Sunday, April 21, 2013

you aint seen nothing yet


I had the pleasure of speaking at the No Maccas in The Hills community meeting today. It was great to see a couple of hundred people join the meeting, forfeiting their sunny Sunday afternoon to hear more about the campaign.

I spoke about the process of the demolition on the site as well as a couple of important consultations the council is currently undertaking.

I explained the demolition was a separate process to the construction and that a demolition permit would be issued by a private building surveyor, as part of that process an ‘asset protection permit’ would need to be issued by council to ensure the protection of council assets, in this case the footpath and drains. I said council would get a copy of the demolition permit and also be advised of when the demolition would take place. For more general info on the demolition process read my recent blog entry here.

I talked first about council’s consultation on our health and wellbeing plan and how important it is to input to this consultation. I have heard so much about the proximity of this development to sensitive uses such as the Primary School and the PreSchool, it’s important that if the community are concerned about this and any potential to link to childhood obesity then they need to input to the online forum and the health and wellbeing consultation is the right place to do it. You can read more about participating here.

I then talked about what’s called in planning jargon, C126. C126 is a planning scheme amendment that seeks to include Design and Development Overlays (DDOs) in the planning scheme to guide the built form in townships. Given that built form was such an important element in the objection to McDonalds I expected that the community might include their concerns about drive through restaurants and their impact on pedestrian friendly design and pedestrian friendly townships. I also talked about Hurstbridge and their “township zoning” which means there is greater scrutiny over any application process unlike the Business One zone currently in place in Tecoma and that may be something the community might like to further investigate. You can read more about submitting to the C126 consultation here.

I encouraged meeting goers to participate across the consultation process, it’s very hard to make a case to my councillor colleagues and to other tiers of government without submissions calling for change, submissions and participation from the community gives a far greater credibility to any advocacy or planning scheme changes we might undertake.

I finished by saying if anyone asked me if the campaign had reached its full potential I would have no hesitation in telling them you aint seen nothing yet.

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