The Anglican Church of Canberra and Goulburn are proposing to redevelop their site, Block 1 Section 30 Deakin, which currently houses St. Luke’s Church and associated residences.

At the link below is preliminary information on a proposal “to house eight supportive housing units” on the site. It has been provided by Purdon Planning. The DRA is planning to meet Purdon Planning both to gain more information and to discuss with them the public consultation processes. If you have any specific issues you wish to raise at this stage you can contact us through the website or by email to secretary@deakinresidents.asn.au.

Community Consultation Package – development of St Luke’s Church site

Grey Street Site – Block 13 Section 49 Deakin
Information about a proposed residential aged care accommodation development on the Grey Street site now occupied by an Art Gallery is below. This Grey Street site is also covered by an NCA Development Control Plan which can be viewed at this link: Adelaide Avenue Development Control Plan.

We understand that Purdon Planning plans to undertake letterboxing in early August and to conduct a ‘drop in’ session some time after that. We will advise when we know more. The DRA is planning to meet Purdon Planning both to gain more information and to discuss with them public consultation processes. If you have any specific issues you wish to raise at this stage you can contact us through the website or via email to secretary@deakinresidents.asn.au

Information on proposed Grey Street development provided by Purdon Planning:

The Site

Block 13 Section 49 Deakin (the Art Gallery site) (subject site) is located on the corner of Hopetoun Circuit, Grey Street and Adelaide Avenue (southbound off-ramp) and has an approximate area of 2,973sqm.

The Proposal

Provectus Care (PC) is proposing to build and operate a 90 bed residential aged care accommodation development, 12 assisted level care and 40 places for  seniors respite care. The development will be a high quality care facility and is intended to set a new benchmark in residential aged care for Canberra.The facility will offer residents a comfortable and stimulating environment in a beautiful, and prestigious setting with a wonderful outlook.

The project will involve demolition of existing structures that were constructed in the 1970’s. PC Deakin aspires to become an important part of the local Deakin community allowing an ageing local population to remain in their local area, and support other social and business infrastructure in Deakin.

The Proponent & Project Team

PC was established by Dr Shane Moran in 2001. Dr Moran and his family have been active in the aged care sector for over 60 years. PC is currently in a growth phase with centres already established in Melbourne, Sydney and Beijing and ongoing projects in Sydney, the Gold Coast and now proposed for Canberra (Deakin).

Provectus has engaged a team of local planning, design and construction professionals with experience in aged care accommodation to complete the project.

The team includes (but not limited to):

  • AMC (design)
  • Sellick consultants (traffic and civil engineering)
  • Purdon Planning (stakeholder consultation & approvals)

Stakeholder Engagement

Provectus intends to consult widely with all relevant stakeholders during the planning and design stages and prior to lodgment of the DA.

This consultation has commenced and will include adjacent lessees/residents, local centre traders, community organizations, and local politicians as well as representatives for approval agencies.

A brochure will be distributed to residents in the adjoining suburban areas and a drop in-session will be held at the Gallery during August 2017. A date for the drop-in session has not been finalised but will be outlined in the brochure.

Project timing

At this stage the Proponent is intending to lodge a DA with ACTPLA during the 3rd quarter 2017, with construction to start (subject to approval) in 2018.

It is likely that the project will take 12 to 15 months to complete, with occupation during late 2019.

Project Benefits

The project will bring a number of benefits to Deakin and Canberra including:

Increased social infrastructure for the ageing to address growing demands for quality aged care
New job opportunities in construction, aged care services and property maintenance and other services
New investment in Canberra
Support for existing and planned public transport (Woden light rail)
Ageing in community
New gateway to Deakin
Improved public realm

Many Deakin residents use the Curtin shops and have an interest in the shops and their future. A planned re-development of 6/7 stories, overshadowing the public square, is likely to be taken as a precedent for higher scale development at other shopping centres currently subject to height limits of two storeys. Curtin shops is classed as a ‘Group Centre’ (as are the Manuka and Kingston shops) and Deakin shops is a ‘Local Centre’. Group Centres and Local Centres currently have regulated height limits of two storeys. [ See current height regulations here.]

On January 13th DRA was asked for support on this issue by the newly formed Curtin Residents Association (CRA). They advised that “ the proposed development is for a six-storey building, including a double-height ground-floor level and 5 residential floors, with 3 levels of car parking underground. The total height above the square would be 24 metres, which is equivalent to a normal 7 (if not more) storey building”. The proposed development is opposed by a large number of Curtin residents and many have signed a petition to this effect.

DRA agreed to assist the CRA to publicise a ‘protest rally’ about the development to Deakin residents.

This rally will be on Saturday 21 January at 11 am at the Curtin shops.

The CRA is hoping people attending will also sign the CRA’s petition.

DRA intends to provide a supporting Submission on the current Development Application. The date for Submissions has been extended to 31 January 2017 .

The CRA would also encourage individual residents to provide Submissions supporting the CRA position.

DRA encourages Deakin residents who use and have an interest in the future of the Curtin shops to make their own Submissions.

Advice about the proposed development and a link for making a Submission on the proposed development, can be found at http://curtinresidents.asn.au.

Di Johnstone
Vice-President

During the past year the Committee has continued to work on issues of concern to Deakin residents, including arguing for the continued application in consideration of development applications of the Garden City Values and Principles in our suburb.

Heritage issues

In March the DRA made a Submission on proposed ACT Five Year ACT Heritage Strategy in which we reinforced our concern that notwithstanding paper commitments to the Garden City concept for Deakin, and the Garden City Principles, both are being quickly eroded in Deakin through inappropriate development with iIndividual blocks are being leveled and trees demolished to be replaced by large site-covering structures, with impermeable external areas and gardens of low shrubs, grasses and bushes. We noted particular concern for prospective and likely intensive developments in the RZ2 zones that are damaging the streetscapes and transforming the garden nature of the suburb.

We also argued for the development of a Precinct Code for Deakin that would constrain inappropriate development to help preserve the suburb’s heritage and Garden City values. We noted, too, that social values in Deakin are largely connected to its small parks and open spaces which had great value to the local community, especially to community living adjacent to them, and the potential threat to these from inappropriate development.

Girl’s Grammar and Latrobe Park

We were approached by the Grammar School with a proposal to re-landscape Latrobe Park. This would involve levelling and re-turfing a playing field, installing a running track and constructing a toilet and changing facilities. The school wishes to use the Park for sports activities during school hours with ‘occasional’ use on weekends .
After meetings with school officials, we assisted the school to organize an information session, which was well attended. We produced an extensive record of the session which is on the DRA website.

The issues relating to this proposal include :

  • community attitudes to the use of the Latrobe Park by the school for permanent sporting facilities
  • whether the school should be granted a 25-30 lease for the use of public land for school sporting facilities
  • whether the school should be granted a lease or a licence to use Latrobe Park
  • assurances that the public would l continue to have access to Latrobe Park
  • the nature of any fencing that might be constructed, and
  • whether the school could get the use of the current ACT Government sheds to house grounds maintenance equipment.

We have had a further discussion with the school and ACT officials about the issues. We expect more discussions in the near future.

ACT Election

Prior to the election, the DRA invited candidates for the electorate of Kurrajong to respond to a questionnaire about local issues. The Liberals, the Greens and independent candidate Marea Fatseas provided responses which we posted on our website. I take this opportunity, on behalf of the DRA and Deakin residents, to warmly thank those parties and candidates who responded to our questions.

Safety measures at the Deakin shops

Over the years there have been a number of accidents in the parking area around the Deakin shops. Our previous President, Peter Wurfel, put a lot of effort into this issue, which we have followed up. The result is that safety barriers are now in place around the shops. Throughout this campaign we also liaised closely with the pharmacist at Deakin and thank him for his concern and persistence in support of public safety measures to benefit Deakin residents and all who use the shops.

Other safety measures on which we have initiated action include requesting additional pedestrian crossings in the area around the shops and a 40 km/hour speed limit. This speed limit has been implemented around some other suburban shopping centres. However the current speed limit in Hopetoun Avenue, an increasingly busy road, is still 60 km/hour.

Parking at the Deakin shops

The major problem with parking at the shops appears to a lack of enforcement of existing regulations by the ACT Government. There is a need to meet the parking needs of a range of users. A continuing failure on the part of the ACT Government to enforce the soccer club’s lease conditions is limiting the availability of spaces.

Parking in West Deakin

During the year the DRA has worked closely with West Deakin residents to address parking problems caused by workers in West Deakin parking in residential streets, particularly in Beauchamp Street. Committee members met with West Deakin resident representatives and ACT Government officials and were successful in getting pay parking removed from the car park in Geils Court. This has reduced but not removed the problem. With the expected redevelopment of the bowling club site (Equinox 2) it is anticipated that parking problems will get worse. We continue to work with active and engaged residents in West Deakin and in particular support a review of the provision of parking in West Deakin ahead of the planned demolition of the bowling club and the redevelopment proposals being considered.

Watch List

Issues that we have been monitoring, and that may require active response at any time, include:

  • Large-scale residential and other developments on public land between West Deakin and the Yarralumla Brickworks site.
  • Increased through-traffic arising from population increase, especially at Molonglo suburbs and potential residential development at Federal Golf Club.
  • Impact of planning options related to proposed light rail between City and Woden, probably via Adelaide Avenue.
  • National Capital Authority allowing development of multi-unit residences between National Circuit and State Circle.

Committee matters.

I can report that committee meetings have been well attended throughout the year. Committee members have also worked hard and met and consulted between meetings. The DRA has continued to participate actively in the work of the Inner South Canberra Community Council.

DRA membership numbers have continued to grow during the year. In addition we have a number of residents who are not members but are interested in the work of the Association and subscribe to our mailing list.

During the year Richard Thwaites has done an excellent job in managing our website. This is in addition to serving as Secretary of the DRA.  Richard is stepping down at this meeting and we warmly thank him for all his hard work for the Deakin community as DRA Secretary.

I would also like to thank the other members of the committee for their efforts during the past year.

John Bell
President, Deakin Residents’ Association, Inc
29 November 2016

[THIS POST  REPLACED OUR NORMAL FRONT PAGE DURING THE ELECTION CAMPAIGN ENDING 15 OCTOBER 2016.]

On 27 September DRA sent a set of issues and questions to all candidates for the seat of Kurrajong for whom we had email addresses. This included all candidates of the major parties and some independents.

The purpose was to give Deakin residents specific information from each candidate relevant to the issues our members have identified as important right now for this suburb.

All responses received from candidates are collated against each question, in the order in which they were received by DRA. The Liberal and Greens parties have provided a single response to cover all of their respective candidates, although each candidate was invited to provide an individual response.

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1. The DRA considers that Garden City Principles and Values must be applied to all developments in Deakin.  We are especially concerned that any development approvals in Deakin should require strict adherence to these Principles, in particular those relating to solar access, minimising overlooking and retaining existing vegetation on the block.

  • How do your policies support the Garden City Principles and Values for developments in Deakin?

 LIBERAL PARTY

Canberra Liberals believe in the Garden City principles. That’s why we are encouraging development pressure away from the suburbs and into built-up town centres. Our lease variation charge relief will ensure that town centres that have become moribund and run-down can be revitalised, while the ‘bush capital’ character of our suburbs can be retained.

Labor’s tram will mean the wholesale extermination of mature trees right across town. The tall trees along Northbourne Avenue distinguish our city gateway and soften the look of surrounding high rise buildings. This forest-high tree line will be and replaced with a cobweb of tram wires by Labor and the Greens. The miniature ornamental trees that replace them will not soften the look of the new tram wires and poles.

The impressive trees on Commonwealth Avenue, from Albert Hall south wil lalso go. The tall trees on Adelaide Avenue will go. Tram poles and wires will cause the destruction of the dominant urban vegetation on too many of Canberra’s main boulevards.

THE GREENS

Our Better Development package includes a review of the Territory Plan to support smarter, greener developments that ensure the protection of the look and feel of our existing suburbs.

The ACT Greens support solar access and the solar access requirements which have been introduced.

The ACT Greens support garden city principles, our Keeping Canberra Green package includes investing $5.6 million a year in planting an additional 7,000 trees to maintain and enhance our urban forest. We also commit to establishing a canopy target of 25% summer shade for Canberra’s streets.

MAREA FATSEAS (Independent)

I have a strong commitment to the Garden City Principles and Values, demonstrated by my strong advocacy on behalf of Yarralumla residents and inner south Canberra residents on major developments such as the massive proposed development near theCanberra Brickworks. As former President of the Yarralumla Residents Association, led a strong community campaign that resulted in a backdown by the ACT Government from a development of 1800 dwellings to a maximum of 380 dwellings,thus helping to preserve significant areas of green urban open space. I cooperated closely during this campaign with the Deakin Residents Association, Inner South Canberra Community Council, and other stakeholders.

Besides my proposal for a root and branch review of the planning system, I will advocate for a clearly articulated urban, suburban and streetscape masterplan for Canberra supported by precinct and suburban character plans including green infrastructure. That would aim to identify areas where high density is appropriate, for example in town centres, and how the character of existing suburbs can be respected in future development. The review of the Planning Strategy 2012, due in 2017, provides an opportunity to do this.

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2. The DRA believes that that where a development does not accord with an approved application, the developer should be required to take action to strictly meet the requirements of the approved application.

  • As a member of the Legislative Assembly, what action will you take to ensure developers comply with approved applications?

LIBERAL PARTY

As with any area of regulation, we will expect and require officials to enforce the rules they are administering. It is tempting for builders to cut corners in an attempt to increase revenues from projects. The Canberra Liberals will require site visits by Planning Directorate officials to be undertaken before certificates of occupancy are issued to large multi-unit sites.

THE GREENS

The ACT Greens strongly believe that developments should meet the approved application. As an MLA Shane Rattenbury has made representation to the Minister for Planning on behalf of constituents to take action to ensure that unapproved works are rectified in accordance with the approved DA. As part of our Better Development package we have committed to independent auditing of private certifiers, to address this issue and to improve the quality of construction.

MAREA FATSEAS (Independent)

A core element of my platform is root and branch reform of the planning system. I will advocate for an inquiry into planning and land development to review governance, legislation and regulations, administration, the use of Ministerial call-in powers, enforcement of planning rules, and appeal mechanisms.

In that context, if elected to the Assembly, I will use my role on the cross-bench to make the Government accountable for enforcement of its own planning rules. If a legislative change is needed to ensure that developers build according to the approved applications, then I will advocate for that.

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3. Deakin residents have long argued for a detailed Deakin Precinct Code with measurable and mandatory planning requirements to prevent inappropriate development in residential areas.

  • Will you support the funding necessary for the development of this Code and will you commit to working with the DRA to finalise it?

 LIBERAL PARTY

A Liberal Government will commission an independent comprehensive review of the Territory Plan, to be completed in 2017. We will also introduce a heritage grading system, to give certainty and clarity about heritage listed property.

A Canberra Liberals government will also consider appropriate amendments to the Deakin Precinct Code.

Canberra’s planning system needs greater simplicity and fairer enforcementof the existing rules. Part of the current problem is that the Governmentis too quick to take over projects that are not commercially viable and toinvoke call-in powers too often, provoking community cynicism about theeffectiveness of the planning framework.

THE GREENS

The ACT Greens are committed to genuine community consultation as outlined in our Better Development package. The ACT Greens are committed an independent planning authority to undertake tasks such as developing master plans and precinct codes, and have allocated additional funds for professional staff resources.

MAREA FATSEAS (Independent)

Yes, I will advocate for the funding necessary for the development of this Code and will be committed to working with the DRA to finalise it.

The trialling of the development of precinct codes in consultation with the community was a major priority that I worked on with DRA as former President of the Yarralumla Residents Association and former member of the committee of the Inner South Canberra Community Council. After our significant efforts, the ACT Government informed us that there were insufficient resources to undertake the trial. I consider that putting resources into this kind of planning at suburban scale will save future resources consumed in addressing objections about inappropriate and spot development.

________________________________

4. Deakin residents have sought a 40km/hour traffic zone around the Deakin shopping centre to improve pedestrian and driver safety. There are similar zones around shopping areas in Manuka and Kingston.

  • Will you commit to extending the 40km/hour zone around suburban shops to Deakin?  If no, why not?

 LIBERAL PARTY

Over the past 4 years Liberal MLAs for Molonglo have held regular mobile office meetings at the Deakin shops and are well aware of the difficulties caused by lack of parking, exacerbated by cars that stay well beyond short term shopping needs, and the inappropriate pedestrian crossing. They have seen at first hand the near misses on the pedestrian crossing and the cramped car parking. We will expedite examination of options for alternate pedestrian crossing points and consider the speed limit in that context.

THE GREENS

The ACT Greens strongly support slow speed zones around areas where there is higher pedestrian/cycling activity, such as schools, shopping areas and community facilities, as well as areas where we want to encourage more walking/cycling. The Greens lead the push for the 40kmh zones that have now been implemented in all town centres and group centres. We agree that these zones can be extended to local centres as well, and that Deakin shops would be a good place to do this, subject to some analysis to determine if there are any unforeseen impediments.

MAREA FATSEAS (Independent)

I commit to engage with the Deakin community on this issue. I will seek accident and other statistics to gain an understanding of the current situation. I would also like to draw on the outcomes of similar zones established in Manuka and Kingston in advocating for a 40km/hour traffic zone around the Deakin shopping centre.

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5. Deakin residents consider that the current location of the pedestrian crossing on Hopetoun Circuit is incorrect and that it needs to be moved to ensure pedestrian safety.

  • Do you agree to ensure that the pedestrian crossing on Hopetoun Circuit is relocated to where it is needed?

LIBERAL PARTY

See answer to Q. 4

THE GREENS

We agree to review the crossing location in consultation with Deakin residents.

MAREA FATSEAS (Independent)

I am very concerned about pedestrian safety. I commit to engage with the Deakin community and with relevant government agencies to identify and relocate the pedestrian crossing to where it is most needed.

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6. Deakin residents place high importance on protecting and preserving existing public land and access to public land in Deakin.

  • What policies do you offer to ensure the protection, preservation and continuing access to public land in Deakin?

 LIBERAL PARTY

See answer to Q. 1.

THE GREENS

The ACT Greens are fully committed to the protection of public land, including land that was granted to clubs for community uses.

Our Keeping Canberra Green package includes an initiative to invest $8.5 million to improve the quality of public spaces, particularly high use parks and public spaces around shopping centres, through better landscaping and maintenance.

We will also invest $300,000 per year to employ community co-ordinators to support volunteers in urban areas such as Park Care, Water Watch, and community garden volunteers.

MAREA FATSEAS (Independent)

Given community disquiet about the loss of public land to the private sector, I will give priority to improving transparency, consistency and community engagement with respect to any proposals to change a lease purpose from community facility/urban open space to a commercial or other private use.

We must ensure that adequate public land remains to meet community needs, and that Canberrans have access to green open space for enjoyment and active recreation.

________________________________

7. Many Deakin residents are concerned about growing parking pressures in Deakin as it becomes more densified. Parking restrictions are needed in affected streets and action is required to enforce restrictions and prevent a growing problem of illegal parking on nature strips.

  • How will you ease parking pressures in Deakin, enforce parking restrictions and ensure commuter parking does not encroach on Deakin residential zones?
  • What action will you take to prevent parking on nature strips?

LIBERAL PARTY

We will encourage development pressure away from the suburbs like Deakin and into built-up town centres. Our lease variation charge relief will ensure that town centres that have become moribund and run-down can be revitalised, while the ‘bush capital’ character of our suburbs can be retained. We will consult residents groups on parking issues that arise from development.

THE GREENS

We support measures to prevent problem parking – such as enforcement to prevent parking on nature strips, and parking restrictions to prevent problem parking in residential areas, in consultation with residents. More broadly our transport and planning policies – which support public and active transport – are designed to try and ease issues of car dependence. Without this approach issues of congestion and parking pressures will only worsen. 

MAREA FATSEAS (Independent)

I appreciate the parking pressures in Deakin as I have many times found it difficult to secure parking to attend meetings or other functions in the suburb.

If elected to the Legislative Assembly, I will engage with Deakin residents, relevant government agencies and my Assembly colleagues to identify the areas facing the greatest parking pressures, and agree on appropriate parking restrictions and enforcement action to prevent parking on nature strips.

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8. Residents in West Deakin are especially concerned about parking pressures in that part of the suburb resulting from pay parking in employment zones.

  • Will you commit to working with the DRA and West Deakin residents on parking solutions in West Deakin?

LIBERAL PARTY

See answer to Q.7

MAREA FATSEAS (Independent)

Yes, I will commit to working with the DRA and West Deakin residents on parking solutions in West Deakin.

THE GREENS

Yes, as noted above we are happy to work with local residents to help find solutions to parking pressures. 

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9. Deakin residents are concerned that there should be genuine public consultation on any major developments in Deakin and those that will have an impact in Deakin.

  • How will you ensure Deakin residents and the DRA are consulted on plans for major planned developments in Deakin and in surrounding areas?

LIBERAL PARTY

A Canberra Liberals Government will develop a Planning App or mobile site to encourage community participation in planning decisions, including through a feedback function for Development Application consultation. The current Government engages in sham consultation and oversteps its role as both a regulator and a developer. We will also ensure thorough consultation with interested groups and individuals on the Territory Plan, other planning legislation and major developments.

MAREA FATSEAS (Independent)

The need for genuine public consultation is an issue dear to my heart and one of the factors that led me to stand as an independent in the ACT elections, given my frustration with the way such consultation is undertaken currently.

If elected, I will advocate for the community to be engaged from the beginning on an issue, and at different stages of the decision-making process, and with a range of approaches. I will use diverse approaches myself in engaging with the community, and will evaluate those approaches to see if they could be improved.

I will support community engagement approaches consistent with the core values of the Quality Assurance Standard for Community and Stake holder Engagement (https://www.iap2.org.au/documents/item/391), especially:

• The right of those who are affected by decisions to be involved in the decision making process.

• The promise that the public’s contribution will influence the decision.

• The importance of input from participants in designing how they participate.

• The provision to participants of information they need to participate in a meaningful way.

• Communication to participants about how their input affected the decision.

THE GREENS

As part of the ACT Greens Better Development Package we commit to a process of genuine community consultation. The Greens want to re-establish trust with the community regarding future directions of the City. There is a need for dialogue across the demographics to ensure that our city works for young and old, for today and into the future.

The ACT Greens are committed to facilitating and engaging broad, inclusive and meaningful conversation around the future of our city through a process of deliberative democracy. This could include citizens’ forums on planning and development, to provide an opportunity for lively and constructive conversations between different groups that have different aspirations. This will help build understanding and foster ideas that can respond to currently competing interests. This could include for example existing residents who wish to maintain the qualities of the communities that they have helped develop and where they may want to age in place. It would also involve younger people who aspire to live in a vibrant city with housing options to rent or buy, including in established areas.

As a minimum the Core Values for the Practice of Public Participation (as defined by the International Association for Public Participation) would be applied in a genuine way. These are that:

  • those affected by a decision have a right to be involved in the decision-making process.
  • there is a promise that the public’s contribution will influence the decision.
  • sustainable decisions recognise and communicate the needs and interests of all participants, including decision makers.
  • those potentially affected by, or interested in a decision are sought out and their involvement facilitated.
  • participants have input in designing how they participate.
  • participants are provided with the information they need to participate in a meaningful way.
  • participants are communicated with on how their input affected the decision.
20 Sep / 2016

Current Issues updates

Our Deakin Matters  newsletter distributed on 28 August updated subscribers on current issues in Deakin:
• Latrobe Park,
• Pedestrian safety at the shops,
• West Deakin commuter parking,
• Formation of a Forrest Residents group,
• ACT Election candidates public forum.

Meeting with Girls Grammar and ACT Govt on Latrobe Park future.
After several postponements, DRA finally had a meeting on 8 August with both CGGS and the relevant ACT Government office – formerly TAMS, now known as “Transport Canberra and Community Services” (TCCS).

The meeting was not to make decisions, but to gain information and ensure that all parties were aware of different interests and what would be required for any proposal to be considered.
There has been no change to the CGGS proposal since the 12th May public meeting. DRA representatives have made clear that our role is to convey views of residents and keep residents informed, not to agree to anything that does not have community support.

The situation was left with Girls Grammar to consider whether they would make a proposal on the basis of a licence (non-proprietory) rather than a lease (proprietory).

Bedford Street/Latrobe Park parking
Following complaints by residents about all-day parking hampering access to Latrobe Park, Deakin Pre-school and Bedford Street residences, the government has contacted Bedford Street residents regarding time-limited parking on at least one side of Bedford Street. Consultation is not complete and we understand residents have different views on the best solution.

Pavement safety barriers at Deakin shops
DRA has been working with business operators at Deakin shops for several years lobbying to to improve the safety of pedestrian traffic. This follows a number of incidents where vehicles have mounted the pavement outside shops and caused significant damage.

Visitors will note that substantial protective barriers have recently been installed between the car parks and the footpath, to the benefit of all users.

Pedestrian crossings and speed controls on Hopetoun Circuit.
Danger to pedestrians and to vehicular traffic on Hopetoun Circuit between Adelaide Avenue and Stonehaven Crescent has been raised repeatedly by residents, and by DRA, with the ACT Government.

We continue to seek a proper meeting with officials to discuss solutions. Options might involve a 40kph speed limit, relocated pedestrian crossings, improved signage, or other traffic engineering elements.

West Deakin pay-parking impact on residential streets
An active group of local residents has been negotiating effectively to reverse the trend of commuters to the West Deakin Business Precinct lining residential streets (Jersey, Nathan, Lawley, Norman, Fuller and Beauchamp Streets), following the ACT Government’s action to impose pay- parking in the Geils Court parking area.
The residents have successfully lobbied the ACT Government to reinstate free all-day parking for about 150 parking spaces in Geils Court and the removal of all parking meters in that car park, other than some 30 spaces that will remain for 2 hour parking. There are already signs that the reinstatement of free parking has had a definite impact and reduced the number of vehicles parked in residential streets. The ACT Government, via Roads ACT, has also responded positively to the group’s concerns about the need for a review, to address the provision of sufficient parking in new Precinct developments such as the Deakin Bowling Club and elsewhere in the Precinct.

While welcoming the initial response by the ACT government and the promise to undertake a full review of the Precinct’s parking problems, affected residents plan to maintain community pressure to ensure changes made to date become permanent and that, in the absence of a stated timeframe, the review is undertaken in a timely manner.

Formation of Forrest Residents Group
DRA is in contact with a growing group of Forrest residents who are in the process of establishing a formal residents group, similar to DRA. We anticipate future cooperation on many issues of common interest. A public meeting to establish the Forrest group is scheduled for Tuesday, 30 August.

ISCCC “Meet the Candidates” Forum – 27 September
On 15 October Deakin residents will vote to elect 5 members to represent us in the ACT Assembly in our new electorate of Kurrajong. Make sure you know where they stand on the issues that matter to you – planning, transport, parking, heritage, public housing, rates, development on public land, transparency in government, etc etc.

The Inner South Canberra Community Council is hosting a “Meet the Candidates” Public Forum on 27 September 2016, 7.00 pm, at Eastlake Football Club, 3 Oxley Street, Griffith. Hear what candidates have to say and question them, to decide who earns your vote!

Here is the ISCCC flyer for the Meet the Candidates Public Forum.

After several postponements, DRA finally had a meeting with both CGGS and the relevant ACT Government office – formerly TAMS, now known as “Transport Canberra and Community Services” (TCCS).

The meeting was not to make decisions, but to gain information and ensure that all parties were aware of different interests and what would be required for any proposal to be considered. There has been no change to the CGGS proposal since the 12th May meeting. DRA representatives have made clear that our role is to convey views of residents and keep residents informed, not to agree to anything that does not have clear community support.

The situation was left with Girls Grammar to consider whether they would make a proposal on the basis of a licence (non-proprietory) rather than a lease (proprietory).

The summary below is as agreed by the participants.

DRA, CGGS and TCCS Meeting – Latrobe Park

Date: Monday 8th August 2016, Time: 10 – 11am,

Location: Canberra Girls Grammar School

Present: John Bell, Richard Thwaites, Di Johnstone (DRA), Matt O’Brien (CGGS), Fleur Flanery, Julie Garbode (TCCS), Emma Wright (sec)
Documentation provided

  • Summary of information session dated 12th May 2016
  • Summary of CGGS proposal for La Trobe Park
  • Map of La Trobe Park

VIEWS PRESENTED:
Deakin Residents Association
An information session was held in May; formal community consultation is still needed
Since May, the DRA received many comments from concerned members of the community regarding the proposal.

  • Overall loss of public space is the primary issue, whilst some fear the potential for changes to land use.
  • Community seems more interested in improvements to facilities, such as toilets and picnic areas, rather than upgrade to the land.
  • Fences viewed by many as restrictive and exclusive.
  • CGGS girls’ parking in the Latrobe Park carpark and along Bedford Street has restricted public vehicle access to Latrobe Park and resulted in residents’ requests for time-limited parking, however girls continue to park all day and many residents consider the school responsible.
  • Community considers the term ‘lease’ implies a change in proprietorship of the land and that long term leases may also be converted to other uses. The nature of a ‘license’ for use may avoid these assumptions. Provided appropriate clauses are agreed upon and there is sufficient transparency, a license proposal may receive less opposition.

Canberra Girls Grammar School

  • Initial proposal from May remains unchanged.
  • Facilities would be offered to the public outside of school hours.
  • Parking not likely an issue. Matt can discuss vehicle access in future if need be.
  • CGGS is not necessarily chasing up either a lease or a license at this stage; still early on in the proposal.

Transport Canberra and City Services

  • Community’s wishes set the framework for what goes ahead.
  • Fences are popular with dog owners in dog parks.
  • Permits are not appropriate in this case; they are for short-term, periodic, event-type use of public space.
  • License would allow Government to retract with short notice. Government would have to compensate the license-holder in that case
  • Cost of license or lease depends on the conditions agreed upon in the contract, such as what contributions CGGS is making and maintenance of the park
  • TCCS to provide a more comprehensive summary of the differences between permits, licenses and leases.

The Federal Golf Club on Red Hill is proceeding with a proposal to develop 125 residences on part of its land (a concessional lease that is currently zoned for parks and recreation).

A meeting of members on 20th June gave the Club board authority to go ahead with seeking the lease variations and zoning changes that will be required, and to conclude negotiations with the private developer.

Proposed plan for housing development on Federal Golf Course, Red Hill

Here is the Club Board’s leaflet promoting the development to its members, which describes the proposed arrangement.

The development involves a 99-year sublease to a private firm who will build, own and operate the residential development as an “0ver-55” residential community, surrounded by the golf fairways.

A number of community groups have already expressed concerns over the proposal, which is the latest in a long series of attempts by FGC to capitalise on the land it was granted on concessional terms for a recreational facility.

Strong opposition is being expressed by the Garran and Hughes Residents Action Group.

Ten community groups have signed a letter seeking a meeting with the Planning Minister, Mick Gentleman, to discuss their concerns.

This is the letter from the community groups.

Deakin residents may share concerns about

  • direct effects on the environment of Red Hill,
  • the continued privatisation of public recreational land, and
  • the traffic impact on Deakin if Gowrie Drive (up Red Hill from Melbourne Avenue) becomes the sole access route for a community of about 250 new residents.
  • If a second access road to the Golf Club is put through from Garran, this would create a rat-run across Red Hill between South Canberra and Woden Valley.

In considering the proposal, it is worth noting that the Federal Golf Club itself will receive very little cash. Instead, the developers propose to make a range of capital improvements to the irrigation and other infrastructure of the golf course, and to build a luxurious clubhouse that will also be an amenity for the residents of the premium private housing community (and so increasing the capital value of the housing).

In order to proceed, the proposal will need to pass several points that provide opportunities for community input: a lease variation, variation to the Territory Plan zoning, and a Development Application. DRA may make submissions at any of these points, so we would welcome residents’ views on how to respond.

Many residents of streets close to the West Deakin employment zone (west of Kent Street) have raised concerns with DRA about extensive commuter parking in their residential streets, since the introduction of pay parking in the employment zone of West Deakin.

Following the recent Transport Forum hosted by the Inner South Canberra Community Council, a meeting was arranged for West Deakin Residents to discuss these issues with senior ACT officials. On 7 June, DRA President (John Bell) and Vice-President (Di Johnstone), together with affected resident representatives Bruce Taplin and Angelo Zorbas, met at West Deakin with Jim Corrigan (A/g Deputy Director-General, City Services, TAMS) and Robyn Hawkins (Roads ACT).

The group noted parking issues around Rosemary Dobson Park, and several streets in the area as well as nearby car parks. Some possible solutions were raised, to which the ACT officials agreed to give thought.

A Roads ACT survey is currently in progress and finishes on Friday 10 June, covering some but not all the streets in the relevant area. The officials were alerted to the weakness of a less-than-comprehensive area survey, as solutions in some streets could simply shift the problem to other streets. The DRA will stay in close touch with West Deakin residents and the government about this issue. There will be further updates as things progress.