On 6 Dec 2017, DRA made a response to the Development Application for to vary the lease and develop a 102 bed residential aged care facility on Grey St, Block 13 Section 49 Deakin,  201732711.  DRA submission

DRA believes a high-rise nursing-home on a tiny block on Grey Street, Deakin is not the best use of the site. DRA is concerned that the proposal will cause a number of problems for the residents and neighbours. It will exacerbate existing traffic problems and noise, fails to provide adequate parking and will overlook the adjacent residential area. The size and location of the site is inappropriate for the intended use by clients. The proposal will limit options for the route of light rail.

DRA retained the services of Ted Streatfeild RPIA, an expert in planning to review the DA. His review is at link.  He identified that the DA does not comply with the Development Control Plan applicable to this site in a number of respects. Given that the DCP takes precedence, this is a major issue.

His review  also identified issues in regard to parking inadequacy, the removal of protected trees, the lack of an active frontage to Hopetoun Circuit and waste collection conflicting with pedestrian access and car parking at the front of the building.

The full proposal can be downloaded from ACT Govt website here

Over 3,000 people signed our petition for better planning to protect Red Hill Woodland, including Section 66 Deakin (Kent Street) and the Federal Golf Course lease. Thanks to Caroline Le Couteur MLA and Nicole Lawder MLA, who spoke passionately and at length about the need for appropriate planning processes to ensure our precious Red Hill woodlands are protected, and to protect Canberra’s heritage in general. Ms Le Couteur’s persuasive interviews on WIN Television News helped capture our local residents’ voices.

Red Hill Support Crew: Representatives of Deakin Residents’ Association, Hughes Residents’ Association and Red Hill Regeneration Group at the Legislative Assembly for tabling of their petition, 30 November 2017

Ms Le Couteur’s also put out a press release reading:

“I’m very pleased to table this contribution from more than 3,000 residents, who have shown they don’t want inappropriate development in Canberra,” Greens Planning Spokesperson Caroline Le Couteur MLA said.

“Clearly, much of the local community feels that they are being side-stepped in the consultation process.”

 

A community panel was established to “hold open and inclusive discussions about how the Federal Golf Club site should evolve and develop into the future” The Panel aimed to “endeavour to form a consensus view on development opportunities”.

Six Panel members have found it necessary to present their own report to Members of the Legislative Assembly. The six Panel members are the:

  • Deakin Residents’ Association
  • Conservation Council ACT Region
  • Friends of Grasslands
  • Garran and Hughes Residents’ Action Group
  • Hughes Residents’ Association
  • Red Hill Regenerators

The key recommendation made by this group is that:

the ACT Government suspend all development activity in the Red Hill open space area until an overarching planning and management framework for the area has been prepared and implemented.

The report is at the FEDERAL GOLF CLUB report to ACT Assembly Nov 13.

A 102-bed aged care facility is planned for a block of land in Deakin that was occupied by the Margaret Dimoff Art Gallery, formerly known as the Solander Gallery. The 2973 square-metre site is located on the corner of Hopetoun Circuit and Grey Street next to Canberra Girls Grammar School.

The proposal can be downloaded here

DRA held a public meeting on the proposal in August 2017.

Tony Powell AO, former National Capital Development Commissioner and a vocal critic of development activity in Canberra, spoke on 24 Oct about how to improve planning.  His title was ‘“KILLING CANBERRA” – coping with an incompetent ACT Government and the corruption of due process”.   His background paper and speaking notes are on the DRA website. Two key points were:

“What is needed is a planning organisation with a core of professional staff of the order of 100, civil engineers, transport planners, town and regional planners, architects, landscape planners and designers, economists, sociologists, project development managers, writers, publishers and public relations managers so as to be in a state of constant engagement with the local community, business  and trade interests, and thus dispense with the current practice of heavy reliance on external consultants which is largely unreliable and inefficient.”
“There is a widespread public apathy on the part of my children’s generation to become involved in town planning and social issues generally, and consequently there is a need for them to give more consideration to the effectiveness of political parties at election time because it is leading to the rise of the ‘professional politician’, which is not a good thing.”

 

 

Canberra’s Planning and Building rules.  How can they be improved?

PUBLIC FORUM Tuesday 12 September 2017
7.00 pm Eastlake Football Club,
3 Oxley St, Griffith

Agenda

7:00 pm – Introduction: Marea Fatseas, Chair ISCCC.
7:05 pm – Opening remarks by Rachel Stephen-Smith, Minister for Community Services and Social Inclusion, on behalf of Mick Gentleman, Minister for Planning and Land Management
7:10 pm – Presentation by Ben Ponton, Director General, Environment Planning and Sustainable Development on Planning in Canberra
7:25 pm – Presentation by David Peffer, Deputy Director General, Access Canberra, on building regulation and enforcement
7:35 pm -Presentation by Gary Petherbridge, President, Owners Corporation Network Canberra on apartment building construction issues and rectification of problems
7:45 pm – Q&A with panel of the three speakers
8:45 pm – Chair ISCCC – Possible motions from the floor and wrap-up

Download agenda

RECORD OF PUBLIC MEETING CONVENED BY
DEAKIN RESIDENTS’ ASSOCATION, CANBERRA BRIDGE CLUB, 16 AUGUST 2017

The following link contains a record prepared by the DRA, plus commentary and views  from Purdon Planning.

Approximately 83 people attended a public meeting convened by the Deakin Residents Association (DRA) held at the Canberra Bridge Club on 16 August 2017.

The purpose of the meeting was to discuss two proposed developments in Deakin –

  • redevelopment of the St Luke’s church site in Newdegate Street (Block 1 Section 30 Deakin) and
  • redevelopment of the art gallery site bordering Hopetoun Circuit and Grey Street (Block13 Section 49 Deakin).

Proponents of the proposed developments addressed the meeting and comments and questions followed from the floor.

A questionnaire was circulated to each participant inviting written comments on the proposals, as well as views on the need for more integrated planning of development in Deakin.

A record of the meeting is at  RECORD OF DRA PUBLIC MEETING held 16 August 2107

Landscapes uncluttered with advertisements used to be one of Canberra’s
defining attributes. In recent years ugly signs have proliferated, and are getting
bigger. With this proposal there would be even more of them.
One of the most striking impacts of crossing the border into Queanbeyan is the
sudden appearance of bigger signs. Proposals to allow billboards will bring
Queanbeyan visual pollution to Canberra.
Current regulations on sign size are not enforced. There are already billboards
outside the Deakin shops advertising pizzas, and outside the National Zoo to
name two. Fyshwick and Philip are becoming an unregulated free for all.
Poles that were placed on Kings and Commonwealth Avenues to enable flags to
be flown for visiting heads of state are now used as fluttering billboards to
advertise everything from dog shows to exhibitions at the national institutions.
Canberra airport has been a law unto itself, and is a foretaste of the size of the
massive billboards that could follow a relaxation of current (unreinforced)
regulations.
There are already too many road signs. Parking signs proliferate. Why not do
away with most urban parking signs and use procedures in the other local
government jurisdictions and in the ANU. Red paint on the gutter – no stopping; a
double yellow line – no parking; single yellow line – one or two hour parking; and a
dashed line longer parking.
Within 100 m of Hopetoun Circuit roundabout there are 20 signs, including a ‘billboard’
advertising Calthorpe’s House. Some seek to control speeds from 50 to 60
and a 40 km/h zone which is 75 m long. Drivers have enough distractions.
No more bigger signs.
George Wilson
President
Deakin Residents Association
www.deakinresidents.asn.au
Ph 62812160

The shortage of parking at the Equinox Building  is causing overflows of 50 – 100 cars into the adjacent former bowling club site  and nearby residential streets.

Current proposal to develop the former bowling club site as Equinox 2 will likely see additional parking shortages.

Redevelopment of the Telstra building in Kent Street and St Luke’s Church Newdegate Street will add additional pressure and increase traffic.

DRA is concerned that ACT Government does not see these new developments as creating a parking shortage problem and traffic  – but rather, a mechanism to discourage car use. See correspondence with officials which follows :

  • “I understand your concern, but our parking policies are designed to balance provision of private vehicle parking with encouraging modal shift towards more sustainable transport modes rather than single-driver-private-car. We do not support providing a dedicated car park (free or at-cost) for every person who may wish to drive to an employment node.”
  • “There is no government policy that would provide more taxpayer funded free parking in a central area such as West Deakin with existing high levels of service and accessibility for public transport and active travel (walking and cycling) – and nor would I advise a government to adopt such a policy.”

DRA understands that free car parking will be removed in the Geils Court and other West Deakin car parks and that pay parking will be reintroduced notwithstanding that it proved so undesirable in early 2016.

Parking was restricted in Beauchamp St on a trial basis for 12 months after limited public consultation of potentially affected residents in the area. It seems likely, the Government will introduce more parking restrictions wherever overflows exist, thereby changing the nature of our residential streets.  This could affect any street within walking distance (ie several hundred metres) of the West Deakin offices, Deakin shops, or busy locations – which is most of Deakin.  This would convert most of Deakin into a no-parking, or 2-hour only zone so that residents will lose the ability to park all day outside their own homes. It wil fill the suburb with ugly signs.

Conclusion

DRA believes there is a needs for a parking and traffic strategy that considers proposed developments and needs of residents.

The meeting on 16th considered proposals by

  • the Anglican church for eight ‘supportive housing’ units on St Luke’s Church site, Newdegate Street (Block 1 Section 30 Deakin)
  • Provectus  for a 90 bed residential aged care accommodation, 12 assisted living units, plus 40 seniors respite places on the Art Gallery site, 38 Grey Street (Block 13 Section 49  Deakin) 

The meeting was attended by 83 people. Most were Deakin residents.

In general, there was  support for the St Luke’s development, although there were concerns about the possible sub lease arrangements.

On the other hand, there was angst about the Grey Street development. Questions were asked about increased traffic, pedestrian safety, off site parking, underestimation of parking impact, increased noise (especially for those in the Ambassador apartments), building design, local shadowing, over-scale and inappropriate development for the site.

Resolving traffic, parking and congestion issues are key requirements for progressing the Provectus proposal. Quality data and professional credible modelling are the foundation of solutions.
A questionaire circulated at the meeting proposed that individual proposals in the suburb should not to be considered in isolation but be part of a strategic assessment that integrated with other developments. There was strong support that the accumulated impact should be assessed of the Anglican and Provectus developments and those by the Federal Golf Club, the Telstra site on Kent St, Equinox_2, light rail park and ride and overflow parking from West Deakin offices and Parliament.

and

Follow this link to see answers (dated 28 July) from Purdon Planning to questions about the planned Grey Street site/Provectus development.

For more information: 0427975500.