RMS releases flimsy response to WestConnex Stage 3 submissions

NSW Roads and Maritime (RMS) has released a huge but vacuous document responding to the 13,000 submissions about Stage 3 of WestConnex, including from other Government departments and local councils.

“It is extremely alarming that so many serious concerns about this project have been not been responded to in an adequate manner, said Jenny Leong MP, Greens Member for Newtown.

“There were 13,000 community submissions against this plan including detailed objections from the EPA, NSW Health, the City of Sydney and the Inner West Council – reading through the hundreds of objections and the flimsy responses is shocking.

“The EPA’s overriding concern that it could not even assess key elements of the EIS because of the lack of detail was fobbed off by feeble assurances that construction companies would provide essential details down the track. 

“Despite NSW Health’s call for more sensitive testing in key areas on air quality, in-tunnel air quality, noise, vibration and prolonged impacts of construction and operation - this testing was not done at all in the area around the St Peters Interchange site. It seems they are simply avoiding showing the disastrous impact that residents will experience in this area.

“Key concerns around air quality and the cumulative impacts of prolonged construction on residents in all construction areas were just not adequately addressed.

“It is disturbing that even government bodies such as NSW Health, the EPA and local councils are being effectively ignored by RMS in their Responses to the submissions. This demonstrates just how vast the concerns are and how little public benefit there is in WestConnex.

“The Greens are calling for an immediate halt to all construction and planning approvals while an independent parliamentary inquiry into WestConnex can be conducted,” Ms Leong said.


Key concerns

  • The EPA’s concern that residents could face many years of unacceptable night and weekend work in St Peters and Haberfield / Ashfield was justified primarily by the SMC by noting the Liberal Government’s infrastructure schedule for Sydney which we know has already caused unacceptable impacts on many individual and communities.
  • Those worst affected residents will be eligible for priority noise mitigation but not until they sign an ‘at receiver treatment proposal’ which is in fact a forced waiver of any future legal action against the SMC or the RMS.
  • Residents in the Inner West will be subject to up to 7 years of construction impacts and ongoing disruption because WestConnex has no intention of seriously minimizing these impacts.
  • RMS now advises that local councils should rezone to limit high rise construction to 10 metres or less near WestConnex stacks because of the dangerous health impacts of fine particle pollution. But WestConnex stacks are already proposed to be located near existing high-rise or below homes and apartment blocks – how is the health of residents in these places to be protected?
  • Taking more parkland from the King George Park in Rozelle to build a biorentention facility and creating a new construction facility at White Bay is more planning on the run - as is the location of the 4 unfiltered stacks in Rozelle.

    Source material

Roads and Maritime’s responses to the M4-M5 submissions can be found at: https://majorprojects.accelo.com/public/a23359f44feb00e447c11709a789e92c/05.%20M4-M5%20RtS_Part%20B%20Key%20stakeholders%20_B1-B4_.pdf

Response to Inner West Council and City of Sydney Council: https://majorprojects.accelo.com/public/ea2ffad7b54ddb54fa0ac10b371302a6/07.%20M4-M5%20RtS_Part%20B%20Key%20stakeholders%20_B6-B13_.pdf

Responses to agencies including EPA and NSW Health: https://majorprojects.accelo.com/public/a23359f44feb00e447c11709a789e92c/05.%20M4-M5%20RtS_Part%20B%20Key%20stakeholders%20_B1-B4_.pdf

Response to community submissions: https://majorprojects.accelo.com/public/8a19deb684e7411049b6659d93118b54/08.%20M4-M5%20RtS_Part%20C%20Community%20_C1-C12_.pdf

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