No MCC for Elwood

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The Melbourne Cricket Club (MCC) is developing a new 'world class' hockey field on the only remaining grassed area at Elwood Secondary College. Local residents have a number of concerns about this proposal:

  • The field will be surrounded by 8 x 6-storey high light towers, operating until 10pm every weeknight and until 9pm on both weekend nights
  • No extra car parking is to be provided, with an anticipated 500 users every weekend (plus more on week nights) – car parking is already a problem when the College gym and theatre are used after hours, and this will make it much worse
  • Noise from referees’ whistles, game sirens, players, supporters etc. will occur every day, all year round
  • The field will be enclosed by a 3.5-metre high fence, including for the entire length of Shelley Street, accessed via electronic security gates controlled by the MCC (as the MCC requires ‘exclusive access’)
  • The wider community will not be able to use the field unless they are a member of the MCC Hockey Club (or another community club)
  • The secure fenced field is 6,000m2 of space currently used informally by the community, which will now convert to exclusive private use
  • The College will use the field during the school day and the MCC will control it from 4:30pm till 10:00pm each weeknight and all weekend
  • The cost of the hockey field (and lights) will be paid by the MCC ($3 million) and for this the College has free use of the field during school hours
  • The development involves more loss of campus vegetation (including six mature trees) adding to the removal of multiple trees in 2018
  • The large hard paved area of the field and landscape will potentially increase Elwood Canal flooding into the surrounding neighourhood
  • The College is a Department of Education site and no planning permit is required, therefore no formal assessment of impacts has been undertaken
  • There has been no community consultation on the proposal other than one community information night (to reveal final plans) held in August 2019
  • Construction is proposed to commence later in 2019, and tenders to construct the works have already closed (14 August)
  • The City of Port Philip has said that it cannot influence the outcome of the development because it is Department of Education and Training land

We support the College in its need to grow and develop, but this is a terribly inappropriate idea that will benefit the MCC much more than the College or the local community.

Please join us in demanding the MCC and College reconsider this development for one that is more appropriate for the site.