The level crossings at Edithvale and Bonbeach are set to be removed by lowering the rail line into a trench. Because of their proximity to the internationally significant Edithvale-Seaford Wetlands, these projects are subject to an Environment Effects Statement (EES) process.
This EES is a detailed study into the potential impacts of the Edithvale and Bonbeach level crossings projects.
It describes potential effects of the Edithvale and Bonbeach level crossing removal projects on the environment and recommends ways to avoid, minimise or manage these impacts.
The EES focuses on three key areas that could be impacted by the projects:
The EES found that trenches are feasible at both Edithvale and Bonbeach. The EES found any potential impacts from the projects on the environment are considered to be minor and will be monitored throughout construction and for several years after completion.
The EES found that the level crossing works would not impact the Edithvale-Seaford Wetlands. This is because groundwater changes resulting from the project are highly unlikely to occur closer than one kilometre from the Edithvale wetlands.
Part of the EES focused on how to manage potential impacts the projects may have on groundwater levels and the ecosystems that depend on it.
It found that any potential changes to groundwater levels at Edithvale can be effectively managed through our design technique.
At Bonbeach, changes to groundwater levels are relatively minor and unlikely to have a significant impact.
The level crossing removal projects are designed to minimise any potential effects on groundwater quality.
In Edithvale, our design technique means that the groundwater quality will not be impacted.
At Bonbeach, the EES found that the risk of impacts to groundwater quality was extremely low.
Public comment on the Environment Effects Statement (EES) for the Edithvale and Bonbeach level crossing projects closed on 2 May 2018 after six weeks on exhibition.
During this time, 248 public submissions on the EES and proposed design were received, and will help to shape the outcomes of the project.
The independent Inquiry, appointed to provide expert advice to the Minister for Planning, considered the Edithvale and Bonbeach Environmental Effects Statement and all public submissions received during seven days of public hearings in June 2018.
All information presented at the public hearings, including audio recordings of the hearings is available at Engage Victoria.
The Panel will consider all the information provided to them during the hearings and write their report for the Minister for Planning. This report will be presented to the Minister in August, and will inform the Minister’s assessment of the projects.
Both the panel’s report and the Minister’s assessment will be available on the Planning Panels Victoria website from late August/ early September 2018.
The EES process is be managed by the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning.
For any inquiries about the overall EES process, please contact the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning at email@example.com or call (03) 8392 5503.
If you have questions about the Panel report itself please contact Planning Panels Victoria: firstname.lastname@example.org or call (03) 8392 5121.
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