First of all let us apologize for the delay in this reply. To save repetitive replies we have opted to write this as a team effort.
Before we answer your questions and explain the benefits we believe it appropriate to inform you of the history of the Street Beautification Project which included footpath paving, street furniture, gardens and tree planting.
In 1998/99 the State Government made funding available for street beautification. To enable us to take advantage of this, council held a number of public meetings inviting the public to help plan the street scaping. The final plan included most of the community’s ideas as well as accommodates the government guidelines.
The public meetings were well attended throughout the planing process enabling council to draw up firm plans in the year 2000. The project was expected to be staged over a number of years as has been the case. The community also decided the order that the particular stages be completed.
Now, as far as the costing is concerned as we pointed out, we received government funding. If council had not applied for and utilized such funding, then no doubt the funding would only go to some other council. These Government grants assist Council in maintaining their community assets, in this case the commercial centre of town and at the same time making the shopping centre a more inviting place to do business or visit.
As far as reducing the width of the road and vision is concerned the design of the tree placement does not reduce the thoroughfare as much as a parked vehicle. While it does reduce the number of parking bays in the street minimally the benefits of the project far out weigh the loss of parking and in fact we believe it will encourage people to spend more time going about their business as the opportunity to park their vehicles in the shade will prove to be a most welcome benefit.
The trees planted are specially selected as low maintenance and will require minimal water to establish. Any water used is well and truly compensated for by making the town a more pleasant and inviting place to live and visit. We are sure that the project will do nothing but benefit the town in future years.
Cr Darryl Donald
Cr Tom Bradley ESM
Cr Kevin Hauff