Tag Archives: Glen Eira

EAST VILLAGE – FLOODING FEARS

With the upcoming  community forum (27/7/2017) on Draft Concept Plan (prepared by Council, in conjunction with the Victorian Planning Authority) for the mammoth East Village development we thought it appropriate to draw attention to the below Leader Article.

Draft Concept Plan Community Forum

Thursday 27 July, 6.30pm-8.30pm

Duncan Mackinnon Reserve Pavilion, corner North and Murrumbeena Roads, Murrumbeena

Further details and documentation on the Draft Concept Plan are available on Council’s website.  An opportunity for residents to comment on the Plan is also provided.

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East Village development in Bentleigh East sparks flood fears for Elwood and other areas

Bianca Carmona, Caulfield Glen Eira Leader  – July 16, 2017 12:00am

THE proposed multi-million dollar East Village development in Bentleigh East must include a lake or wetlands to prevent flooding, environmentalists say.

The site, formerly Virginia Park, is on East Boundary Rd and was used as a business estate in the ’90s.

Developers are planning to build a precinct with a retail centre, housing, retirement accommodation and a school.

But Elwood Floods Action Group secretary Geoffrey Love said 80 per cent of rain falling on Glen Eira catchments was channelled into Port Phillip.

He said that without a lake or wetlands for the development, the water would run down the storm water system and increase flooding in Elwood.

Mr Love said Melbourne Water had identified three flood retention sites (reservoirs where water could be stored) including Duncan Mackinnon Reserve, Marlborough Street Reserve and Packer Park.

Make Property Group director, and a site landowner, Kris Daff, said mitigating flooding was “definitely on the radar” for the development.

He said sustainability was a “key consideration”.

“One of the core things we’ve committed to is to be environmentally sustainable at multiple levels,” Mr Daff said.

Recently four councils – Glen Eira, Port Phillip, Bayside and Kingston – signed a Memorandum of Understanding about managing the waters with a view to flood mitigation, to develop consistent policies, encourage water-sensitive urban design and use best practice.

Glen Eira planning and place director Ron Torres said it had partnered the Victorian Planning Authority to deliver the East Village Structure Plan.

“Council has partnered with VPA due to its experience with large urban renewal sites,” he said.

Port Phillip Mayor Bernadene Voss said maximising ground permeability through soft rather than hard landscaping would benefit the entire community.

 

HELP SAVE LIND HOUSE

We’ve been contacted by a resident who is concerned that Glen Eira is again likely to lose forever a property of historic and architectural significance.   As per the below Domain article Council has applied to the Minister for Planning for an Interim Heritage Protection Order for the property – GERA applauds Council’s action and hopes that Council has also sought Heritage Victoria’s involvement.

The ‘Lind House’, at 450 Dandenong Road, Caulfield North is described as one of the best and most intact examples of Melbourne’s “mid-century design movement”.  Designed by Anatol Kagan, one of the best architects from the Melbourne mid-century movement, it is an architectural treasure.

Documentation and pictures supporting the significance of the “Lind House” and Designer Anatol Kagan are presented in article published on the Australian Modern website.

We encourage residents to show support for the preservation of the “Lind House” by emailing the Mayor (MDelahunty@gleneira.vic.gov.au) re Planning Permit GE/PP-30607/2017.

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Modernist Caulfield North house faces wrecking ball as council calls for urgent interim protection

An iconic modernist Caulfield North house is under threat of demolition, prompting the local council to seek an urgent interim protection from the planning minister.

Designers and modernist architecture enthusiasts have taken to social media to express their dismay at the fate of the Lind House, bought last year by a developer for just over $2.1 million.

The five-bedroom house at 450 Dandenong Road was designed by Russian-born architect Anatol Kagan, and is a classic example of mid-century modern architecture.

But locals and design experts fear the property could soon be demolished by its new owner, who applied for planning permit to build eight dwellings in its place.

There are no heritage controls on the property, and the two week public notice for objections ended on Tuesday.

Glen Eira mayor Mary Delahunty moved an urgent motion at a meeting on Tuesday night to write to the planning minister Richard Wynne for interim protection.

“Although a permit would have to be requested for it to be demolished, we really wouldn’t have any grounds to refuse that,” she said.

“I’m just trying to make sure that time is given for a proper assessment to be done of its historical significance so that we don’t get faced with this really unfortunate situation where it might be knocked down at any minute.”

​​Cr Delahunty said a major heritage review was underway and encouraged people to alert the council to other significant properties in the area they might not be aware of.

She said heritage experts would examine the Caulfield North house, and they would take into consideration the advice of other experts of modernist-era architecture.

As pressure mounts to increase density across the city, experts say more post-war homes should also be considered for heritage protection.

When Robin Boyd’s Blott house in Chirnside Park hit the market earlier this year, it also triggered fears the property, without heritage protection, might face the wrecking ball if it sold to a developer.

National Trust of Australia, Victoria, advocacy manager Felicity Watson believed Lind House and Blott House highlighted a major gap in the state’s heritage protection.

“When people think about heritage in Melbourne, they often think about Marvellous Melbourne and the gold rush, and the amazing Victorian architecture that we have,” she said. “But what people sometimes forget is that the post-war period in Melbourne was a period of enormous cultural and physical transformation, really of a scale not seen since the gold rush.”

Ms Watson said the heritage system had not caught up with the understanding of the importance of post-war architecture.

“It’s really time to … protect these vulnerable places and do some strategic work to look at that before we lose them,” she said.

“With development pressure increasing and density increasing, all of these places are becoming vulnerable, so we really need to identify which are the best examples that we need to protect.”

Tim Ross, comedian and presenter of TV show Streets of Your Town, said post-war buildings should be given the same respect the terrace houses and California bungalows received.

“Our suburbs should reflect all periods of our history because that’s what gives them their character,” he said.

“Kagan’s work is finally starting to get the recognition that it deserves. We don’t save buildings for today or tomorrow. We save them for 20, 30 years time and beyond.”

Craig Guthrie, a landscape architect and urban designer at Hassell, is also among the experts trying to raise awareness about the potential demolition.

“Melbourne’s growing a lot and we do need to increase density in the inner suburbs, where we have good infrastructure, schools and transport,” he said.

“But we need to protect some of the special places that we have. When 80 per cent of housing is probably mediocre to sometimes poor, we got to keep the good ones.”

A spokesman for Planning Minister Richard Wynne said he had not yet received a request from the Glen Eira Council, and would consider it on its merits if he did.

HELP SAVE GLEN EIRA’s TREES

Unlike all other Metro Melbourne Councils, Glen Eira does not have a significant tree register or a tree protection policy for trees located on private or public (ie. street or park) land.

Over the years, successive Glen Eira Councils, have considered introducing tree protection measures yet, except for the loss of more trees, nothing has been achieved.  GERA,  as per our 2015 posting -“Why doesn’t Glen Eira have a Significant Tree Resister or Tree Protection Strategy ‘, concluded this was because “Glen Eira Council, despite residents expressed wishes, doesn’t want either a Tree Register or Tree Protection Strategy”

Last October residents elected a new Council.

With the current development boom, significant trees located on private land are now seriously at risk – particularly as moonscaping seems to be the preferred first stage of redevelopment.

Mayor Mary Delahunty is currently seeking residents support to get a significant tree register added to the Community Plan at next Tuesday’s Council Meeting (27 June).

Although the register is still at the conceptual stage (ie. without detailed information on tree registration processes or criteria), GERA urges residents to support this initiative.  It is a long overdue first step in a many step process that finally shows Council recognises the importance of tree preservation for current and future generations.

You can register your support for a tree register by sending a letter or email to the Mayor (with a copy all Councillors).   Below is a sample letter/email

Subject:   Request for Significant Tree Register to protect trees on private land.

Too many old and gorgeous trees are being lost for more housing.  Glen Eira needs a significant tree register to protect trees on private land.  It is the right thing to do to keep our city green and environmentally friendly. I urge you to support the inclusion of a significant tree register in the Community Plan. 

Councillors names and email addresses

Cr Mary Delahunty (Mayor): MDelahunty@gleneira.vic.gov.au

Cr Jamie Hyams: JHyams@gleneira.vic.gov.au
Cr Jim Magee JMagee@gleneira.vic.gov.au
Cr Nina Taylor NTaylor@gleneira.vic.gov.au
Cr Margaret Esakoff: MEsakoff@gleneira.vic.gov.au
Cr Clare Davey: CDavey@gleneira.vic.gov.au
Cr Tony Athanasopoulos: TAthanasopoulos@gleneira.vic.gov.au
Cr Joel Silver: JSilver@gleneira.vic.gov.au
Cr Dan Sztrajt: DSztrajt@gleneira.vic.gov.au

Letters can be mailed to

Glen Eira Council at PO Box 42, Caulfield South 3162

CONTINUING SAGA – BETHLEHEM HOSPITAL 19 STOREY DEVELOPMENT

Earlier this month, GERA received advice from the BHCA Group that, barring exemptions and time waivers, the 60 day window for Calvary Healthcare to lodge a VCAT Appeal against Glen Eira Council’s refusal of a proposed 19 storey Health Care and Retirement Village in a Caulfield South Neighbourhood Residential Zone (2 storey height limit) had lapsed.

This advice included a comment that the Group “has contacted Calvary Healthcare with a view to moving forward in a consultative manner, should they choose.  From the outset we have indicated our desire to support an appropriate and sensitive re-development and would welcome any genuine community consultation.”

Unfortunately today, despite the BHCA Group’s wish for genuine community consultation re  sensitive redevelopment, GERA received another advice

  • Calvary Healthcare has lodged an appeal with VCAT and
  • Glen Eira Council and David Southwick (MLA, Caulfield) have both asked the Planning Minister to call in the application.

Details of the advised VCAT hearing dates are included in today’s advice (see below – click to enlarge) and GERA joins the BHCA Group in encouraging residents to register their objection/s with VCAT.

STRUCTURE PLANNING FORUMS

UPDATE 17/5/2017

Don’t forget to attend tonight’s Structure Planning Forum for Elsternwick.  Details are

Wednesday, 17th May, 6.30pm–8.30pm at the Caulfield RSL, 4 St. Georges Road, Elsternwick.

UPDATE 8/5/2017

Don’t forget to attend tonight’s Structure Planning Forum for Carnegie.  Details are

Monday 8th May, 6.30pm–8.30pm

Boyd Room of the Carnegie Library,

7 Shepparson Avenue, Carnegie

As we have pointed out many times, this is an opportunity for residents to assess and comment upon the Structure Planning work currently being undertaken by Council.   It’s about how Council is planning for the expected future developments in the centre and Council’s proposals for ensuring that the Carnegie Centre continues as a safe, socially and economically viable Centre that is readily accessible to all.

If you want a say in what can/should be built where and what basic needs (eg. open space, safety, traffic parking, neighbourhood character) Council should plan to provide for a burgeoning population then attend the forum.

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For those not aware, commencing next week, Council is holding  Community Forums* on the preliminary results of the Structure Planning work being undertaken as a result of the 2015 Ministerial Directive for Glen Eira to review it’s planning scheme.

We urge all residents and interested parties to attend the forums – numbers count.  The Structure Planning (first recommended by an Independent Planning Panel in 2003) currently being undertaken sets the requirements/standards for future developments in Glen Eira, ie what can built where (ie. locations, building uses, heights, footprint, setbacks etc.) .   It also incorporates the myriad of related planning issues (eg. traffic, parking, open space, tree protection, heritage, drainage etc.) which fall within Council’s planning responsibilities.

Although the current focus is on the major activity centres and skyrail route, the requirements set for these centres will also have significant impact on the

  • Requirements determined, at some yet to be determined future time, for the smaller activity centres (a.k.a. Neighbourhood Centres) and
  • Flow on impacts (eg traffic & parking) for the surrounding areas (ie. the smaller activity centres and Neighbourhood Residential Zone).

Now is the appropriate time for community involvement – the planning scheme requirements are being set.  Once set, it is too late to object to planning permit applications that are in compliance with the requirements ( eg. those that have been approved for Carnegie and Bentleigh since the current zones were implemented in 2013).

Below is an email which highlights some of the issues identified by the Centre Road Bentleigh Group (the Group can be contacted via email – centreroadbentleigh@gmail.com).   GERA believes that many of the issues raised below are equally applicable to Carnegie, Elsternwick and Murrumbeena and that the residents of these areas may wish to add further concerns at the forums.

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Over the last few years, Bentleigh residents have been actively lobbying Council to put in the right controls and plans for future developments within the area.  As an outcome of this lobbying, some interim height controls have recently been introduced and Council is now also undertaking a Bentleigh shopping centre and surrounds structure planning process. This structure plan will significantly influence future development

 Our thoughts on the preliminary plan are:  

  • There is no meaningful increase in open space and this is an issue with increasing development and also the general lack of open space in Glen Eira (lowest in Melbourne).  
  • It is proposed that the existing car parks are to be consolidated into a multi-storey with the remainder to potentially be converted into more residential developments. This is not acceptable (Stonnington for example are doing one underground car park and developing open space above). 
  • There is limited if any innovation or creativity in the plan.  
  • It is proposed that the library be relocated ($20M plus cost) however this was not identified as a need by residents.  (perhaps Council wants to sell off the current library site for a major development?). 
  • There is no direction included for future development heights. 

In summary, we believe that more work needs to be done to deliver a plan that is consistent in quality with other local government areas.  

 Please attend the community forum to again ensure Council clearly understands the views of residents.  Numbers are important, please also forward this onto friends. 

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As always, if you have any comments or need additional information, please feel free to comment on our Facebook Page

 

*Details of the Forums, together with support documentation, is available on Council’s website

Bentleigh

Wednesday 3 May, 6.30pm–8.30pm at the Bentleigh Senior Citizens Centre, 2 Arthur Street, Bentleigh to further discuss this preliminary plan.

Carnegie

Monday 8th May, 6.30pm–8.30pm at the Boyd Room of the Carnegie Library, 7 Shepparson Avenue, Carnegie

Elsternwick

Wednesday, 17th May, 6.30pm–8.30pm at the Caulfield RSL, 4 St. Georges Road, Elsternwick.

Murrumbeena

The previously advised 24/5 Murrumbeena Structure Planning Community Forum appears to have been cancelled and has been replaced with a Structure Planning Forum for the East Village Development.  Details of this Forum are provided below.

East Village

Wednesday, 24th May, 6.30pm–8.30pm at the Duncan McKinnon Reserve Pavilion, Cnr. North and Murrumbeena Roads, Murrumbeena

 

EAST VILLAGE – COMMUNITY INPUT BEING SOUGHT

Glen Eira Council, working in conjunction with the VPA (Victorian Planning Authority),  is undertaking  Community Consultation on the proposed massive  East Village re-development and is asking residents to  “Tell us what you would like to see”  included in the development.

To assist residents preparing their submission, below is the submission lodged by GERA.

As usual, if you have any comments or need additional information, please feel free to comment on our Facebook Page

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 SUBMISSION – EAST VILLAGE RE-DEVELOPMENT

Although a “brown field” site, to ensure future development results in a sustainable, socially and economically viable community that enhances the surrounding area, the site should be viewed as “green field”.   Vehicular and pedestrian access to the site and the site’s facilities, are key to determining the viability of the redevelopment.  The creation of precincts (ie. designated areas within the site that provide various community oriented facilities or business focuses) is good, however, determining the location and heights/densities of precincts based on the site’s existing internal road network may not result in a desired community outcome.

GERA requests that the following points be considered

  • Building Heights/Densities – ranging from 2 to a “core height” of 8 stories.

Refer to below illustration (previously presented in November, 2016 presentation) for clarification on indicative heights/densities.

  • Core of Village to comprise
    • Retail and Commercial areas, including shops and stores as per planning definitions (GE Planning Scheme – Clause 72).  To become a centrally located, vibrant village hub.
    • Public transport connections
    • Open Space provisions (ie. communal areas and playground)
    • Potential location for Retirement Village
  • Buildings
    • All buildings above 2 stories to have graduated setbacks to reduce building dominance
    • All residences to have private open space (eg. courtyard at ground level, balconies at higher levels).
    • Density levels defined and applied to site.
    • Diversity of housing types (townhouses vs. apartments) and sizes (1,2, 3 bdr). Ratio specifying no. of 3 bdr to 1 & 2 bdrs dwelling defined and applied.
    • Mandatory requirement for inclusion of social housing.
    • ResCode parking requirements applicable across site (no waivers granted)
    • Below ground basement car park areas not to exceed above ground building envelope
  • Precincts/Areas differentiated by architectural variations and landscaping.
  • Proposed bus route
    • Road accommodating bus route to accommodate bus stops without impacting traffic (vehicle and cyclist) flow.
  • Road network
    • Vehicle movements to/from site impact on existing traffic congestion in North and Boundary Roads to be minimized.
    • To include free, time restricted on/off street parking provisions
    • Possible inclusion of paid off street parking
  • Pedestrian connectivity
    • Safe pedestrian connectivity between all precincts/facilities and adjoining parkland (Marlboro Reserve and Virginia Park)
    • If shared pedestrian vehicular connectivity, separation between vehicles and pedestrians provided (e.g. kerbing, bollards)
  • Proposed School
    • Provision of vehicle drop off/pick up points
    • Proximity to public transport to be considered
    • Height limits (consistent with surrounding precincts/areas) to be defined and applied if proposed school does not eventuate
  • Proposed Retirement Village
    • One on-site car park provided for each unit, on-site visitor parking to be provided
    • Height limits (consistent with surrounding precincts/areas) to be defined and applied if proposed retirement village does not eventuate
    • Possible location in “core” precinct/area to be considered
  • Vegetation
    • Mature canopy trees to be planted in ground (not above ground planter boxes) – refer requirement for below ground basement car parks not to exceed above ground building envelope
  • Open Space
    • Given the magnitude of the site, medium density development will generate a substantial increase in the demand for, and usage of, surrounding parkland. The proposed Open Space Levy of 6% (being marginally higher than that charged for smaller developments – 5.7%), is felt to be inadequate to meet the open space needs of the future residents.  A more appropriate levy would be 8-10%.
    • Within the site, open space (grassed areas and playgrounds) to be provided in accordance with forecast demographics

HELP SAVE McKINNON VILLAGE

UPDATE

At the last Council Meeting (21/3/2017), Council voted to abandon the proposal to

  • rezone the site (88-100 McKinnon Road, McKinnon) to a Mixed Use Zone (Schedule 1) and
  • a Design and Development Overlay to apply a 4 storey height limit

and instead voted to

  • rezone the site to a General Residential Zone (Schedule 2), which has a mandatory 3 storey height limit and requirements for side and rear setbacks, and
  • refer the General Residential Zone (Schedule 2) and an Environmental Audit Overlay to an independent panel in accordance with Section 23 of the Planning and Environment Act 1987.

This change to the proposed zoning, while not acceding to residents request for input into determining the most appropriate zoning (General Residential – 3 stories vs Neighbourhood Residential – 2 astories), does show that Council has acknowledged the concerns expressed by residents.

GERA congratulates both the residents and Council on the decision to abandon the proposed Mixed Use zoning and 4 storey height limit.   In particular, GERA acknowledges Cr. Hyams for his comments on the assistance GERA gave to residents opposing the proposal and for acknowledging the validity of the planning arguments presented, by incorporating them in his reasoning for voting to abandon the original amendment.

 

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Many readers will be aware of a development proposal within the McKinnon Village (a.ka. McKinnon Neighbourhood Centre) that involves re-zoning of a large site that is currently zoned for industrial use to a Mixed Use Zone capped at a height of 4 stories (refer to our Save McKinnon Village posting).  178 residents lodged formal objections to the proposal and 30+ of those objectors attended the recently held planning conference (refer Proposed McKinnon Mixed Use Zone – Planning Conference Report.  Overwhelmingly, the residents found that

  • Council (the Local Planning Authority) had accepted a developer’s proposal without undertaking an detailed analysis of available re-zoning, height options and site limitations* to ensure that proposed rezoning was the most appropriate for the future development of the Village.  The arguments presented to justify the selection of the MUZ and 4 storey height limit were considered weak as they were equally applicable to the selection of site’s surrounding zones (GRZ – General Residential Zone with a height limit of 3 stories or NRZ – Neighbourhood Residential Zone with a 2 storey height limit)

* Site Limitations = on the village’s boundary, surrounding zonings, local road network limitations, significant drainage issues, limited parking and lack of compatible/complementary businesses

  • the presented proposal was both inappropriate and unacceptable and that Council should  abandon/reject the current proposal pending completion of a detailed analysis and the presentation of that analysis to the community via consultation.

The Officer’s Report arising from this planning conference is included the Agenda  for this coming Tuesday’s (21/3/17) Council Meeting (insert link).  Unfortunately, as per the Save McKinnon Village website,

 “The planning officer’s report overlooked many of the objections raised including the most basic, ie.  that Council has yet to undertake an objective analysis to determine and justify the most appropriate zoning or height limit  …  the planning officer is recommending that council vote to send this amendment to an independent panel for their recommendation”

 The Save McKinnon Group and GERA believe Council, as the elected representatives of the community and the Local Planning Authority, should act in accordance with the residents clearly expressed wishes, as afterall it is frequently claimed that “it is your Planning Scheme”, by

  • abandoning/rejecting the proposed amendment
  • undertaking and presenting the analysis then,
  • if necessary, considering a third party assessment.

We accept that committing to above will add a further delay to the lengthy planning scheme amendment approval process (which, incidentally, is not subject to the 60 day time limit applicable to large planning permit applications), however, we contend that compared to lasting impact of unacceptable and inappropriate development such delay is minimal.

The Save McKinnon Village folks are appealing for your assistance in lobbing Councillor’s to vote to abandon/reject the proposal before Tuesday’s (21/3/2017) Council Meeting.  A sample email to Councillors and Councillor contact details are available on their website