. We have advocated for the construction of the new BTC in advance of demolition of the existing facility to provide continuity for users and competition.
Freeway Golf Course
NELP will acquire the front 5 holes of the Freeway Golf Course (FGC) for on ramps connecting the Eastern Freeway to the NEL. Council has endorsed plans for the reinstatement of the FGC as an 18 hole, par 69 competition standard course.
The plans were included in the North East Link Environment Effects Statement (EES) Sports and Recreation Option:
Koonung Creek Reserve
Under the NEL reference design, Koonung Creek Reserve will lose approximately 20 per cent of public open space as a result of widening of the Eastern Freeway.
Early works are planned to begin in Boroondara in February 2020. These works involve relocating services such as sewer mains, water, electricity and gas to avoid disruption to these services during construction.
Early works are planned to occur at BTC, FGC, Koonung Creek Reserve, north of Hays Paddock and Chandler Park. Residents with questions about early works should contact NELP.
Use of local parks as construction laydown areas
NELP proposes to use Boroondara parkland abutting the Eastern Freeway as construction laydown sites for vehicles, materials and offices during the widening of the Eastern Freeway, construction of the Bulleen Interchange and construction of bus lanes.
We have advocated against the use of local parks as laydown areas to lessen impacts on local residents during the construction. Further information will be provided as NELP makes this available to Council.