Friends of the Healesville Freeway Reserve


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Friends of the Healesville Freeway Reserve (Whitehorse)

23rd March ’14 - Action Day Report

What a day we had! We had been watching the weather with trepidation, initially the forecast was 70% chance of rain then it changed to 40%. Finally the day was overcast but clear and a collective sigh of relief was breathed!


Set up started early with an area for the 5 displays, the voting and the BBQ.

Setting up for the Action DaySetting up for the Action Day

The day started slowly, with people trickling in from 10am, Michael Sukkar, the Federal member for Deakin dropped in soon after and met the early birds.

Number grew during the morningAround 400 attended during the action dayAround 400 attended during the action day


The numbers continued to grow steadily and by the time we had the speeches it was full house!

With 260 votes collected on the day, we estimate the attendance at 400, as not everyone who attended stayed for the whole time and several people who attended had already voted at the Face to Face promotion of the event at the local shopping centres on the 15th, 16th & 22nd March’14 and so could not vote again.

Though there were 5 concepts, people had a choice between 3 options for land use – 100% Open space, 20% Housing or 60+% Housing.


  • Open Space Options - The ALP have promised if they win government, to keep all the reserve as open space, handing it over to Parks Victoria, with $650,000 promised for a biolink/shared path. The Community also put up a concept for 100% open space.
  • 20% Housing Options – Again there were two concepts – The Community concept for 20% housing and the Whitehorse Council’s vision with 19% housing
  • 60+% Housing – This number is an estimation as VicRoads have still not announced what the percentage of housing in their concept works out to. They have confirmed though that their concept would include the tree lined shared path, which was the concept on display.


The speakers for the day were - Neil Angus, member for the Lower House of Forest Hill representing the Coalition. The ALP was represented by Shaun Leane, Upper House member for Eastern Metropolitan, and Pauline Richards who has been preselected for the Lower House seat of Forest Hill. Greg Barber leader of the Greens was there with local candidate for the Upper House, Samantha Dunn. Morack ward Councillors Raylene Carr and Bill Bennett and Raeoni Turner from Nadrasca.

Other councillors from the City of Whitehorse who attended were Andrew Munroe and Andrew Davenport. At noon everyone gathered to hear the speakers who set out their views and then took questions from the Community.


Neil AngusNeil Angus Shaun LeaneShaun Leane Greg BarberGreg Barber Bill Bennet & Raylene CarrBill Bennet & Raylene Carr

A special thank you to the Vermont Lions who worked hard to keep everyone fed on the day!


All the voting slips have now been counted and the result of the view the community expressed is overwhelmingly in favour of retaining the HFR corridor as Open Space.


The No 1 issue people voted for as most important was – Open space at 85% while the VicRoads concept got the least votes at less than 1%.

  • Total Votes – 758
  • Action day votes – 260
  • Face to face – 498 (conducted on 15th, 16th & 22nd March at Vermont South Shopping Centre and Brentford Square Shopping Centre)

Break Up by Concept

Ranking – 1 Most liked ---------- 5 Least liked

1 2 3 4 5

Australian Labor Party – 100% Open Space







City of Whitehorse Vision – approx 20% Housing







Concept 4 Preservation - 100% Open Space







Low Impact Housing -20% Housing







Vic Roads Shared Path Concept – 60% housing







The Next Step

Now that there is a clear choice for the community between the Coalition and Labor view on this issue, the final say on the HFR should be taken to an election. We call on the Premier Dr. Napthine, Ministers for Roads and Planning, Terry Mulder and Matthew Guy to provide some assurance to the community that no final decisions will be made or contracts signed until after the election, when people are allowed to express their choice through the ballot box. To do any different would be a breach of faith with the community.

Thank you, to all the people who came out in numbers to have their say on what they want for their community.


Other Resources


pdfMedia release

pdfComments on Assessment cards

pdfComments on butcher's paper