Thursday, May 30, 2013

design guidelines off to panel

report from the roundtable – 28 may

At this week’s meeting councillors had to consider submissions to what we call C126, a Planning Scheme Amendment (PSA) incorporating a set of Design and Development Overlays (DDOs) that provide guidance about the type of built form we’d like to see in our townships. The DDOs are a translation of Vision2020 by Design, ultimately for incorporation into the Yarra Ranges Planning Scheme.

I was pleased to be able to move the motion to request that the Minister for Planning appoint an independent planning panel to consider all the submissions to PSA C126.  Given that there are some issues that cannot be resolved in some submissions the only option available to council is to take the PSA to a panel or abandon the amendment, which certainly wasn’t on the cards.

The DDO’s will give the planning scheme more rigour as they provide a finer grain of detail of what the built form elements of townships should be. The DDOs detail what council’s expectations are in relation to built form and will assist future applicants in understanding Council’s design objectives.

It was interesting to note that of the 72 submissions, 57 of them were in relation to the issue of drive through restaurants in the Dandenong Ranges. In considering the submissions officers have recommended that an addition be made to the design guidelines for  DDO14 (this applies to Olinda, Mt Dandenong, Sassafras and Kallista) and DDO15 (this applies to Belgrave) being:
Buildings that include drive through sales facilities associated with a convenience restaurant are discouraged”.

Officers have also recommended that Tecoma (originally in DDO13) be included in DDO14 as a response to submissions about the similarity of Tecoma with other villages of the Dandenongs.

I was pleased to support the officer’s recommendations and this will form part of council’s submission to the planning panel. 

The planning panel will also provide submitters with the opportunity to participate in the panel process to reinforce their original submission. I’d certainly encourage all submitters to participate, it is important that the planning panel have a full understanding of the issues raised.

I’m pleased to say that councillors voted unanimously to support the motion.
Note: Crs McCarthy and Avery absent, Cr Child left the chamber declaring a conflict of interest due to an interest in properties in Warburton and Yarra Junction located within the exhibited DDOs.


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