Great news to hear that the Minister for Planning has
approved Yarra Ranges Planning Scheme Amendment C126 without changing the
wording submitted by council.
The journey to get to this point has been a long one
and started back in May 2008 with the development of Vision2020 by Design.
Amendment C126 is an articulation of Vision2020
by Design, a document which provides guidance on desired built form outcomes
across the Yarra Ranges. C126 is a translation of Vision2020 by Design
into Planning Scheme controls known as Design and Development Overlays (DDOs).
The newly approved overlays will provide design guidelines for new
developments across town centres in Yarra Ranges. They are all about the built
form component of new developments. The design guidelines will make it easier
for potential applicants and other interested parties to understand Council’s
design objectives for the future development of town centre areas.
Amendment C126 received a high level of media interest due to the
inclusion of a provision that “Buildings and works
that comprise drive through sales facilities are
discouraged”, with this provision covering the
townships of Belgrave, Kallista, Mt Dandenong, Olinda, Sassafras and Tecoma.
As part of the public exhibition process council received 73
submissions, the majority of those from community members in the Dandenong
Ranges concerned about the prospect of more convenience restaurants in the
hills. McDonalds also submitted to the public exhibition process, citing
concerns with the DDOs around the ‘step down’ approach to building heights, the
retention of buildings that contribute to the character of the town centre, the
need for verandas to be designed based on established veranda design and lastly
the provision to *discourage drive throughs associated with convenience
restaurants (*note the final wording of this provision was changed to: buildings
and works that comprise drive through sales facilities are discouraged).
It should be noted that the DDO’s give greater weight to built form
outcomes and will be useful planning policy into the future, sadly we didn’t
have the weight of planning scheme policy when considering the McDonalds
application and could only rely on Vision2020 by Design which does not have the
same status as a Design and Development Overlay.
I congratulate the Minister for approving the amendment as presented,
certainly has made a lot of locals very happy and the new DDOs will be part of
the many tools available when assessing built form elements in new developments
across Yarra Ranges into the future.
The next step in affording greater planning protections to the Dandenongs
is the development of a Localised Planning Statement, Yarra Ranges is one of 4
councils in Victoria to have this additional policy control granted by the
Minister for Planning. I’m currently in discussions with the Minister for
Planning to ensure it includes the Dandenongs.
Labels: c126, cr samantha dunn, DDO, localised planning statement, shire of yarra ranges, tecoma, vision 2020 by design