There are many streets in Ocean Grove without footpaths and other areas with gaps. Our Principal Pedestrian Network project has identified a network of footpaths which would allow users to access key destinations without leaving the network of paths.
A continuous network of footpaths has many benefits including
- promotes a healthy lifestyle
- improved safety
- improved access to key destinations, and
- reduction in car dependence.
The new footpaths would allow Ocean Grove to become a more walkable community and enable residents to enjoy the social, economic and environmental benefits of walking.
In December 2019, we started a four-month engagement program to gauge community interest in completing the footpath network in Ocean Grove. We also wanted to understand how large the network should be and what contribution the community would make.
We asked for feedback on two footpath options and four funding options (see table below).
During the engagement period we
- sent 5,644 letters regarding the engagement process
- received 1,035 valid surveys, a response rate of 18.3% (a survey was considered valid if it was completed and not a duplicate)
- met with 454 landowners over 12 engagement sessions
- received over 600 surveys with additional feedback.
The outcomes of this engagement will be presented to Council in March 2021 to determine if the project goes ahead.
PROPOSED FUNDING OPTIONS
If Council determines the project proceeds it would be funded by a Special Rate Charge where property owners and council both contribute to the cost.
In traditional Special Rate Charge projects only the property facing the footpath would contribute to the cost. Previous engagement with the community highlighted an interest in finding a more equitable solution than the traditional method.The options presented to the community are outlined in the table below.
(Estimated network cost)
Only properties directly facing the footpath contribute
615 properties contributing
1,199 properties contributing
Both sides of street contribute
1,205 properties contributing
2,544 properties contributing
Contribution varies based on property distance from the new footpath
3,372 properties contributing
6,291 properties contributing
|4. Equal share|
All properties within the new network contribute
3,373 properties contributing
6,293 properties contributing
Results from the survey indicate that 57.1% of those who responded (591 surveys) were in favour of connecting the footpath network. Of those who supported the footpath network 66.3% preferred to see the 22.8 km footpath network delivered.
Survey results also indicate a preference for the 'Equal Share' funding model over all other funding options.
The graph below shows the survey results for each footpath network and funding option.
We are currently refining our proposed network maps to incorporate suggestions made by the community. The report will be presented to Council in March 2021 where a decision will be made regarding the project.