Boroondara Residents Action Group

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The Boroondara Residents Action Group (BRAG) is an organisation of residents and business owners in Boroondara formed to oppose development within the City. It claims over 500 members on its website and has featured prominently in several high-profile planning disputes.[1]

History

BRAG is the current iteration of a long history of community groups formed in response to contentious planning issues in Boroondara. The lineage of organisations may be traced back to Camberwell-Hawthorn Planning Watch, formed in 1988 as an amalgamation of several smaller groups to oppose the Podgor Development in central Camberwell.[2]

Camberwell Railway Station redevelopment

In 2002, the Camberwell Station Action Group was formed to oppose the redevelopment of Camberwell Railway Station. Some of the leaders and members of the Camberwell-Hawthorn Planning Watch became involved in the new organisation and its campaign. The Camberwell Station Action Group formally changed its name to the Boroondara Residents Action Group in 2004 and began to expand its activities to other developments around Camberwell and wider Boroondara.[3] BRAG organised several protests at Camberwell Council meetings and through letterbox campaigns.

This first round of protests culminated in a street march down Burke Road, Camberwell, on 10 March 2004. BRAG had national celebrities Geoffrey Rush and Barry Humphries as members of the organisation and unofficial spokespeople for the cause. Both lived in close proximity to the station and became heavily involved in the campaign.[4][5] Reports conflicted on numbers in attendance, ranging from 1,000 to 2,000.[6]

After several more years of opposition, the Victorian Government formally approved revised plans. However, in October 2012, the redevelopment plans were shelved and BRAG claimed victory in its campaign.[7]

Leadership

Notable planning issues

References

  1. Boroondara Residents Action Group. BRAG - Who are we?. 18 December 2015. https://web.archive.org/web/20170304183820/http://www.marvellousmelbourne.org.au/moodle/mod/forum/discuss.php?d=23, accessed: 13 October 2017 Archived from the original
  2. Flannigan, Nigel. An Alternative Approach to the Podgor Development for Camberwell Junction Shopping Streets. 1988.
  3. Boroondara Residents Action Group. BRAG: Camberwell Station - The Story so Far. 8 July 2013. https://web.archive.org/web/20170304183850/http://www.marvellousmelbourne.org.au/moodle/mod/forum/discuss.php?d=10, accessed: 13 October 2017 Archived from the original
  4. Button, James. Battle Stations. The Age: 28 April 2004. https://web.archive.org/web/20170425044651/http://www.theage.com.au/articles/2004/04/27/1082831566692.html, accessed: 13 October 2017 Archived from the original
  5. 'KEN'. Actor Geoffrey Rush, addresses a protest at Camberwell station. Getty Images: 10 March 2004. http://www.gettyimages.com.au/detail/news-photo/actor-geoffrey-rush-addresses-a-protest-at-camberwell-news-photo/539979457#actor-geoffrey-rush-addresses-a-protest-at-camberwell-station-where-picture-id539979457, accessed: 13 October 2017
  6. Dovey, Woodcock & Wood. What is Urban Character? The Case of Camberwell. Australian Planner: 2009, 46 (3). https://www.researchgate.net/publication/275368820_Understanding_neighbourhood_character_The_case_of_Camberwell, accessed: 13 October 2017
  7. Carey, Adam. Camberwell station development shelved. The Age: 3 October 2012. http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/camberwell-station-development-shelved-20121003-26yls.html, accessed: 13 October 2017

See also