Independent panel to assess C178

A Google Maps view of Coldstream from above.

Yarra Ranges Council will request the Minister for Planning to appoint an Independent Planning Panel to consider all submissions for the proposed Amendment C178.

In April and May 2019, Council exhibited a Planning Scheme Amendment which sought to to implement the recommendations of the the Coldstream Structure Plan adopted by Council in 2016.

The amendment was put forward to adapt the planning controls on key areas of land, to guide Coldstream’s development in coming years.

Council received 13 submissions during the exhibition period.

Key issues raised included concern over new subdivision, impact on neighbourhood character, opposition regarding development fronting on to open space and the increase in people using the local park, as well as issues relating to specific properties.

The feedback received during the exhibition period resulted in officers recommending additional changes to the amendment, including:

  • Proposing an Environmental Audit Overlay to the commercial properties to the west of Maroondah Highway, north of Station Street
  • Changing the General Residential Zone Schedule 3 (GRZ3) so that permits are only required for single dwellings on lots of under 300sqm. Any properties bordering Maroondah Highway, Killara Road or a Neighbourhood Residential Zone would need a planning permit separately under the proposed Design and Development Overlay 20
  • Adding a requirement in Design and Development Overlay 20 for landscaping in green wedge areas to consider fire risk.

Some properties having their overlays changed from Significant Landscape Overlay 22 to Significant Landscape Overlay 23, to remove the site coverage requirements and facilitate future subdivision and development.

Due to the range of issues expressed in submissions, it isn’t possible for Council to resolve all the matters raised.

The next required step in the process is for this proposal to go before an independent planning panel, established by the Minister for Planning, where they will consider all submissions including those from Council, community members, developers, government agencies and service providers.

The Planning Panel will consider all submissions and make recommendations to Council.

Council will then consider the Panel’s recommendations before deciding whether the Amendment should be adopted, adopted with changes or abandoned.

Both the Directions and the Planning Panel Hearings will be open to the public.

Mayor, Richard Higgins, said the Planning Panel would give residents more opportunity to share their thoughts about the proposal.

Our decision at the Council meeting will begin another part of the Planning Scheme Amendment process, where submitters can continue to have their say on the application and its changes, and have them considered by the independent panel,” Cr Higgins said.

“All submitters will be notified in writing about this step and we’ll continue to work with them to clarify and resolve any outstanding issues they have, where possible.”

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