It is a bit like being asked whether you would prefer your house to be broken into or your car to be stolen. Obviously neither but when we nominate the least worst option they can say we asked for it. The same applies with these proposed concessions, just to get the public amenity benefit that Hunters Hill Council should have coded into the Gladesville Shopping Village (GSV) site when it rezoned it in 2012 for windfall gains to the owner, allowing them to put 10 storeys and 180 flats on the site.
Lane Cove Council planned for their area and delivered ‘The Canopy’. Hunters Hill Council just rezoned to dump all the extra flats on the GSV site, failed to heritage list the timber cottage at 10 Cowell Street, and disposed of it (without public consultation or tender) to the owner of GSV and carried on as if their job in ‘planning’ was done.
That said, the Master Plan, and these block plans, are an improvement in transparency and public participation from how Hunters Hill Council acted in 2012 and 2013. You can review our last comments on that history at this link http://au.gladesvillecommunity.com/2021/08/08/block-plans-on-exhibition/. We appreciate that the improvement commenced 3 & 1/2 years ago with the change of Council and the motion to develop a new Master Plan was moved by Councillors Zac Miles and Ross Williams.
Submissions are due by 10 September 2021. We encourage you to make your own submission to Council regarding the Block Plans. You can do that by sending an email to customerservice@huntershill.
We also encourage you to register for a session to see what Council has to say about the process. You can do that at this link: https://www.huntershill.nsw.gov.au/events/gladesville-masterplan-community-meetings/. The sessions may be helpful or they may be too heavy on spin, having watched Hunters Hill Council try repeatedly since 2013 to tell us what we want.
Hunters Hill Council has not obtained or at least not shown to us any traffic or parking study, which should inform development. We anticipate that when GSV is redeveloped there will be 18 months to 2 years when parking on that site is lost and construction workers will take up most of the remaining parking in Gladesville. That will leave no parking for staff of businesses, shoppers, or other visitors. It is quite foreseeable but there is no plan to manage the problem! Pity the businesses who need trade, with 2 years of severe disruption.
Below are our suggestions of points that you might like to consider including in your submission to the block plans being exhibited. You are welcome to copy any or all that you agree with, or modify the points, or put our own points forward. As always, we are not trying to tell you what to think. We are just trying to help focus on some points that we think are important and encouraging you to BE HEARD!
Below, FSR refers to Floor Space Ratio, the measure for bulk. More FSR means more flats (and/or commercial space, but most of this development is about building more flats).
Below, LEP refers to a Local Environmental Plan which contains the 1) Height and 2) FSR controls that apply to each parcel of land in the municipality.
Links to block plans on HHC website: https://www.huntershill.nsw.gov.au/gladesville/
Block 4 Gladesville Shopping Village
1) There should be absolutely no increase in FSR contemplated on Block 4, the GSV site. The site has already been re-zoned generously to the owner by Hunters Hill Council in the 2012 Local Environmental Plan (LEP). It is a profitable site as it is, and the rezoning should have included minimum open space requirements for public amenity.
2) With NO increase to FSR, an increase to height may be tolerable to permit better design through rearrangement of height on the site and the creation of open public space. Any increase in height must accompany significant public amenity benefit, and it should only permit rearrangement of height and NOT bulk increase. FSR must not be increased.
3) The requirement for open space for public amenity (such as 4,000 square metres) should be written into the planning controls. It should have been done in the 2012 LEP. It should be written into the planning controls now, as exhibited in the block plans.
4) The Height control could be increased for the nominated properties on Victoria Road, but only as a bonus if they are consolidated into the GSV site. If they are not consolidated into the GSV site then no increase should be considered. Similarly, properties on Victoria Road, located north and south of the properties that have been nominated to be consolidated into Block 4 could also receive additional Height if they are consolidated into an integrated development, but only if they are consolidated.
5) Gladesville is not served well by public transport and it is expected that cars will continue to be important for arrival and departure. The additional traffic load associated with hundreds more flats in this small space, as well as additional commercial area, must be expected to create traffic problems without a main-road vehicle entry or exit for the GSV site.
6) Public amenity requirements for the GSV site should have been written into the LEP in 2012. The existing controls are already generous to the site owner and minimal concessions should be considered in order to secure public open space for community benefit. It is a shame that we have to try to fit this into the planning controls afterwards instead of Hunters Hill Council doing the job properly in developing the 2012 LEP, and including the timber cottage at 10 Cowell Street for proper heritage listing in the 2012 LEP as it exhibited it in the Draft 2012 LEP, before disposing of 10 Cowell Street and other public land without public consultation or tender.
7) Nominate your preferred layout, from options 1 to 3 or a mix of them, if you have a preference.
1) The public car park at 3A Cowell Street must remain a public car park. The capacity of the car park should be increased to facilitate the growth and development that has already been written into the planning controls for Gladesville. There should be no rezoning of that site to permit height and FSR just so Hunters Hill Council can sell it off in another cash-grab. The rezoning should only occur in a process to construct a larger public car-park.
2) Overall, paying attention to Gladesville in an integrated planning process is a step forward from the apathy shown to Gladesville when the 2012 LEP was developed.
From the Committee of the Gladesville Community Group (incorporated).