By ALANA MITCHELSON
MORE than 400 residents have expressed their objections to a proposed service station on Racecourse Road, beside the Cardinia Waters Village entrance.
Plans show that, if successful, the development would feature a Liberty Oil petrol station, a convenience store, restaurant and 12 car parking spaces.
The site is currently a vacant block of land directly adjacent to the Cardinia Waters retirement village.
Cardinia Waters resident Valerie West said she was concerned that the petrol station’s proximity would attract undesirables to the retirement village.
“It’s upsetting everybody in the village. Residents are quite irate,” the 71-year-old said.
“It’s so close to our major entrance – getting out is hard at the best of times what with the trains and the traffic, so I think that will be a nightmare. I’m worried that if there was a major emergency, we wouldn’t be able to get out.
“We’re concerned about undesirable activity, and rubbish and safety. Everybody’s over 55 in the village and we might be vulnerable.
“It’ll also affect the milk bar business down the road. Half the village goes there for the paper and the milk every morning. And there’s already a 7/11 being built just up the road.”
Ms West said she presented the council with 404 signatures from Cardinia Waters residents against the planning proposal.
“But council told me that signatures alone were not enough, which was a real disappointment. Only petitions where residents had written their exact concerns down were counted as formal objections,” Ms West said.
“Some people are happy for it to go ahead but the majority don’t want it.”
Cardinia Shire development and compliance services manager Debbie Tyson said the council had recorded more than 60 objections and two letters of support for the proposed development.
She said resident submissions could be lodged until a decision was made on the application.
“Due to the number of objections, any decision made by the council will need to be done at a council meeting,” Ms Tyson said.
“The application has not yet been determined and is still under consideration. Council is currently waiting on internal and external referral responses before proceeding.
“The assessment process will consider the issues and concerns raised in the submissions lodged by residents.”
The applicant, Ornoc manager Michael Israel, said the development would benefit the whole community in the long-term.
“Pakenham is a growth area and we thought it would be a good idea to provide an essential service,” Mr Israel said.
“It will create eight to 12 jobs, possibly more.
“There are elderly in the area who will be able to walk to the shops which will be convenient.
“We have very strict safety requirements.”