Coles and Woodend residents head to VCAT

Residents who fought off plans for a service station development at Woodend will take their battle to the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal.

Food and petrol giant Coles Express last week confirmed it will appeal Macedon Ranges council’s decision to reject its application for a servo at 59 High Street.

In May, councillors went against officers’ advice, having heard objections relating to traffic, the proposed size of the development and its potential affect on town character.

A Coles spokeswoman said last week the company wanted to offer residents and passers-by more choice for fuel.

‘‘Coles Express has been working extensively with council, VicRoads and VicTrack to ensure we meet the needs of residents and the development is sympathetic to the local area,’’ she said.

‘‘Coles Express will also continue to work with VicRoads to ensure safe vehicle access to and from the site, and considerable road and footpath upgrades,’’ the spokeswoman said.

More than 50 people packed the gallery for May’s council meeting after a vigorous social media campaign encouraged people to email councillors. Residents including Woodend picture framer Zoltan Bexley have been fundraising for the expected appeal since early June.

Objectors will meet on Wednesday at Victoria Hotel from 7.30pm.