Toward Enduring Protection For Queens Parade

Yarra Amendment C231 - Queens Parade planning controls

Went on exhibition starting 2/10 with public submissions closing Friday 16th of November.

This begins the last step in getting enduring protections for Queens Parade.

Yarra has a web page here : Queens Parade Controls C231

Letters have also been sent out to many residents outlining the process and opportunities for consultation.

A copy of the letter is downloadable via this Google Drive Link.

Down the track there will be a planning panel (similar to Gasworks) who'll make a recommendation to the minister. You can be absolutely certain that property developers will strongly push for the changes they want. It's crucial that community voices balance those calls.

PFN will do our part. Everyone's worked hard to get this far but most development sites in Queens Parade sit idle waiting perhaps on this outcome. If the current temporary controls lapse or are relaxed when they become final then those cranes will mobilise in force once again.

Gasworks The Next Steps - Summary

The new portal for the Fitzroy Gasworks engagement is open : http://www.development.vic.gov.au/projects/fitzroy

Link to Video from Richard Wynne with even more on the Gasworks Project - includes some great historical shots

More Information on the Gasworks Page - accessible via the page menu above the banner.

The  Monster on Moonlight

622-642 Nicholson Street North Fitzroy

Live in North Fitzroy/North Carlton/Clifton Hill ?

Please Consider Objecting 

PLN18/0172

A developer is proposing a 42 metre high monster beside two residential complexes, currently home to more than 150 people in North Fitzroy.  These new residents have embraced living in a higher density community, in a precinct zoned as mixed use, as encouraged in both municipal and state policy.

Then an application like this comes along. A 42 metre monolith with a late night bottle shop and supermarket, serviced by delivery and garbage trucks from 7am, 6 days a week.  Quiet enjoyment of your home - gone. Safe access to your home - gone.  Privacy - gone. Neighbourhood character - gone. Traffic on Nicholson Street - worse.

The residents support a Medical centre and commercial offices, provided the building fits the scale of the neighbourhood, and respects the amenity of the neighbours. The excessive height, bulk and the endless trucks are totally inconsistent with a good planning outcome for this site. 

Why put in an objection ? I live streets away.

This proposed mixed use zone development, if approved, will set a diabolical precedent for all commercial and residential properties near tram lines or major arterial roads, particularly away from Neighbourhood or Major Activity Centres.

There are other negative aspects to this development, like minimum Sustainability standards, Ned-Kelly bike racks, limited activation at ground level, another late night bottle shop, but these pale before the toxic amenity and neighbourhood character impact.

So far nothing this bad has been approved in the City of Yarra north of Alexandra Parade. Without a loud and clear mandate from the community, the council is in a weaker negotiating position when talking to the developer, and at VCAT.

Why put in an objection ? I live nearby, the council will take care of it.

Objections from the neighbours have the biggest impact - one way or the other.

Planning is set up to favour the developer, so if you do not oppose a development, you are considered to be _ok_ with the proposed plans. Every close neighbour who does not object is a win for the developer.

The council has limited resources, and many major projects to assess, so the council is not going to spend precious resources opposing proposals the neighbours do not object to. VCAT take into account the level of opposition, and planning issues raised by the neighbours. Without the neighbours objections the council has a much weaker case at VCAT.

The reverse is also true. If there is a strong body of objections from the people most effected by the development, then the council must address the objections raised by residents. If there is a strong set of planning issues raised by  neighbours, and ideally the wider community, the council officers are in a stronger negotiating position when discussing possible improvements with the developer. The council's case is also stronger at VCAT.

How can I put in an objection ?

You can type your objection in the provided on-line form or as a file attachment - via the City Of Yarra page for this development application. (click thru link above - its orange)

You can also send in your objection as a letter to the planning department - remember to include the application number PLN18/0172.

You don't have to quote the planning scheme clauses. You just need to say, in your own words, what you object to personally, the impact it will have on you and yours. The officers will know which parts of the planning scheme apply for each of your issues.

It is worth remembering all objections are public documents. They are not published on-line but they can be read by anyone who asks to see them at the town hall (including the developer)

1. Toxic Amenity Impact on neighbours.

This is by far the worst aspect of this development. In principle a development should minimise its negative impact on the amenity of its neighbours, strive to contain any negative community impact within the site boundaries. This speaks to the common law principles underpinning planning law and to orderly planning.

This proposal is distinguished by how, this development, is designed to dump all its negative impacts, out of the site and on its neighbours. The moonlight site gets to be the biggest building and monopolise the laneway. The neighbouring residential complexes get the loss of pleasant outlook, the loss of sunlight, the loss of the reasonable expectation of quiet enjoyment, the loss of clean air, the loss of privacy, the loss of relatively safe pedestrian and cycle access, the loss of safe and available car access.

Truck Traffic - Access and Safety

Trucks will use the entire width of Bik Lane when turning into this narrow ROW. The other Bik Lane users, all the Roi apartments and the all the warehouses behind "moonlight", will have their access blocked by these trucks.

Roi Apartments and the warehouses rely on Bik Lane for all access, pedestrian and cycle access as well as vehicles. This entire block is a Mixed Use zone. It is not safe, if the only pedestrian access, is shared with large Delivery and Garbage Trucks. Would you like your children walking to school, down a path with supermarket delivery trucks ?

Truck Noise and Pollution

The developer's export acoustic report says every truck entering, and every truck idling while waiting, will exceed the level allowed under SEPP-N1. The noise will be even worse due to idling refrigerated trucks running a freezer and engine.

The acoustic report author, is satisfied it is entirely acceptable, from 7 am, 6 days a week, to have four trucks an hour, to drive in and idle, under the windows of the Roi apartments. Entirely acceptable, despite the fact every one of these delivery/garbage trucks, whether idling or driving or loading will exceed the permitted noise levels.

Diesel fumes are a known carcinogen. Bik Lane is narrow, so it will take time to naturally disperse diesel fumes on windless days. Four trucks an hour idling will generate a lot of diesel fumes. Apartments beside those idling trucks with air-conditioners on the balcony will draw the diesel fumes into the apartments.

Who will guarantee trucks will not arrive before 7am ? Who will open and close the loading door for each truck  ? Who will stop trucks filling the lane and sitting there idling ? Truck entry should only be off Nicholson Street, or even better yet, don't include a commercial use needing large trucks to visit every day.

There was no expert evidence included in the application to explain how the health, safety and quality of life for the residents of the Roi apartments is enhanced by diesel fumes and truck noise belching in their window 6 days a week.

SomePlanning Scheme references :

SECTION 15 BUILT ENVIRONMENT AND HERITAGE

Land use and development planning must support the development and maintenance of
communities with adequate and safe physical and social environments for their residents,
through the appropriate location of uses and development and quality of urban design.


Planning should achieve high quality urban design and architecture that:

  • Contributes positively to local urban character and sense of place.
  • Reflects the particular characteristics, aspirations and cultural identity of the community.
  • Enhances liveability, diversity, amenity and safety of the public realm.
  • Promotes attractiveness of towns and cities within broader strategic contexts.
  • Minimises detrimental impact on neighbouring properties.

58.04-3 Noise impacts objectives

To contain noise sources in developments that may affect existing dwellings

Clause 21.04 - Objective 3 

To reduce potential amenity conflicts between residential and other uses.
Strategy 3.1 Ensure new residential development in the Mixed Use, Business 1, Business 2, and Business 5 Zones and near Industrial and Business Zones is designed to minimise the potential negative amenity impacts of existing non-residential uses in the vicinity.

Clause 15.01-4 Objective 

To improve community safety and encourage neighbourhood design that makes people feel safe.


22.07-2 Development Abutting Laneways - Objetcives

1. To provide an environment which has a feeling of safety for users of the laneway.
2. To ensure that development along a laneway acknowledges the unique character of the laneway.
3. To ensure that where development is accessed off a laneway, all services can be provided to the development.
4. To ensure that development along a laneway is provided with safe pedestrian and vehicular access


22.07-3 Development Abutting Laneways - Policy
1. Pedestrian entries be separate from vehicle entries
2. Vehicle access be provided to ensure ingress and egress does not require multiple vehicular movements.
3. Windows and balconies overlook laneways but do not unreasonably overlook private open space or habitable rooms on the opposite side of the laneway.
4. Development respect the scale of the surrounding built form
5. Development not obstruct existing access to other properties in the laneway.

32.04 Mixed Use Zone - Amenity of the neighbourhood

The use of land for an industry, service station or warehouse must not adversely affect the amenity of the neighbourhood, including through:

  • The transport of materials or goods to or from the land.
  • The appearance of any stored materials or goods.
  • Traffic generated by the use.
  • Emissions from the land.

2. Neighbourhood character - Public Realm impact

VCAT members have found the concept of a building being a “comfortable companion to the other assets that are characteristic of the area” to be a good guide in evaluating whether something ‘respects’ neighbourhood character. (Judge Gibson)

Plan 2050 does call for an increase in density, but not at the expense of livability. The city of Yarra does support more commercial outcomes. Both the state and local government have policies to retain and enhance what makes Melbourne and Yarra, unique and desirable as we increase density.

Melbourne must retain and enhance its streetscapes, heritage, green open space and livability. Approving a development double the height supported by orderly planning, a single massed tower with no gaps to the sky, total site coverage, with extensive shadowing  of the public realm, would establish a nasty precedent for North Fitzroy, Clifton Hill and North Carlton.

Height

42.6 metres is double the height of the tallest buildings in the area. It is more than four times the height of the neighbouring heritage buildings. At 42 metres it is also more than double the height 18-21m, allowed for strategic development sites, and this is _not_ a strategic development site.

Neighbourhood character

The Yarra Planning Scheme, supports “low-rise urban form”, and buildings of up to 5-6 storeys if they are on strategic redevelopment sites or within major activity centres. This site is not an identified strategic development site, it sits on the edge of a neighbourhood activity centre, not a major activity centre.

The proposed building is completely out of scale with the neighbourhood, especially the adjoining heritage buildings. It does not include setbacks on any boundary. This is a new development - it should be setback from the boundary. The proposed height and massing the building does not sit comfortably, respectfully, among its neighbours.

Shadowing Neighbours

The excessive building height will cause increased shadow to the tiny balcony private open space, as well as reduced natural light to the living rooms, for a number of apartments in the two neighbouring apartment complexes to the east and south of the proposed development.

Shadowing the Street

Nicholson Street will be completely in shadow on both sides of the street through the morning peak hour until the opposite footpath receives its first sunlight by 10am.

Planning Scheme references :

21.05-1 Built Form Heritage  - Objective 14

To protect and enhance Yarra's heritage places.

Strategy 14.3 Protect the heritage skyline of heritage precincts.

Strategy 14.6 ​Protect buildings, streetscapes and precincts of heritage significance from
the visual intrusion of built form both within places and from adjoining areas.

21.05-1 Built Form - Urban Design  - Objective 17

To retain Yarra’s identity as a low-rise urban form with pockets of higher development.


Strategy 17.1 ​Ensure that development outside activity centres and not on Strategic Redevelopment Sites reflects the prevailing low-rise urban form.


Strategy 17.2 ​Development on strategic redevelopment sites or within activity centres should generally be no more than 5-6 storeys unless it can be demonstrated that the proposal can achieve specific benefits such as ​:

I.Significant upper level setbacks
II. Architectural design excellence
III. Best practice environmental sustainability objectives in design and construction
IV. High quality restoration and adaptive re-use of heritage buildings
V. Positive contribution to the enhancement of the public domain
VI. Provision of affordable housing

21.05-1 Built Form - Urban Design  - Objective 18

To retain, enhance and extend Yarra’s fine grain street pattern.

Strategy 18.1 Encourage the re-establishment of streets and laneways through new development sites where such links were part of the historic street pattern,except where this will cause detrimental traffic impacts.


Strategy 18.2 Enhance the amenity of laneways by applying the Development Abutting Laneway policy at Clause 22.07.

Clause 55.02-1 Objectives

To ensure that the design respects the existing neighbourhood character or contributes to a preferred
neighbourhood character.

Standard B1

The design response must be appropriate to the neighbourhood and the site.
The proposed design must respect the existing or preferred neighbourhood character and respond
to the features of the site.


Gasworks Decision Is In

Major Improvement on Original Proposal 

 10 Storey Maximum - 20% Affordable Housing  

The Minister's decision on the Gasworks site is "in". Mr Richard Wynne has announced a positive Gasworks outcome for the community. It includes a 10 storey maximum height. 20% affordable/social housing, a new combined Year 11&12 campus for Collingwood College and Fitzroy High, and an indoor sports stadium with community rooms.

The Development Victoria Project page Updated to reflect Minister Richard Wynne's decision is here http://www.development.vic.gov.au/projects/fitzroy

Collingwood and Fitzroy combine classes to offer The full range of VCE/VCAL Year 11 & 12 curriculum, but this currently means students often travel to classes at both campuses, on the same day. Having all classes on the same campus means more time learning and less time travelling, as well as freeing up space at Fitzroy and Collingwood for more students.

The community should be proud that their efforts appear to have had a very significant effect.

5 Storey street wall maximum along Smith St, 6 along Queens Parade and George St with 10 storey street wall permitted only along Alexander Parade.

There are also provisions, in line with community concerns and expert advice, to provide for sight lines through the site, a more human-scale experience within the site, break-up of outline in more distant views, and so on.

Issues with car parking provision have been taken on board, bike parking is now 2 spaces. Dwelling, sustainability and housing diversity are now more explicit in the controls. Parking, water, waste are required to be planned in an integrated way across the whole site etc.

It's an example of people getting involved in an official process and getting a much more positive outcome than was originally floated. Props to the panel members for being fair and thorough, and to the decision-maker(s) for taking broader concerns into account.

One thing a bit "hmm" is the section on social and affordable housing. The panel recommended this be a minimum of 15% in the control - agreed to by Yarra and DV. However, in the gazetted control the phrasing is "up to 20%", which seems odd, so is possibly a drafting error.

You can click thru to the approved planning controls downloaded here. 

Click thru to the state planning webpage with all the documents, including the GLSAC panel report. 

Finally It Over !!

26 - 56 Queens Parade

Final VCAT Decision Published

The bottom line is that Gurner gets a permit to build at the maximum of 10 storeys stated in the DDO, but with a massing and footprint that's been vastly scaled back at each stage of the process.

The original plans were massive and bulky at 16 storeys and 476 apartments. The plans now stand at 10 storeys and 263 apartments (and if you read the tribunal's finding, are likely to reduce a little further). So, a bit over half the original size.

But there's more - heritage that would have been destroyed is now to be protected. Along the way the original architects were ditched and the whole thing redesigned. The apartments must now be more liveable. The residents will now have much better open space.

That couldn't have happened without the efforts of the same amazing community that also put up such a good showing at the Gasworks panel hearing. I'm in awe of you all, and no poor thanks of mine would ever be adequate.

Here is the link to the final decision made this July 2018 - nearly 2 years after the original plans were advertised.

This was a really long haul for us all. The VCAT members were extremely thorough for their part - including returning to site one last time to "fact-check". If you read the decision you'll see what I meant in my earlier post that calling this hearing was something of an "own goal" for the applicant.

Aside from a stellar community effort, Yarra Council, the councillors and the council officers really put in the big ones on this. Kudos to them.

For all of those who contributed just know that this case has had lasting effects beyond our area - other community groups with their own mountains to climb learn from each other's example, including ours.

You've certainly made a difference. Thanks again.

Save Queens Parade are leading the fight on 201-215 Queens Parade.

The huge development previously proposed to fill the sky behind the Art Deco (former) Clifton Motors, is back.

It has been re-submitted with even higher density plans.

The former Clifton's Motors was designed by the same Architect who also built the United Kingdom Hotel (now McDonalds) and The Shrine of Rememberence.

Save Queens Parade have put out the call to the community to please consider putting in an objection. The matter will not be decided before the end of June, so there is at least a week to submit yours.

Link to City Of Yarra's webpage for this application :  Click thru Here

26-56 Queens Parade - VCAT Hearing - Thursday 7th June

In Summary - Own Goal - The Developer

Why were we here ? We were here because the developer, represented by Mr Jeremy Gobbo, requested a hearing to dispute a number of council's submitted conditions. As the party who requested the hearing, the applicant had to provide, a week in advance, their points of dispute.

As the barrister representing the responsible authority, Ms Susan Brennan went first. Susan, and her team, had made very good use of the previous week, to prepare their case. These were the five narrow areas of legitimate dispute, this is the council's position on each, each is supported by the following evidence, grounded in the following text from the interim decision.

Basically I had just witnessed a one hour master class for planning barristers.

That was pretty much it.

The residents took less than ten minutes to fully support the council's position.

Jeremy then spoke for about an hour before and another hour after lunch, but it seemed to me his heart wasn't in it, because Susan had already covered off all his issues in her presentation.

In closing Senior Member Code mentioned this case had more paperwork than any he had been part of in his whole career at VCAT. Three trolleys worth. I remember thinking this probably was not the record we wanted to break in our first encounter with VCAT. Unusually for this case - the day finished early.

Then we all went home to await the panel's decision.

Community Town Hall Meeting

Well Done to the over 200 community members who attended and contributed so generously.

The meeting covered the Development Victoria proposal, the workshopped a bunch of excellent resolutions from the community.

These community resolutions formed the centrepiece of the Protect Fitzroy North submission and presentation to the Advisory Committee Public Hearing.

The former Fitzroy Gasworks is the largest development site in Fitzroy North/Clifton Hill, and represents the last opportunity to introduce major new public infrastructure to our community.

The Gasworks development, on its own, will increase the population of North Fitzroy by 14%, (Needs Analysis).

This is a once in a generation opportunity for the state government to deliver an exemplar in this community, after rejecting this high density horror.

City Of Yarra Officer for Gasworks : Michael.Ballock@yarracity.vic.gov.au  

Click Thru to Community Commissioned Expert Report

Heaps More Information  : Click thru to the PFN GASWORKS Page 

26-56 Queens Parade - New Plans

Gurner’s fourth complete set of revised plans for 26-25 Queens Parade has been reviewed by council.

Protect Fitzroy North as an organisation, as well as a number of residents have made submissions.

Link to the (frankly brilliant) council officers submission to VCAT on the March 2018 plans.

https://www.yarracity.vic.gov.au/-/media/files/council-meetings/2018-idac-meetings/20180328-idac-minutes.pdf?la=en&hash=1CFF244A881C8DFE7A2E3E0245F0995B0C3B114A

The developer's lawyers want a hearing to try and get the council's conditions watered down.

Link to the Council Webpage for 26-56 Queens Parade Plans - All four sets, including March 2018

https://www.yarracity.vic.gov.au/services/planning-and-development/planning-applications/advertised-planning-applications/2017/06/20/pln160434

A link to the VCAT Decision which rejects the development unless a number of changes are made is next. The list of required changes is on pages 44-46, from paragraph 207 onwards.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8cZileKwitoNjFnR05ZMWVSN0VTRjd1a1ltOGdxZTRpQ2hF/view?usp=sharing

Transdev/PTV Toxic SprayBooth

Patsy and the No Toxins crew - Won !! - Transdev withdrew their plans for the spray booth on Scotchmer St. Many thanks to all who put in objections, displayed the poster, the councillors and council officers. It is a big relief for all the residents near Nicholson Village.

Piedemontes - Update

** Plans have been rumoured Withdrawn **

The hundreds of objections and the petition to protest the acquisition have been taken on board by the Piedemontes family.

Aquiring a laneway relied on by a number of people and businesses is difficult.

Rumour has it the Piedemontes Family is withdrawing.

This has not been confirmed officially so cannot be relied upon - apologies for previous post.

The resident's group front and centre on ensuring the community's views are respected are Fitzroy North Residents Action Group.

This group includes a strong presence of the residents who live in the streets around Piedemontes.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/piedimontes.going.too.far/

Email:  FitzroyNorth.champions@gmail.com

M41 Pipeline

Works Commencing March 5th - Information Sessions Scheduled

Email Update from Melbourne Water on the M41 Pipeline Page (link above)

Official Melbourne Water Page https://yoursay.melbournewater.com.au/m41

** Piedimontes Update **

520 Objections !!

Wow over 500 objections is a mighty statement on the proposed plans from the community.

Permit number: PLN17/068

Queens Parade

Council Endorses Controls

In an ultra marathon Council Meeting, Yarra council endorses planning controls for all of Queens Parade..

.. where they intend to request the Planning Minister bring them in as interim controls while a planning panel sits on permanent controls for the entire precinct sometime in the new year.

This was a controversial item on the night - not because anyone there didn't want planning controls for Queens Parade but because many felt these controls don't go far enough. Concerns were also raised about the community only having a day or two to review hundreds of pages of dense material.

That aside, it's a large and detailed piece of work from the council officers and consultants which all agreed has many welcome elements aimed at protecting Queens Parade and surrounds.

In particular, little residential areas and heritage buildings including the Victorian terraces across from Fitzroy pool that were victims of incorrect zoning will now be better protected.

However, it also allows for very significant development, and predictably the concern from the community centres around where the balance between permitting and moderating development has ended up.

This isn't the last word - the main opportunity for community input will be at the planning panel on this next year. And we'll be there to make our case.

Links to the City of Yarra downloads for the Queens Parade Controls and supporting strategic reports.

Heritage Report Download
Queens Parade Controls
Town Planning Report

~ ~

Sat 25th - Ward Meeting - Level 2 - New Library

Fabulous turn out of residents at very short notice to the Ward Meeting at the new library.

The new library name was living up to its name as our ward Councillors explained Bargoonga Nganjin means ‘Gather Everybody’ in Woiwurrung, the language of the Wurundjeri people, as part of opening the meeting.

The hot topic was planning and the Piedimonte's proposal.

Sam and Joe Piedimonte spoke of their family's journey with the community for over 50 years

The community members expressed how much they loved shopping at their supermarket, and how devastated they would be to loose the local village shopping experience.

The residents, including many local architects, expressed very strong reservations about key aspects of the design, in detail.

Sam, Joe and the expert residents started a dialogue on how the expansion could be re-imagined to still keep what the community loves about Piedimontes and the North Fitzroy village, the neighbouring residents amenity is respected, while ensuring the supermarket business has a solid platform to thrive for many years to come. 

Jackie Fristacky asked for a big thank-you to be passed on to all the community who attended, and an extra thank-you to all those who helped with the set up, then stayed and put the room back to is normal layout.

** VCAT - Interim Decision - April **

VCAT has agreed to the developer's time frame to submit new plans - They are now due 28th February.

The council and the residents will get 4 weeks to review the new plans with accompanying list of changes.

VCAT may schedule a short hearing to allow parties to be heard - only on the changes - in early April

My 2c says this will happen because the mandated design changes are significant.
 
Apologies for the formal wording in this news entry - but the VCAT case is not yet decided.

VCAT have handed down a decision - but an interim decision rather than a final decision.

This means that in the judgement of the VCAT members :

There are significant issues with the developer's plans presented at the VCAT hearing that can't be addressed through permit conditions.
.. but ..
Those issues are not so great as to require a complete transformation in order to reach an acceptable outcome.

Therefore the applicant - Gurner(tm) is invited to submit a further set of plans, addressing the issues identified by VCAT.

Gurner(tm) has elected to submit revised plans by the end of February, the time for parties to VCAT ( residents and council), to review those plans has not been announced.

The further hearing on the compliance of revised plans to the VCAT interim order has not been scheduled.

If the developer's plans meet the letter of the requested design changes - but as a whole still do not constitute an acceptable outcome - the plans can stillbe refused by VCAT.

The VCAT interim decision is nearly 50 pages long.

Click on the Link To VCAT Decision button below to see the full decision text.

Gurner(tm) have until the 13th November to notify the Tribunal they will prepare amended plans in accordance with
the changes in the order, along with the date the plans will be ready.

We'll have more to say as the story continues to unfold

The following extract is paragraph 17 titled Main Finding in the Interim Decision.

Our main finding is that although the scheme supports a substantial
development of the main site and a small but relatively intense development
of the rear site, the plans for each site are not a satisfactory response to the
relevant provisions of the scheme. Changes to the design response for both
sites are necessary. We are unable to frame appropriate conditions for a
permit for either site because of the nature of the changes. We
acknowledge the validity of the underlying design thesis and we are
therefore prepared to give the applicant an opportunity to prepare further
amendments to the plans for both sites.

 Extra big thank-you to Chris Sanders and Marion Marshall

Chris Sanders of Zen Folio photography http://christophersanders.zenfolio.com/, produced a range of brilliant pictures on a tight deadline to illustrate our case.

Marion Marshall, of Marion Marshall Studios http://www.marionmarshallstudios.com.au/, curated our wonderful book of images, referenced by the Protect Fitzroy North presenters.

Both Chris and Marion stepped up to produce just what was needed, to a really tight deadline, without any fuss at all, so thank-you for adding such a professional finish to our presentations.

The Panel acknowledged the strong community presence across the full 10 days of the completed hearing.

We are not expecting for a decision to be handed down before the end of October.

A Massive Thank-You to all who attended.

OUR COUNCIL HAS PRESENTED BRILLIANTLY

Our Resident presentations all went VERY weLL

Submissions were presented to the panel on Parking, Traffic, Planning, Heritage, Amenity, Neighbourhood Character, Net Community Benefit and Urban Design.

Here is a small sample of the 23 page Submission prepared and presented by the Neighbourhood Character Think Tank

The lack of empathy of the development proposal for the existing or preferred neighbourhood character demonstrates a complete lack of understanding of, and a lack of empathy for, the existing community in North Fitzroy.

It is an outward-facing neighbourhood, with a genuine and strong sense of openness and community that has a long history of banding together.

The residents of North Fitzroy generally enjoy small private open spaces, but are afforded the luxury of large, accommodating and welcoming public open spaces and it is in those public open spaces that locals relax, walk their dogs or congregate with their friends in the neighbourhood and visitors from all over Melbourne.

North Fitzroy is a neighbourhood rich in human interaction that has a true spirit of place, where a diverse range of people come together to engage in all manner of activities.

The design of the development is inherently inwards looking.

In particular, the townhouses around parts of the boundary of the site open inwards rather than onto the street.

This is in sharp contrast to the neighbourhood more generally, where houses have small front yards and generally present an open face to others who live in and visit the area.

We query where the opportunities are for residents of this development to interact “by chance” with their community, in the context of a design that offers little in the way of interaction with the wider community.

Other than a small section of the Queens Parade edge of the development, close to the commercial premises, it is closed to all but those who live there, and will present a blank face to the broader community in which it sits.

When our community stANDS as one we Are mighty

New Plans - New Architect - Same Problem

** STILL TOO BIG ** Our Councillors agree **

Newsflash from IDAC - Yarra councillors unanimously to_reject_ the revised plans for 26-56 Queens Parade.

A Massive Thank-you to each and every one who made  the treck to Richmond Town Hall.

It was a marathon sitting, and the developer was there to see the communities commitment in person. 

Yarra council to stand shoulder to shoulder with residents at VCAT. It's worth noting and commending the amazing focus the Yarra councillors have given appropriate development of this precinct - a series of council actions and votes have occurred to get us to this point and at every single one the councillors have supported and worked hard for their community.

Thanks particularly to Councillors Misha Coleman, Danae Bosler and Daniel Nguyen for officiating at a particularly challenging IDAC meeting.

Councillors, council officers and residents alike all had the stresses of shortened timeframes to meet the VCAT schedule. On the upside, there is now sufficient time between now and VCAT for Yarra to prepare an effective case.

Community concern has been been expressed in the heartfelt efforts of over 470 objectors.

Over 98 paid up personally to stand before VCAT in support of retaining neighbourhood character and amenity.

The picture below is the South Elevation from the plans supplied to VCAT. A red line is added to highlight the outline of the whole building proposed, as only the front section of three of the towers has been drawn in with any detail.

The link to the VCAT Substituted Plans July 2017 are on the council website, link is below.

When our community stands as one we are Mighty

Announced - M41 Pipeline - Community Information Sessions

10th August - 4pm to 8pm - Fitzroy Town Hall
12th August - 11am to 3pm - Bargoonga Nganjin (New North Fitzroy Library)

Official Melbourne Water's Commmunity Page with more details Click Here

Our M41 Pipeline page - With Details provided to PFN so far .. Click Here

Tim Gurner addressed the Nation - the Chaser responded

Tim Gurner was featured on 60 Minutes, and on a follow-up radio spot on Raph Epstein's show on 774 Radio Melbourne.

The Chaser's Responses

There are heaps of links to the heaps of articles, radio, etc on the PFN facebook page. My guess is Tim got what he wanted as his profile would definitely be higher now among Sydney siders with the serious cash required to buy his real-estate.

PFN Facebook page

You do not have to have a facebook account to view the page. You only need to create a facebook account if you want to add your own comments.  

Grande Grazie to 1889 Cucina Povera

"A big thank you to Laura and Paul for supporting Protect Fitzroy North Inc with an array of delicious pizzas for our volunteer thank you night! "

http://www.1889cucinapovera.com.au/ and on facebook  https://www.facebook.com/1889cucinapovera

VCAT on Monday, April 3 - Postponed until September 4

Protect Fitzroy North attended the Practice Hearing today before Helen Gibson, Deputy President of VCAT.

At the hearing it was Deputy President Gibson's decision the applicant (Gurner(tm)) needed time to consider the new DDO and produce a new set of amended plans.

The new hearing is scheduled for the 4th September 2017 for 10 days instead of the anticipated 7 days. This has cost implications for barrister and VCAT expert fees.

The controls in the DDO were confirmed as the controls the new design will be assessed against. Deputy Gibson directed the plans can be completely different in design and the degree of change cannot be challenged as being transformative.

Usually the applicant can't completely change the plans - transform them. Transformed plans normally go back through the council process, but normally a DDO for the area including the site is not gazzetted between the first Practice Hearing and the start of the Final Hearing.

The new plans will be presented to the council and the other parties at VCAT 30 business days ahead of the hearing, landing mid July. They will be published, along with any supporting documentation, for public consumption on the Council website.

Well we have reached the end of Round One - still standing - still full of gumption - due to wonderful support.
The mountain of work put in by our Think-Tanks is by no means wasted. The work done and the skills aquired will be the foundation and more for our case in September.
As the case did not proceed, most of the funding from the community is still there to put toward round two.

We all get a bit of a break now - which is well deserved all round :-)

Protect Fitzroy North Inc.

When our community stands as one, we are mighty

Its Official - We Have a DDO on 26-56 Queens Parade

Our local member Richard Wynne has come through with an Interim DDO, which takes effect immediately.

A DDO to articulate the City Of Yarra's urban design objectives for the precinct, including heritage, amenity, and sustainability has been on the City Of Yarra planning priority to do list since 2008.

This developemnt application just made formalising and presenting the prefered controls to the State Governemnt urgent.

This is HUGE for our case at VCAT

Many Thanks to Mr Wynne, his department, our councillors and council officers who have done a mountain of work to get this up in time.

Last and by absolutely no means least, you know who you are, our wonderful cohort of letter and email writing legends, vox pops voices, twitter banner models, and passionate community members who have personally stood up to be counted on this.

The finish line is still a way off, but we can see it now, and the view is _alot_ less daunting.

The DDO sets a maximum height limit - 31m (10 storeys) where previously there was no limit.
So straight off the top two floors - gone!
Then reading a bit further, maximum street frontage 9m (3 storeys) - in the current plans - 11 storeys straigh up - gone!

In the words of the super salesman Tim Shaw - But wait there's more!

  1. Minimum setback of 8m for the upper-level apartments above the heritage K G Luke facade. This is great - it means the Art Deco crenellations (new word for me too) on the parapet can be still seen against the sky.
  2. The Art Deco facade has to be restored properly and incorporated into the fabric of the new building, not left as a petrified building skeleton tacked on the outside.
  3. There must be significant gaps in the building to allow distant views, eg. to see gaps right through the site from the Grandstand. No massed monolith architecture allowed.
  4. And ... there ... is ... still ... more ... lots .... more ...

Press the button below for your very own copy of the full nine pages of the official DDO

Comment from Steve Jolly, Socialist City Of Yarra Councillor for Langridge, on our Facebook Page

Originally the developer wanted 16 stories. Your well-organised community campaign has led to significant changes. Well done

Yarra Mayor, Councillor Amanda Stone on the City Of Yarra website is quoted.

“Maintaining Yarra’s liveability and protecting neighbourhood character, especially in our heritage precincts, is a priority for Council.

“Our community has told us that they are not opposed to increased housing density in appropriate locations, as long as new developments respect the local area. The 16 storey development that was originally proposed for this site clearly did not meet the expectations of Council or the community.

“We encourage developers to engage with residents early in the planning process, particularly if planning a large development that will impact people. A development site is not a blank canvas, it needs to respect and respond to the surrounding neighbourhood. Having a genuine conversation with local residents early on could help avoid costly and time consuming VCAT hearings down the track,”

The City of Yarra Official Announcement of the DDO on their website : Link Here

Clay Lucas Article on the Announcement in The Age. Link to Article

When our community stands as one, we are mighty.

Beautiful Article

In The Age on Tuesday 21st March by our very own Bill Robb. Here is a link

Top of the Pops Vox Pops

Our talented reporters were up and about asking some big questions at the Trivia Night. As always our forthright community members were up to the challenge.

Why is it important to Protect Fitzroy North ?

What does 'appropriate development' mean to you ?

If you could say one thing to Minister Wynne...

Take a Bow North Fitzroy

Our Community Trivia Extravaganza on 4th March was a Great Night and a Financial Success

Mega Trivia Quiz 4 March 2017 Raffle Winners

Raffle 1

1st prize: $300 voucher from Emma Whiting Travel plus wine & chocolate - Jamie Croft
2nd Prize: Tutti I Sapori Voucher, wine & chocolate - Julie Heidelberger
3rd Prize: Meal Voucher plus wine & chocolate - Melissa Marino

Raffle 2

1st prize $550 - Table 2 - Rod Harris’ Table - money donated back to PFN Inc
2nd prize $330 - Table 3 - Marianne Van Leeuwen’s Table - money donated back to PFN Inc
3rd prize $220 - Table 23 - Steve Richardson’s Table - money donated back to PFN Inc

Local Legends who made the Night a Success

The star attractions of our silent and (very) loud auctions.

Vintage Linens & Collectables 519 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy North
Magic Muesli magicmuesli.com.au
Vinomofo Level 2/6 Palmer Parade, Cremorne
Bosisto's PO Box 74,Oakleigh South 3167
Blackhearts & Sparrows 119 Scotchmer Street, North Fitzroy
Piedimontes Supermarket 37/49 Best St, Fitzroy North
The Gorgeous Tea Co. www.thegorgeousteacompany.com
Cone 11 www.cone11.com.au
Russell Badham APW International 40 View St, Alphington
Childplay 151 Queens Parade, Clifton Hill
Curves Gym 278 St Georges Road, Fitzroy North
Tiger & Peacock 187 St Georges Road, Fitzroy North
Brunswick Street Gallery 322 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy
Imogene Antique & Contemporary Jewellery 410 Queens Parade, Clifton Hill
Masino Hair & Beauty 320 Park Street, Carlton North
Merriville Home 224 St Georges Road, Fitzroy North
Mitte 76 Michael Street, Fitzroy North
North Fitzroy Arms 296 Rae Street, Fitzroy North
The Food Repository 346 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy
Marion Marshall Studios 55 Scotchmer Street, Fitzroy North
Pet Art 78 Scotchmer Street, Fitzroy North
Fitzroy Programs (creators of Fitzroy Readers) 593 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy North
2K labware homewares www.2klabware.com.au
Two:Bob café 270 Queens Parade, Fitzroy North
Mayford Wines 6815 Great Alpine Road, Porepunkah
Coquette Rear of 336 Queens Parade, Fitzroy North
Fitzroy Veterinary Hospital 113-115 Scotchmer Street, Fitzroy North
Dance of Life – Yoga and Healing 250 George Street, Fitzroy
Best Street Store 31-33 Best Street, Fitzroy North
Aphro and Wolfe Café 566 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy North
Gregory's Antiques and Lights 147 St Georges Road, Fitzroy North
Rediscover Ease Alexander Technique 2/284 St Georges Rd, Fitzroy North
Obelix & Co 217 St Georges Road, Fitzroy North
Mesop 628-632 Smith Street, Clifton Hill
Moppit Children’s Lifestyle Store 312 Queens Parade, Fitzroy North
Terrace Gardens Florist 338 Queens Parade, Fitzroy North
Cliftons Retravision 141 Queens Parade, Clifton Hill
Bean Around (formerly Degani) 350 Queens Parade, Fitzroy North
Village Vineyard 348 Queens Parade, Fitzroy North
Mecca Bros Fruit City 322 Queens Parade, Fitzroy North
Butcher’s Block 280 Queens Parade, Fitzroy North
Frootz on Parade 274 Queens Parade, Fitzroy North
McCoppins Supermarket 292 Queens Parade, Fitzroy North
Cellini Workshop 314 Queens Parade, North Fitzroy
Emma Whiting Travel 1/169 Queens Parade, Clifton Hill
Asaf Nagar Tennis Coaching Edinburgh Gardens, Fitzroy North
The Running Company 175 Queens Parade, Clifton Hill
Key Ingredients 171 Queens Parade, Clifton Hill
Tutti I Sapori Restaurant 398 Queens Parade, North Fitzroy
The Lord Newry Hotel243 Brunswick Street, North Fitzroy
North Fitzroy Arms Hotel 296 Rae St, Fitzroy North

Why are we fighting this again ?

In 2003, an independent panel of top planning experts from Panels Victoria, thoroughly reviewed a development application on this site, and approved the 172 apartment, 5 storey solution submitted by the owner.

Now after 13 years of doing nothing the same owner is back, with a new developer, and a new totally inappropriate application.

Why do reasonable residents who have been through it once, have to go through it again?

Put yourself in our position, think of the hassle of the first time around, think why is it on again ?

Why, because the fight is worth having, because Fitzroy North is worth protecting

Our Facebook group is Protect Fitzroy North, our Twitter feed is @ProtectFitzNth #TooBig2ignore

Our Contact Page is a click away in the Menu above, it sends your message to protectfizroynorth@gmail.com

Our Postal Address is Protect Fitzroy North Inc.
PO Box 1076, Fitzroy North, Vic 3068.

Videos of the speakers at our Public Meeting, including Professor Michael Buxton, are on our youtube page https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCCbwtdjdEHRAGIGM9C3omAw 

A response to some ill informed comment in The Age, The Australian, The Australian Financial Review, and various developement industry media is in  Response To Opinion under the In The News page in the menu above

FRIENDS AND SUPPORTERS 

The Lord Newry Hotel            243 Brunswick Street, North Fitzroy   http://www.lordnewryhotel.com.au/

North Fitzroy Arms Hotel      296 Rae St, Fitzroy North                          http://www.northfitzroyarms.com.au/