Seeing double over street name

Not one, but two: There are two Ashley Avenues in Morwell.

Michelle Slater

Latrobe City Council has found itself in an “embarrassing” position being forced to re-name a Morwell street so as not to double-up on two roads with the same name.
Latrobe City is proposing to re-name Ashley Avenue – which runs off Alliss Street – to Nathan Avenue, so as not to confuse it with another nearby newer road off Maryvale Road.
The duplicated moniker is not allowed within 15 kilometres in regional urban areas under place naming rules, as it may confuse emergency services, mail or utility deliveries.
The original Ashley Avenue was created in 1974 and named in memory of Ashley Nathan Bond, so the new signage would adopt his middle name.
The new Ashley Avenue was named in 2005 as part of the Heritage Boulevard Estate.
But Latrobe City found it would be more practical to re-name the original Ashley Avenue as only three properties would be affected, rather than 35 homes in the newer Ashley Avenue.
Cr Graeme Middlemiss pointed out the flaws in street naming policies at Latrobe City’s October meeting.
“I find this proposal embarrassing. This is a most unfortunate situation where a lack of planning rules around our naming of streets has led to a great deal of embarrassment,” Cr Middlemiss said.
“There are a lot of houses on that road and the people in those houses won’t want to change their driver’s licences, or their bills, credit cards. They won’t want to change their addresses on that.”
Latrobe City will now go out for community consultation over the proposed name change, after it received objections from property owners on the Ashley avenues.
Ashley Bond’s family was advised of the proposed name change, and stated while disappointed, they understood the reason, and asked for the existing street sign once it was replaced.
“We need to sit down with the person who had the original naming rights. There’s a lot of family sensitivity around this, and we can see if we can work our way through,” Cr Middlemiss said.
“There will be some considerable disappointment from the family who originally named this road … I think council is obliged to work with them to calm the concerns.”