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Advocating to other levels of government in the interests of our community is an essential role of local government.

Through our advocacy we are the voice of our community, working to deliver infrastructure, services and policy in partnership with other levels of government to meet current and long-term needs.

Our advocacy focuses on initiatives under three key themes. These are Our Planet, Our People and Our Place. They support the aspirations of the Bayside 2050 Community Vision and actions in the Council Plan 2021-2025.

We are also working with other local governments across our region to advocate on issues that impact our communities. Find out more about our joint advocacy 


Our Planet

Climate change represents significant challenges for Bayside, now and into the future. Our advocacy includes initiatives targeting climate mitigation as well as adaption.

Key initiative - Yalukit Willam Nature Reserve & Elwood  Diversion Drain Augmentation Project

The transformation of Yalukit Willam (formerly Elsternwick Park) Nature Reserve represents a once in a lifetime opportunity to create an extraordinary natural space in an urban setting.

It also has significant potential benefits for improving water quality in Port Phillip Bay via nitrogen capture as well as flood management, biodiversity and urban cooling benefits. 

Council has adopted a $24 million masterplan to realise the vision for the reserve as an oasis for both people and nature and has allocated $9 million towards the initiative.

The Australian Government has committed $6 million to the implementation of the masterplan and pledged a further $11.7 million towards the reserve and Elster Creek under the Urban Rivers and Catchments program.

Bayside is seeking a tripartite approach to this regionally significant project.

Council is also working with Melbourne Water on the Elwood Diversion Drain Augmentation Project. This increasing the capacity of the drain can help to reduce the impacts of flooding for the local community and contribute to climate resilience and liveability in the Elwood and Brighton area.

Request of Government

We are seeking funding from the Victorian Government for the continued transformation of the reserve and expansion of the wetlands.

1,197ML of stormwater flows through the reserve annually from the 3,200ha Elster Creek Catchment. The wetlands will lead to improved water quality in Port Phillip Bay by removing nitrogen and other pollutants from stormwater flowing through the reserve. 

The wetlands will also contribute to flood management, reducing flood risk for nearly 2,000 local property owners.

Increased biodiversity in the reserve through extensive planting, including aquatic plants in the wetlands, will create habitat for wildlife and achieve urban cooling benefits.

The reserve will also provide facilities for significant passive recreation and community education activities. These include a focus on environmental, First Nations cultural and sustainability education.

We are also calling for the Victorian Government to expedite funding for the Elwood Main Drain Augmentation project which will complement the reserve wetlands and reduce flood risk in North Brighton and Elwood.

Find out more about Yalukit Willam Nature Reserve

Key initiative - Recycled Water Pipeline

The Dingley Recycled Water Scheme’s new 42km pipeline will deliver recycled water to 46 sites across the Kingston, Monash, and Bayside communities.

The project will support local parks, world-class golf courses, sports ovals, and nurseries, while preserving our drinking water supply. This includes supporting international golf tourism at Sandringham’s renown courses, generating 240 jobs. It will also provide a climate resilient source of water for local businesses.

The Victorian Government has allocated $24.8 million from the 2022/23 Budget for the construction of the pipeline. The project will unlock 1,800 ML of recycled water each year.

Key initiative - Minister for the Bay

As a coastal municipality, Bayside is significantly exposed to the impacts of climate change. Brighton in particular is rated in the top ten suburbs nationally for property value at coastal risk due to erosion and storm surge caused by climate change.

Currently more than nine government departments/agencies, ten Councils and multiple private/community bodies have responsibility for foreshore management, with others responsible for marine transport, ports, and other services. Conflicting policy positions and application leads to time, cost, and lost opportunities to manage our coastline effectively and proactively.

Request of Government

We are calling for a coordinated government body to manage and invest along the Port Phillip coastline. 

A dedicated Minister for the Bay would create a streamlined focus on policy priorities including establishing a leadership position on climate change adaption and coastal erosion, cutting red tape, protecting jobs and the heritage values of coastal assets.

A single line of governance would help the 4.5 million people living in bay communities by providing greater certainty on climate change adaption measures through a coordinated government approach.

This would provide focused policy direction and funding to develop integrated planning and action to deal with the challenges of ageing infrastructure and population growth.

A Minister for the Bay would also support the delivery of the Victorian Government’s Marine and Coastal Strategy – building resilience in our marine and coastal areas.

Other advocacy initiatives

We are also seeking action on:


Our Place

We are advocating to the Victorian Government for improved public transport services in Bayside, particularly in the southern part of our municipality.

Key initiative - Level crossing removals

Council welcomes the Victorian Government's announcement on the upcoming removal of the Highett Road and Wickham Road railway level crossings.

The Victorian Government’s level crossing removal project is removing 85 dangerous and congested level crossings across Melbourne by 2025. To date 65 crossings have been removed including 10 along the Frankston line.

The Highett crossings delay commuter journeys on the railway line, extending travel time including for express trains. This makes sustainable travel a less attractive choice now and into the future despite the construction of the Suburban Rail Loop Cheltenham station within 1kms of both crossings.

The crossings also contribute to significant traffic congestion in the Highett activity area and represent an unacceptable level of safety risk to road users and pedestrians.

Council is calling for robust community consultation to ensure the best possible outcome from the removal of the crossings for local residents, traders and the broader community.

Key initiative - Better bus services

Bus services in Bayside are indirect, infrequent and not well connected with rail services, particularly in Black Rock and Beaumaris.

The lack of regular and convenient services increases reliance on private car transport. Transport is Bayside’s second equal largest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions (20%).

Request of Government

We are seeking immediate action to finalise a bus route review by the Department of Transport on routes 600, 922, 923.

These bus routes link Beaumaris and Black Rock shopping villages, Beaumaris Secondary College and other key destinations along the route with public transport hubs such as Sandringham and Cheltenham railway stations and Southland bus interchange.

The Victorian Government’s $45 million investment in the new Beaumaris Secondary College is attracting young families to the catchment area however public transport servicing the school is very poor.

Key initiative - Suburban Rail Loop

The Victorian Government’s Suburban Rail Loop is a city-shaping project that will transform Melbourne’s public transport system, connecting suburbs and creating opportunities in great places. 

The selection of Sir William Fry Reserve in Cheltenham as a station location represents an opportunity to improve sustainable, efficient, and connected public transport across and onward from Bayside. Initial works for Stage One are expected to commence in 2022 with commissioning of the railway expected by 2035.

Council is providing strong input to the Suburban Rail Loop Authority to advocate on behalf of the Bayside community to minimise impacts from the construction of the new station and maximise long term benefit from the new transport infrastructure.

Request of Government

We are seeking to maximise the benefit of the Suburban Rail Loop to Bayside through strong and active engagement with Council and the community.

This includes advocating for positive outcomes in the station precinct and adjacent areas where the Suburban Rail Loop Authority is the responsible authority.

We are also seeking strong integration between the Suburban Rail Loop and other sustainable transport modes to improve public transport services overall resulting in reduced reliance
on private vehicles.

Minimising any impacts of construction to local residents, community organisations and businesses is also a priority for Bayside.

Find out more about the Suburban Rail Loop.

Other advocacy initiatives

We are also seeking action on:

  • enhanced safety on pedestrian railway crossings across Bayside including at New/Dendy/Burrows Streets in Brighton. The Victorian Government has announced a $2.8million upgrade to the crossing which will follow Council's upgrade to the traffic islands and roundabout earlier in 2022 to improve pedestrian and vehicle safety.


Our People

We are seeking policy reform and funding to ensure that all Bayside residents are celebrated, included and feel they can actively participate in community life.

Key initiative - Gender neutral sports pavilions

Participation in organised sport and recreation has health, wellbeing and social connection benefits for individuals and the community as a whole.

Inclusive, gender neutral facilities increase participation by women and girls as well as accommodate all ability athletes. Welcoming, inclusive recreation infrastructure such as pavilions also create places for the community to meet, fostering socials connections and a sense of belonging.

Request of Government

Recreation infrastructure across Bayside was typically constructed in the 1950s and 60s and many facilities are not inclusive of women, girls or all ability athletes. We have a plan to upgrade all Bayside’s 27 sporting pavilions and have completed 15 developments to date.

We are seeking funding to speed up select upgrades to encourage greater participation by girls and women in organised sport including AFL, soccer, athletics and cricket. The upgrades are increasingly important to provide welcoming facilities to address recent drops in participation in organised sport due to COVID-19 impacts.

We are seeking up to $22.2 million funding across upgrades of the following sports pavilions:

  • Brighton Beach Oval Pavilion
  • Boss James Pavilion
  • Dendy Park Athletics Pavilion
  • Moorabbin West Oval Pavilion
  • Peterson Reserve Pavilion
  • Sillitoe Pavilion.

These pavilions support a range of sport and activity from community grassroots up to sub elite sport.

Key initiative - Warm Water Pool

There are many proven benefits of regular warm water exercise for all ages, but particularly for older people and people with a disability. 

Bayside’s population is aging, with an increasing percentage of older residents and those with a disability, obesity, or health conditions. High participation in sport and rehabilitation after injury; as well as strong demand for younger children’s swimming lessons supports the need for a warm water pool. Our community does not currently have access to a warm water pool locally.

We recently completed community feedback on the proposal to build a warm water pool at Brighton Golf Course. Find out more

Request of Government

We are seeking $5 million from the Victorian Government towards an environmentally sustainable warm water pool to complement Council’s $12 million investment.

A new local warm water pool would improve access to gentle exercise facilities for older residents as well as a range of other users. The pool would supply local rehabilitation and allied health services, aiding residents to regain and maintain mobility, confidence and health after injury.

In keeping with Council’s climate emergency action plan, the warm water pool would have a carbon neutral footprint. The facility includes many efficient energy management features with renewable energy, water recycling and structural design details to ensure the integrity of the building’s thermal envelope.

Key initiative - funding for BayCISS

Bayside Community Information and Support Service (BayCISS) is a registered not-for-profit charity providing an extensive range of services for community members living in the Bayside and Kingston local government areas.

BayCISS aims to help community members during times of need including emergency and crisis. The charity provides information, advice, referral and practical supports in conjunction with medium to long-term supports depending on need.

Bayside City Council provides BayCISS with an annual major grant to support its operations and has supplied additional funding in 2022 to assist the charity to meet escalating demand for services due to COVID-19.

BayCISS operates out of a Council owned building at 12 Katoomba Street, Hampton East. The building is reaching the end of its useable life. Due to site constraints and the extent of work needed, a new build is necessary to meet BayCISS’ requirements to enable the continuation of their essential work.

Request of Government

We are seeking $5 million for new premises for BayCISS to support the essential services it provides to the community.

BayCISS’ existing premises are no longer fit for purpose and the charity is seeking suitable accommodation premises to create more space to meet increasing community need

Council has several maintenance projects scheduled for the site however the long term Financial Plan does not include funding for a

Other advocacy initiatives

We are also seeking action on:

  • greater affordable and social housing in our region, particularly for low income residents and key workers. Much of Bayside’s social housing stock is ageing and in many cases, no longer fit for purpose. Bayside welcomes the Victorian Government’s Big Housing Build program to upgrade and expand social housing including at New Street in Brighton and Hampton East and seek further improvements at other social housing sites across Bayside. Our Affordable Housing Strategy guides how we can assist the increase in supply of appropriate and accessible affordable housing in Bayside.
  • support to help our residents navigate upcoming changes to aged care assessments and the provision of in-home aged care services
  • support for residents experiencing homelessness through our participation in the Homelessness and Social Housing Group
Red Bluff Cliffs in Black Rock.