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Yarra City Council welcomes mandatory maximum height controls for Queens Parade
28 March 2017
Yarra City Council has welcomed the Minister for Planning’s decision to apply interim planning controls for the proposed development sites at 26–56 Queens Parade, North Fitzroy.
The decision comes after Council advocated for mandatory maximum height controls and setbacks be applied to the site, which was subject to a planning application originally proposing to develop the land into a 16 storey building with 476 dwellings but modified to propose a building of up to 12 storey.
Yarra Mayor, Councillor Amanda Stone, said the decision is a step in the right direction for current and future local residents, and the unique neighbourhood character of the area.
“We are pleased that Minister Wynne has agreed to mandatory maximum height limits for this Queens Parade site but are disappointed that setbacks remain discretionary and not mandatory. Due regard should still be given to protecting residential amenity and the heritage streetscape," Cr Stone said.
“The decision applies mandatory maximum of 10 storeys for the main part of the site, and mandatory maximum of 3 storeys for the small triangle site to the rear. It also applies discretionary setbacks. These interim controls will be in place for two years, providing clearer planning direction and certainty for the future height of development in this part of Queens Parade whilst permanent controls are developed by Council.
“Council has been seeking mandatory maximum height controls in activity centres for many years to provide clarity to residents and developers, as well as protection for our much-loved heritage streetscapes. Much more still needs to be done by the state government to protect activity centres across the municipality.
“For example, we recently sought mandatory maximum height controls for Johnston Street, to which the Minister only partially agreed, which was disappointing.
“We are undertaking significant strategic planning work to achieve better planning outcomes, but we need the continued support of the Planning Minister.
“Maintaining Yarra’s liveability and protecting neighbourhood character, especially in our heritage precincts, is a priority for Council.
“Our community has told us that they are not opposed to increased housing density in appropriate locations, as long as new developments respect the local area. The 16 storey development that was originally proposed for this site clearly did not meet the expectations of Council or the community.
“We encourage developers to engage with residents early in the planning process, particularly if planning a large development that will impact people. A development site is not a blank canvas, it needs to respect and respond to the surrounding neighbourhood. Having a genuine conversation with local residents early on could help avoid costly and time consuming VCAT hearings down the track,” said Cr Stone.
At its Council Meeting on 7 February 2017, Council resolved to request that the Minister for Planning apply interim planning controls for 26–56 Queens Parade, North Fitzroy. Read the full Council resolution here.
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