The abysmal record of these councillors continues with the latest VCAT decision on 240-250 McKinnon Road, McKinnon. The application was for 6 storeys, 6 tiny shops and 33 apartments. As per usual, councillors decided to lop off a couple of storeys and a few apartments. The permit they granted was for 4 storeys. Naturally the developer went to VCAT and ensured that council’s record of 100% failure when this occurs was repeated. The developer got his 6 storeys and 33 apartments!

Here are some quotes from the decision. We are not endorsing the member’s decision but simply pointing out that whilst council does nothing about its neighbourhood centres they will soon rival the major activity centres in height, density, and poor residential amenity.

There is no specific design or built form policy or control for the McKinnon NAC

  • As I have indicated, there is no development control, either in a mandatory or discretionary form, that applies in this case. I appreciate the aim for a built form response linked to the role of an activity centre in the hierarchy however, it is not appropriate to adopt a blanket position that four storeys is the maximum height for commercial land in the McKinnon NAC because of controls introduced in other places (but not in the McKinnon NAC) and because each site is different and each proposal must be assessed on its own merits.
  • There is no policy basis to support submissions about a single or uniform height limit for all commercial land in the McKinnon NAC.
  1. I also note Mr Carey’s (for applicant) observation that the assessing Council officer did not recommend deletion of the top two storeys. The officer concluded in part that:

While the proposal will undoubtedly be taller and more robust than adjoining existing development, it is considered that it represents what policy expects in terms of change given the size of the site, the emerging built form in the immediate area and its strategic location

Here is a run down of applications, permits, and amended permits that have all come in, or been decided, since January 2017. Council has refused only a handful. But we are sure they will end up at VCAT and get their permits whilst council sits like Nero fiddling whilst the city burns! The grand total of the following is approaching 400 dwellings.

Bayside, Boroondara, Monash, Maroondah, Stonnington, Melton, Knox, Darebin are just some of the councils who have clearly defined structure plans for their so-called ‘neighbourhood centres’. In Glen Eira, our neighbourhood centres have been left to the wolves! More concerning is that we are yet to receive any indication of:

  • When planning is to be finalised for these centres
  • What ‘controls’ are likely to be introduced? Now that 6 storeys is common, should we expect that council will opt for these height limits?
  • Will the heights be mandatory or ‘preferred’?
  • Why has there been absolute silence on council’s obligation to draft ‘preferred character statements’ for all ‘housing diversity’ areas? Surely this could have been well and truly commenced by now?
  • What impact does all this development in neighbourhood centres have on council’s projected housing needs? – where is this documented, justified, analysed, and communicated?

Our conclusions are that council has already decided on most things. No interim heights for Elsternwick when Bentleigh and Carnegie got the nod is surely an indication that they were preparing for 12 storey height limits in this suburb. Will the same hold true for our neighbourhood centres and the excuse will be that there already are ‘precedents’ set. These precedents are the result of a decade of doing nothing and an agenda that is all for more and more development! The tragedy is that our 5 new councillors have taken up this mantra and joined the Hyams, Esakoff, Magee, Delahunty pro-development faction!

The list!

8 Elm Grove MCKINNON – 3 storey, 6 units

23 Prince Edward Avenue MCKINNON – 18 x 3 storey

30-32 Prince Edward Avenue MCKINNON – 3 storey, 17 units

203 McKinnon Road MCKINNON – 3 storey, 2 units

91 McKinnon Road MCKINNON – 3 storey, 10 units

168 McKinnon Road MCKINNON – 3 storey, 23 units

240-250 McKinnon Road MCKINNON – 6 storey, 33 units

134-138 McKinnon Road MCKINNON VIC 3204 – 3 storey, 21 units (now going for 22 units)

9 Station Avenue MCKINNON – 8 units

15- 17 Station Avenue MCKINNON – 3 storey, 16 units

33 Station Avenue MCKINNON – 4 double storeys

27 Station Avenue MCKINNON – 4 x 3 storeys

40 Station Avenue MCKINNON – 3 double storeys

12 Glen Orme Avenue MCKINNON – 3 x 3 storeys

16 Glen Orme Avenue MCKINNON – 3 double storeys

1 – 9 Claire Street MCKINNON – 53 units

6 Claire Street MCKINNON – 32 units

248 Jasper Road MCKINNON – 4 storey, ???? units

283 Jasper Road MCKINNON – 3 double storeys

254 Jasper Road MCKINNON – 4 storey, 7 units

39 Lees Street MCKINNON – 4 double storeys

2 Shanahan Crescent MCKINNON – 3 double storeys

27 Draper Street MCKINNON – 3 double storeys

1-9 Adelaide – 34 x3 storey

2 Adelaide Street MCKINNON – 4 units

219 Tucker Road MCKINNON – 3 storey, 4 units