The abandoned retirement village in Patterson Lakes, located 50km southeast of the Melbourne CBD, is in the news again.
This time the village appeared in an article in the Herald Sun, where it was dubbed “a cesspool for crime” in a rundown of some of the state’s squatter hotspots.
Kingston Council planning and development general manager Jonathan Guttman told the paper the council had been taking a proactive approach to ensuring the site is safe.
“Unfortunately, vandals and trespassers continue to force their way onto this privately owned site,” Mr Guttman said.
“Council has continued to monitor the site and where required has undertaken works to limit access to the buildings, at some cost to council. We have also alerted local police, who have attended the site on a number of occasions.
“Council has very limited powers to get involved with squatters or hoarding cases on private property unless the site is able to be deemed unsightly, the situation results in vermin, fire safety issues or when it is preventing access for occupants to evacuate in an event of an emergency.”
As we reported here, Berkeley Living was a major focus of coverage by Fairfax Media journalist Adele Ferguson, together with A Current Affair, after the village – which was owned by 13 investors who individually owned the 30 serviced apartments – collapsed.