Amendment C231 Queens Parade FAQs

Find out more about the proposed Amendment C231 which affects Queens Parade in Clifton Hill by reading our FAQs:

1. What planning controls already apply?

2. Why are you planning for new development in Queens Parade?

3. What is the basis for the proposed building heights?

4. How do the proposed controls protect the heritage qualities of Queens Parade? 

5. What will the impact be on neighbouring residential properties?

6. Why are mandatory controls applied in some parts and not others?

7. What about the former gasworks site?

8. How are the traffic impacts dealt with? 

9. Where will people park?

10. Will there be more open space and community facilities provided?


1. What planning controls already apply?

This amendment seeks planning controls to be introduced into the Yarra Planning Scheme on a permanent basis. The process of amending a planning scheme takes a long time, so we asked the Minister for Planning to introduce controls on an interim basis while the permanent controls are considered during the amendment process.  
The Minister has approved two sets of interim controls:

• DDO16 which applies to parts of Brunswick Street and the western end of Queens Parade.  These controls expire on 30 March 2019; and
• DDO20 which applies to the remainder of Queens Parade.  These controls expire on 12 January 2020.
Amendment C231 proposes permanent controls that would replace the interim controls.  In other words, if and when the permanent controls are included in the scheme via (permanent) DDO16, the interim controls (interim DDO16 and DDO20) would be removed.

2. Why are you planning for new development in Queens Parade?

As Melbourne grows and changes, the city needs to evolve and adapt. By 2051, Melbourne's population is expected to grow to 8 million. There will be more jobs, new housing, increased demand for transport as well as the need to protect its liveability and sense of community. The state government has prepared Plan Melbourne to plan for long term change. The plan supports new housing and development in activity centres such as Queens Parade where there is good access to jobs, shops, services and public transport. This amendment is seeking to ensure that the growth and change is of an appropriate scale and form. It also seeks to balance the need for this growth with the need to protect the heritage buildings and the character of the centre.

3. What is the basis for the proposed building heights?

The building height requirements in the DDO were prepared with input from urban designers and heritage experts who considered a range of constraints and opportunities to identify recommended building heights. In particular, the experts have considered the impact that different scales of development will have on the visual appearance of the streetscape, particularly areas with heritage buildings, and the amenity of adjoining residential properties. Their advice is contained in the following reports:

Queens Parade Built Form Framework – Hansen Partnership
Queens Parade Built Form Heritage Review – GJM Heritage Consultants

Generally, taller development is restricted to larger sites where setbacks and building design can be used to reduce the visual impact and to minimise amenity impacts, including overshadowing of private open space. A lower building height is generally required in areas with heritage buildings and with a direct interface with existing low scale residential properties.

4. How do the proposed controls protect the heritage qualities of Queens Parade?

The amendment will help protect the heritage qualities of Queens Parade in a number of ways.

It is proposing to update statements of significance for the heritage buildings. A statement of significance identifies what about the place is important, why it is important and how it is significant.

The heritage experts have updated existing statements of significance and prepared new statements for places with an individually significant grading to better identify the important elements of the place. A place can be an individual building, a precinct or a landscape. Well prepared statements help Council understand what parts of a place are significant. This in turn helps us to make appropriate decisions about how a development proposal impacts on the heritage significance of a place.

One of the objectives of the DDO is to ensure that new development respects the qualities of heritage buildings and retains views to the following landmark buildings: 

• the belfry and tower of St John the Baptist Church

• the former ANZ bank building

• the former United Kingdom Hotel 

• the Former Clifton Motors Garage. 

The DDO will help to achieve this objective by ensuring that the scale of new development does not overwhelm a heritage building or streetscape and does not obscure key views to these landmarks.

Council wants to protect heritage and also to accommodate appropriate new development in order to house a growing population. We think the controls we have prepared do this and will assist us to make future decisions that strike that balance between protecting what we have and allowing the city to grow in an appropriate way.

5. What will the impact be on neighbouring residential properties?

The DDO seeks to protect the amenity of adjoining residences while allowing for appropriate levels of adjoining development.We cannot ensure that there will be no impact from new development – our role is to ensure that the impact is not unreasonable.

The DDO includes a design objective that seeks to ensure that the overall scale and form of new buildings provides a suitable transition to low scale residential areas and protects these properties from unreasonable loss of amenity through visual bulk, overlooking and overshadowing. 

It also includes setback requirements designed to achieve this objective.

6. Why are mandatory controls applied in some parts and not in others?

The introduction of mandatory controls into planning schemes is tightly governed by Planning Practice Note 59 - The role of mandatory provisions in planning schemes and Planning Practice Note 60 - Height and setback provisions in activity centres. Read the planning practice notes on the Victorian Government website. They advise that the Victorian planning system is ‘performance based’ which means the system specifies an objective and provides a degree of freedom around how it is to be achieved.This can be beneficial as it allows for variation, innovation and unforeseen uses but this flexibility can reduce certainty.  

The practice notes advise that mandatory provisions should only in exceptional circumstances, such as in areas of high heritage value.  They also include other criteria that must be met.  

We have tried to balance the requirements of the practice notes with the community’s desire for increased certainty about future development outcomes. As a result, we propose mandatory controls in:

• locations that are identified to be a high value heritage streetscape of significance (parts of Precinct 4); and/or 
• locations where it is considered that taller development would have an adverse impact on the amenity of neighbouring residential properties (parts of Precinct 2 and 4) 

7. What about the former gas works site?

The former gas works site is not included as part of this DDO as it has been subject to a separate planning process run by the state government. It was recently approved via Amendment C243. It allows the redevelopment of the site for medium density residential development from 6-10 storeys.  

8. How are the traffic impacts dealt with?

State planning policy directs development to activity centres such as Queens Parade.  It does this in part because activity centres are well serviced by public transport.  This has the potential to reduce the need to travel as the local services people need are at their doorstep. If they do need to travel, having transport at their doorstep provides them with an alternative to driving.

When we consider each individual application for new development, applicants are required to prepare traffic assessments that address the proposal’s impact on traffic. On larger developments, we also require applicants to prepare green travel plans which promote the use of sustainable transport (walking, cycling and public transport) over car-based transport.

We will continue to improve sustainable transport options in Yarra.

9. Where will people park?

Parking rates for new development are set by state government and are included in all planning schemes state wide. The DDOs do not therefore need to include any parking requirements.

The parking provisions in the Yarra Planning Scheme allow for reductions in the number of parking spaces that a development needs provided that a car parking demand assessment is prepared by a qualified traffic engineer. 

The assessment considers a range of matters including sustainable travel options. In accordance with Council’s parking policy, new residents of these development will not be eligible for on street parking permits.

10. Will there be more open space and community facilities provided?

This amendment does not propose new development, rather it seeks to establish height and setback limits for new development.

The redevelopment of the gasworks site includes a new school and an indoor recreation facility. We will continue to review and monitor the need for Council supplied public open space and new community facilities.

We will also lobby state government to deliver new facilities in response to changing community needs.