We have repeatedly stated that we believe that Glen Eira council has been derelict in its planning processes regarding the new zones. Apart from the lack of consultation, Council has not done the necessary strategic work to ensure the best outcome for residents. When major housing policies have not been touched for over a decade, and when reference documents in the planning scheme go back to 1996, then something is drastically wrong.

It also begs the question of why, and how, other councils such as Stonnington, could get the Minister to approve their zones that clearly are far superior to the ‘one size fits all’ model adopted by Glen Eira. It’s important that residents realise what could have been done, and hence, was NOT DONE!

Below, we present an overview of what Stonnington has achieved via its GRZ and RGZ schedules.

Stonnington has RGZ2 at 13.5metres height. It also has, in both the RGZ1 and RGZ2 Schedules, as well as ALL the GRZ schedules, the following requirement under site coverage –“Basements should not exceed 75% of the site area”. This is important because it means that underground car parking excavations have to be well contained within the site envelope. This helps avoid earth anchors onto neighbouring properties and problems with earth movements that might affect adjoining houses.

Stonnington also has countless other requirements for the GRZ zones in their respective schedules – none of which appear for Glen Eira. Here’s a sample –

Fences – Maximum height of 2 metres in streets in a Road Zone, Category 1. Other streets 1.2 metres maximum height.

Walls on boundaries – Walls should not be located on side boundaries for a distance of 5 metres behind the front façade of the building fronting the street.

Side and rear setbacks – For a distance of at least 5 metres behind the front facade of the building fronting the street, setback new buildings (including basements) a minimum of 2 metres from at least one side boundary and at least 1 metre from the other side boundary up to 3.6 metres in height.

Landscaping – In addition to the requirements of B13, at least one canopy tree should be planted on the site.

The most telling difference however, and as we’ve stated before, is the number of GRZ zones that Stonnington applied and the HEIGHT DIFFERENCES BETWEEN EACH. In other words, they have dissected their suburbs, planned according to recent developments, and didn’t adopt a ‘one size fits all’ approach as Glen Eira did. When we keep in mind that the heights for GRZ  in Glen Eira is an all encompassing 13.5 metres,(PS: oops, this should read 10.5m) it is remarkable what other councils could, and did, achieve. Here are the Stonnington GRZ schedules and their respective height limits –

Grz1 – 13.5m

Grz2 – none specified

Grz3 – 12m

Grz4 – 12 m

Grz5 – 9m

Grz6 – 11.5m

Grz7 – 10.5m

Grz8 – 12m

Grz9 – non specified

Grz10 – 9m

Grz11 – 12m

Grz12 – 9m

Grz13 – none specified