INVESTIGATORY drilling for an east-west road link within Melbourne City Council bounds has rattled residents and councillors after a mix-up involving a drill site which is home to trees listed as significant by the National Trust of Australia.
The Melbourne City Council decision to allow investigatory drilling for an east-west road link at 13 locations was hotly contested last month, but a conditional permit was eventually granted.
Melbourne councillors now say they were not properly notified about drilling that occurred on the Cemetery Road and Swanston Street roundabout, with the council last week voting to write to the authority responsible.
Lord mayor Robert Doyle said he would seek a meeting with the Linking Melbourne Authority chief executive to explain the drilling's significance. "They have not made an auspicious start to what is very sensitive work in our muncipality," he said.
The Protectors of Public Lands Victoria, which helped the council develop a drilling management plan, staged a protest at the drill site last month. PPL secretary Julianne Bell said the roundabout was home to lemon-scented gums listed as significant trees by the National Trust.
Ms Bell said LMA had now provided her group with a list of drill sites and the PPL would closely monitor all future drilling. "We are greatly concerned about the future of our significant trees, our heritage streetscapes and the historic cemetery," she said.
LMA spokeswoman Erin Coldham said the investigative drilling at the roundabout had finished and the site had been restored.
She said the roundabout was on VicRoads-owned land and so not included on the list submitted to Melbourne council for approval.
Council officers and an arborist had inspected the roundabout before drilling began, she said.