“Why would anyone come to Walla when the main street looks like this?”
Keith Churches grimaced as he spoke to The Border Mail, standing next to a series of big potholes neighbouring one of two cafes in the town.
The resident of 82 years notified Greater Hume Council almost a month ago and wants action taken sooner rather than later.
“I got on to our local councillor, Karen Schoff, about three weeks ago, at least – she took a photo of it and sent it up to the office,” Mr Churches said.
“They’ve said it’s on the books to be done in November, but you can imagine what a hell of a mess it will be by then.”
A footpath runs through the section of unsealed road.
Parts of the bitumen street are eroded at the edges.
Mr Churches said there was uneven ground where the footpath met the verandah of the adjacent building, which had been spray-painted to identify the safety hazard.
“I don’t know how many times that’s been reported over the last two years and all they (council) do is change the bits of paint on it,” he said.
“If it was sealed out to the edge, all of this wouldn’t happen.
“I’m very passionate about Walla, I’ve lived here all my life and don’t want to see it go down like this.”
Council engineering director Greg Blackie said because the complaint about the potholes was not in the system, it was not attended to earlier.
“We believe we haven’t been notified and I will follow up to see where the contact has been made because it seems something has gone astray,” he said.
“Three weeks would not be acceptable and I understand why Keith would be upset.”
Mr Blackie said council staff would now be cleaning the site up on Friday, but a permanent fix was coming later this year through a $250,000 street upgrade project.
“All the kerbs and footpaths will be renewed and that area will be sealed from the road to where the kerb is – the issue of potholes won’t be there anymore,” he said.
“It was always planned, we try and do them in the summer period with issues with wet weather. We’re not treating it lightly in any way.”
Mr Blackie said works would include levelling the footpath.
“When we looked at the state of the kerb, that’s when we put together the project,” he said.
“I understand from Keith’s view it’s dangerous but a lot of people are aware of it and we haven’t had complaints.
“If we started stringing up plastic barriers around it, the tenants of that building wouldn’t be too impressed.
“We’re happy to re-look at it … we’ll go out and assess it on a risk basis and see if we need to do anything else.”