Planning regulations

By 19 September 2023March 11th, 2024No Comments

Planning regulation in Victoria is the responsibility of both the State and local government.

The opinions expressed remain those of the writer; it should not be taken that Eastsider News and ICNG  necessarily supports the views expressed.

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Victoria’s new Housing Statement: panic stations and not evidence based

Ian Hundley

On September 20, Premier Daniel Andrews launched Victoria’s Housing Statement–The Decade Ahead 2024-2034. A declared objective is to build 648,000 new homes in metropolitan Melbourne within the next decade and about 1.84 million new homes by the year 2051. This is purported to meet projected population growth and to ease spiraling house prices, whilst constraining this growth within the existing Urban Growth Boundary.

The statement raises many disturbing issues, not properly considered by the Government, some of which are discussed here.

To read the full article, please click here.

It’s not NIMBYs but developers

Michael Buxton

The Victorian government is set to announce the final deregulation of the planning approvals system. Already few uses and developments are prohibited. Mandatory rules on matters such as buildings heights are not allowed. Now, approvals will be ‘code assessed’ and allowed by right, removing the need for permits and resident rights.

Local government will become little more than a post box for developers. This will be the final step in a long process aimed at handing Melbourne and the State over to the powerful property sector.

The government’s justification is worthy of Machiavelli …  To read more of this article, click here.

The ‘YIMBY’ Planning Advocacy Movement in Melbourne

David Berry

The ‘YIMBY’ Planning Advocacy Movement in Melbourne

David Berry

A Melbourne chapter of the incorporated ‘Yes in My Backyard’ (YIMBY) movement was established in 2022. Its major objective (according to its website) is to become an important advocacy group to facilitate housing abundance in Melbourne.

The YIMBYs, mostly comprising young, well-educated professionals, want residential housing densification for inner and middle suburban Melbourne for the following reasons:

  • To relieve the city’s current housing shortage
  • To slow Melbourne’s outer suburban sprawl
  • To provide for more affordable housing options including more social housing and
  • To supply more housing near workplaces and public transport nodes.

Whilst these are laudable goals, there is real concern that the group’s unstated motive is to support developers by opposing legitimate community opposition to inappropriate residential development in residential neighbourhoods. If successful, this opposition could result in the dilution of current planning controls that help preserve the neighbourhood character of our suburbs.

To read the full article, please click here.

Are we walking tall but not thinking big?

Chris Trueman

Is it really surprising that, in the context of a major Metropolitan Activity Centre (MAC), proposals are being put on the table by Vicinity Centres to build a 51-storey residential tower and a 28 story commercial building in Box Hill?

With the confluence of train, tram, bus and the world class automated underground Suburban Rail Loop (SRL) being planned as we speak, and a major shopping and restaurant precinct to boot – all effectively immediately adjacent to or below the towers – what better place to concentrate city dwellers?

Yet at the recent Whitehorse Council meeting where planning permits were granted to Vicinity (the owners of Chadstone Shopping Centre) to proceed with their planned big-tower development, the vote was only 7:4 in favour. A relatively close call.

To read the full article, click here.

Residents up in arms over destruction of neighbourhood amenity

Richard Blakeman

Once the site of the largest chicken farm in the Southern Hemisphere and a locally famous menagerie that drew visitors from near and far, the Aisbett Estate in Camberwell is now the subject of a dispute over another type of huge development – an imposing house currently under construction that pushes planning regulations to the absolute limit and possibly beyond.

The building under construction, an imposing three-storey dwelling in Quercus Court, Camberwell, has exposed potential loopholes in planning regulations that may permit unscrupulous operators to flout the regulations with impunity.

To read more, click here.

1964, the year everything began to change.

RMIT Professor Michael Buxton is well known for his urban activism and academic publications. But he has turned to a new type of urban analysis in a coming of age novel centred on a group of school students graduating at the end of 1963.

His novel 1964 follows their progress through the year as they leave the security of school to discover unfamiliar workplaces and an escalating series of confronting experiences.

This is the story of a lost city, Melbourne, swept away by powerful interests and the rejection of social norms and institutions, of how we have arrived at where we are today, and of what we lost on the way. It tells of how the stability, optimism and progressive improvement of the 1950s gave way to the uncertainty, disruption and doubt of the modern world.

One of the group, a journalist, soon realises that local worlds are collapsing, the city he knows is to be obliterated, and he is to be sent to fight in a South-East Asian war, Confronted by increasing uncertainty and unanticipated but incremental failure leading to sudden catastrophe, he becomes part of the pivotal events he reports and makes life changing decisions.

1964 is published by Hardie Grant Publishing.