Elsternwick structure plan

Mr SOUTHWICK (Caulfield)

My adjournment today is to the Minister for Planning, and the action I seek is that the minister immediately defer any decisions on the Glen Eira council structure plan, which will see massive overdevelopment, particularly within the areas of Elsternwick, until such time as residents are properly consulted.

Today I tabled a petition from 1300 residents around the Elsternwick precinct. Many of them live in homes of heritage value. Some of those homes date back to the late 1880s. They are very, very concerned about the overdevelopment that is happening throughout my electorate of Caulfield. This master plan which the Glen Eira council is proposing could certainly see loss of character and amenity and massive overdevelopment, which would see some single –storey homes being completely taken over by large towers in the area.

These residents need to be consulted, and we certainly want to make sure that we do not take up the squeeze that is being left behind from the protection that the Bentleigh residents have had in the overall precinct. We know that there is development need for housing, but Caulfield should not bear the brunt of that. The master plan sees a 20 per cent increase in population and we do not want to squeeze all of that into areas like Elsternwick.

The Liberals’ plan has already been stated. We will reintroduce a two -dwelling limit on neighbourhood residential zones, reduce height limits in neighbourhood residential zones and bring back the 9 –metre discretionary height limit in general residential zones. Certainly this would make a huge difference to many of those residents that I am talking about. But we do not want to see this rushed through. We have got an election in November, and we think that the residents should have the opportunity for proper consultation, not rush things through quickly before the election so people do not have the ability to have proper consultation. We saw the attempted rush through of the Ormond sky tower, and certainly we had to intervene in the upper house with that. We have seen Bethlehem Hospital propose 16 storeys in Kooyong Road. We are seeing massive overdevelopment through Caulfield. Enough is enough, and we are asking the Minister for Planning on this occasion to step in and make sure no decisions are made whatsoever until such time as the issues about excessive height and issues with car parking, traffic and general congestion in our area are fully explored and residents are properly consulted and protected when it comes to living in the great suburbs of Elsternwick, Caulfield and the broader City of Glen Eira.