Principal's Blog - 30 November 2017

28 Nov 2017

Dear members of the Marcellin College family,

As you may be aware, last week the Victorian State Government made an announcement regarding the preferred option for the proposed North East Link Project. The corridor option chosen (Option A) poses many concerns for us at Marcellin. Preliminary designs show a proposed tunnel linking the Western Ring Road with the Eastern Freeway surfacing opposite Marcellin on the other side of Bulleen Road. The road then widens to provide an interchange connecting the North East Link with the Eastern Freeway. The North East Link project will also see a much needed upgrade to Bulleen Road.

Throughout the community consultation process Marcellin has met with the North East Link Authority, which we have found to be very accommodating and accessible. On Monday of this week I met with the North East Link Authority planning team to again voice the concerns of our community and to seek clarification as to the projects impact on our College. These concerns included issues such as access to our school during and after construction, safety, noise and air pollution, environmental impacts and aesthetics. Of most concern was the issue of compulsory acquisition of Marcellin College land which could potentially impact on the viability of our school’s main entrance as well as the integrity of our sporting fields and educational programs.

In response to our concerns the North East Link design team told us that they would not be able to provide a great deal of clarity about design until early to mid-2018. They did tell us that in all likelihood the tunnels would surface somewhere between the Veneto Club and Carey Baptist Grammar School, located on the other side of Bulleen Road. They also guaranteed us that there would be no loss of access to the College from Bulleen Road during or after construction. As far as compulsory acquisition of land is concerned the representatives of North East Link said that it would be highly unlikely that there would any compulsory acquisition of Marcellin land, however, this was not beyond the realm of possibility.  

On the surface this appears to be a better result for the Marcellin community than expected, as it seems that there is far less chance of a ten-metre-high viaduct being built above the existing line of Bulleen Road and it is less likely that compulsory acquisition of Marcellin land will occur. However, as we know the devil is in the detail. As a result, I will be watching this space vigilantly during this time.

To this end I will continue to seek support from those in positions of influence. I am currently arranging a meeting with Michael O’Brien MP and Shadow Treasurer and Old Collegian of Marcellin as well as local member and State Opposition Leader Matthew Guy MP. I will also continue to engage with North East Link Authority regularly.

I encourage all members of our community to seek out clarity, to rally together and support the future sustainability of our College by contacting your local member and North East Link to seek clarity and transparency and to highlight the needs of our College.

Below is an image of the proposed Bulleen Road interchange. The red outline roughly indicates the boundaries of Marcellin College. The authority representative went to some lengths to stress that this image is purely conceptual and may not reflect the result.

Vale Brian Tankey

It is with great sadness that I inform the Marcellin College community of the death of Brian Tankey aged 83.

Brian was a significant and valued member of the Marcellin community. Along with his wife Margaret they produced four fine men all of who attended Marcellin College. More than this, they gave generously to our school over many years modelling a spirit of Christian service whose legacy survives to this day.

Brian was heavily involved in the early development of our College initially using his brilliant handyman skills in organising working bees at Camberwell then he set up a Grounds and Maintenance Committee at Bulleen. Much of the work on the grounds in the 70’s and 80’s was completed by Brian’s army of volunteers. He also was havily involved in a managing many building projects at Marcellin.

Among his many initiatives Brian ran weekly Friday bingo fundraiser nights as the caller, roping in his youngest son Phil (Phil Tankey, Marcellin College Business Manager) to put the numbers on the Board as they were called. He also organised an annual Art Show to raise funds putting in numerous hours to its set up.

His strong management skills were brought to the fore becoming President of the Parents and Friends Association at Marcellin from 1981 to 1982 and with the Principal Br Stephen they set up the Marcellin College Advisory Council where Brian wrote the first Constitution and Chaired the Committee.

Our thoughts and prayers are with Margaret and the Tankey family in their time of grief.

Mark Murphy