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Saving Verdon Street

By Integra - 20 September 2005 37

Help needed in saving Verdon Street!

As per all of the inner suburbs of Canberra, we are being invaded by the developer/urban infill virus. If you have ever been in our street you will know that it is a beautiful tree lined street with many traditional red brick houses, grassy front lawns and beautiful street scape. To add to this we are a close knit group with a majority of the residents being families who all get along. This truely is a beautiful piece of Canberra, we have share christmas bbqs, fireworks nights, games of street cricket and soccer etc…

Due to all the recent developments in the area our little street has become a parking lot. A majority of the traffic is from the people who work in the nearby offices on Northbourne too cheap to pay for parking right outside their building (you are damaging the environment by driving learn to pay for parking like the rest of us). This has lead to our garbage not being collected on 3 occasions over the past few months because the garbo’s can’t fit the trucks into the street or when they do squeeze in they can’t get to the bins due to some ‘bright spark’ parking right in front of them.

Whilst this is bad enough we are now being invaded by a proposed development at the end of our street, who has kindly offered Verdon Street as vistor parking in its planning. On top of the extra noise, traffic and the impact the surrounding houses the proposed units are to be a complete eyesore.

We held a street meeting with the proposed developer last night to discuss the impact. He just said that he didn’t have to listen to any of our concerns as he was happy face us in the AAT. Where I am sure he will bring a lawyer and some paid off experts. We are seeking assistance from other ACT residents who have appealed developments in their area. We are have until next week to lodge our objections and we would love to get some assistance in if not stopping the development at least having our concerns regarding safety, parking, traffic, visual and financial impact on the other houses.

Thanks in advance..

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37 Responses to
Saving Verdon Street
Vic Bitterman 8:41 pm 20 Sep 05

Damn Nimbys. Whingers the lot of them.

aussielyn 7:01 pm 20 Sep 05

The developers lobby controls planning in the ACT by it’s influence over the major political parties and thus the planning authority. The Parking Guidelines are a joke, a cost to be avoided as it affects the bottom line. Future changes in the pipeline will change the law so you cannot object and delay development. LAPACs were a hinderence to development so they were abolished.
Get committed people organised and learn the rules so you can save your street and community.

simto 5:33 pm 20 Sep 05

Hm, just had a look at my street directory, and, what do you know, I’m one of those people parking in Verdon street (or the street just back from it) on a fairly regular basis.

There IS no pay parking in the immediate area. And, like it or lump it, parking in your street is free (except on Fridays, when there are restrictions clearly marked).

The building I work in does have parking provided – however, this carpark fills up fairly rapidly (last week, it was full by a quarter to eight AM). There isn’t any pay parking particularly close to our building – yes, I suppose I could go and park over in Dickson or Civic, but that seems kinda counter-productive to the idea of parking somewhere near where I work. So, oddly enough, people aren’t parking in front of your house because it’s too cheap. They’re parking becuase, get this, it’s legal. If it isn’t legal, you can get a car towed.

People who suggest random tyre slashing – how’s about I come around to your car next time it’s legally parked and slash your tyres?

seepi 5:14 pm 20 Sep 05

This one is for northside residents concerned about the Dragway proposal for behind Mt MAjura. You would probably meet a few usefull people. downer Community Association seemed to have the most success against S Corbell in the past. Newspaper coverage is always good – why not ring the Crhonicle one day for a photo opp when the parking is really bad? Even better if you can geta disabled person who can’t get in their driveway etc.

bonfire 4:52 pm 20 Sep 05

Che’s suggestion is a good one. It would make an excellent media stunt. Make sure you issue press releases to all the media outlets and and have some kiddies around looking forlorn.

che 4:00 pm 20 Sep 05

Hire security and block off the street and only allow residents in

Integra 3:56 pm 20 Sep 05

Bonfire – it is a residential but according to the developer they do not need to provide vistor parking and only need to provide on space per unit (regardless of one or two bedroom).

ssanta 3:50 pm 20 Sep 05

nails in the car tyres of the folk who know they should not park there. easy as. or drop a steamer on each bonnet. not as safe as legal action, but alot more satisfying

Chris S 3:46 pm 20 Sep 05

Dear Integra,

To a large extent, you are on your own. There is a Community Council for North Canberra (, and it may be worth your while contacting the Downer Community Association ( as they have dealt with DAs in A10 areas in North Canberra in the past.

Forget about ACTPLA being any sort of assistance – they are firmly in the developer’s court. Likewise with Corbell – not only is he pro-development and anti-resident, he has firmly closed his mind (and heart) to the needs and wishes of ordinary Canberrans. My view is that Corbell’s sole achievement as Planning Minister is that he has managed to make Brendan Smyth look like a planning genius.

It is worth contacting Deb Foskey’s office, as the Greens are expressing concern over the random destruction of community values in A10 areas; however, with a majority government, there is not much they can do. Vicki Dunne used to, and Zed Seselja sort of does, criticise Corbell over the so-called “Garden City variation” which allows this sort of development in core areas. However, the Libs were no better when they were in government.

You may want to consider establishing your own neighbourhood group – a great example of a single-issue pressure group is the Karralika Action Group (see They had great success in shutting down a proposed “refurbishment” of Karralika which was really a major development in disguise and gave Corbell quite a bloody nose. KAG’s longer-term success is yet to be seen.

Best of luck!

bonfire 3:42 pm 20 Sep 05

Is the development residential or commercial ? If its residential i think you will find they have to provide parking.

che 3:40 pm 20 Sep 05

other avenues you might want to try are:
-The Environmental Defenders Office, as they may take on this cause at no/low cost to you or others
-The ACT Law Society also have a scheme called the Pro Bono Clearing House which means that if you meet some basic requirements they will put you in touch with a lawyer/firm who will provide you with some lawyerly help (just be aware that Pro Bono does not mean free, it means they won’t charge you for their time, there may be admin fees if they have to submit any paperwork etc) but will usually meet with you free for the first time to listen to what you have to say
-Could always go for paid legal advice

I’m sure there are some other paths to follow tho

Integra 3:34 pm 20 Sep 05

Samuel – it is in O’Connor near the crossing to get to St Joseph’s.

Samuel Gordon-Stewar 3:31 pm 20 Sep 05

I could look it up in a map, but I’m too lazy, where is Verdon Street?

Thumper 3:23 pm 20 Sep 05


Okay, long shot but I suggest you start writing numerous letters to all ACT MLAs plus senators.

Smackbang 3:16 pm 20 Sep 05

Start slashing some tyres. That might solve your carparking woes.

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