Plans to extend the bluestone paving along Koroit Street in Warrnambool CBD appear to be on the backburner with any move to upgrade the streetscape now subject to more consultation.
Making the footpaths along Koroit Street safer for pedestrians by upgrading the paths had been flagged by the council as part of the CBD renewal, but was put on hold after the Liebig Street renewal costs blew out by $3 million to $18 million in 2018.
In 2019, former mayor Tony Herbert said the council had hoped to start extending the bluestone paths along Koroit Street within a few years but more than two years later there has been no talk of the works.
The council said this week that an adjusted works program had been completed for Koroit Street and any additional work would require further consultation with traders and the community.
Revenue from parking fees, Mr Herbert said at the time, was directed into a fund to be spent on beautifying the CBD.
Parking revenue has taken a hit in recent years with lockdowns impacting the amount the council brings in from its parking meters, although it still brought in a better-than-expected $192,000 last financial year.
Revenue from parking fines is expected to soar to $681,000 this year.
Former councillor Peter Hulin has called on councillors to walk the CBD to see first-hand the condition of the paths, labelling sections of Kepler Street as "horrendous".
He said the plane trees had been causing major damage to buildings, and the council needed to start replacing them.
"Have a look at the footpaths because of the inappropriate trees ripping up all our infrastructure. It's a massive problem," he said.
"Before they do any footpaths, they need to periodically start replacing the trees and put in the same sort of thing they put in Liebig Street - that's an appropriate non-aggressive street tree."
Mr Hulin also said the parking meters were installed to fund the upgrade of the footpaths, so funding should be available.
Works that have been carried out to "enhance" Koroit Street included installation of new street furniture, upgrading the pedestrian crossing, catenary lighting, and upgrading the intersections with Liebig and Kepler streets - including some bluestone paving and garden beds. Koroit Street was also resurfaced about six years ago, the council said.
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