Council to pay the extra cost of street scheme

David Braithwaite

WELLINGTON Shire Council will cover the 36 per cent increase in the cost of reconstructing a section of a Sale street.

Council was recovering the cost of works along Marley St, between Macarthur and Raglan Sts, through a special charge scheme.

The project was estimated to cost $885,000, but the final figure rose to $1.2 million.

Design changes and modifications to the plans were made to meet infrastructure, water and high-pressure gas main guidelines.

Gippsland Water required a water main to be lowered at a cost of $144,684 and with ancillary and tendering costs of $8570, this produced an overall final scheme cost of $1.2 million.

Property owners in the area will contribute $265,500 in total, based on the original cost estimate.

Covering the increase in cost, council will pay the remaining $942,132, coming from the federal government’s Roads to Recovery program.

Councillor Scott Rossetti acknowledged the challenges to residents caused by the delays in works.

“The original scheme was $885,000, the final costing was about $355,000 more than that, but it did include about $100,000 of existing kerb and footpath replacement which didn’t form part of the original scheme; it also included $100,000 of driveway construction which had been individually invoiced to property owners,” he said.

“The big difference was the lowering of the water main.

“Council could have gone beyond our estimates when we charged the apportionment to those residents of Marley St, but what we’ve done is chosen to use the original estimated cost we’ve provided to the community of $885,000, because we think that’s fair and reasonable not to throw that extra cost back at them.”

Meanwhile, council intends to declare a special charge scheme for Boggy Creek Rd, Longford.

Coming off Rosedale-Longford Rd near Sale Golf Club, Boggy Creek Rd is unsealed, with irregular table drains.

The proposed Boggy Creek Rd street construction scheme would provide for the construction and sealing of the road.

Barrier kerbing is proposed at bends, and improved drainage and stormwater management will form part of the proposed works.

The construction and sealing of Boggy Creek Rd would reduce council’s need for maintenance, while providing a safer road.

A formal investigation of a special charge scheme, which included a site survey and preparation of concept designs and a cost estimation, began following ongoing property owners’ concerns in relation to maintenance grading.

The scheme will cost an estimated $316,400, with the owners of 33 properties in the area paying a total of $115,308.

Council’s contribution of $201,092 will come from Roads to Recovery funding.

Property owners will contribute to the project as they will derive a special benefit through a reduction in dust, enhancing the area’s amenity, and improved surface, access and egress from properties, and drainage.

Following a public meeting in June, a follow-up letter was sent to each property owner, which included an estimated apportionment cost and concept plan, plus a survey to assess support for the scheme.

Eighty-five per cent of the property owners replied, with 79 per cent of those in favour of the proposed scheme.