Last night’s community forum had a good turnout of residents. We estimate that 50+ people attended. Many new ideas were proffered as well as some old perennials – ie community gardens; tree register and protection, traffic, etc.

Whilst there are undoubtedly time limits and such meetings cannot go on all night, we were very surprised by the fact that Theme 1 of the Discussion Paper (ie the Municipal Strategic Statement (MSS)and all council’s Local Policies) did not get a guernsy. In fact, the ‘discussion’ went immediately to Theme 2. Given that the MSS is arguably Council’s most significant document since it sets the framework for all land use together with the Local Policies, and has not had a revamp for well over a decade, it is disappointing that residents were not provided with the opportunity to voice their views on this important component of the planning scheme. It should also be noted that only two councillors were in attendance – Sounness and Lobo.

Below is a ‘snapshot’ summarising the feedback on the Environmental Sustainable Design theme as it went up on the overhead projector. (apologies for the poor quality!)

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A sample of the other feedback provided throughout the evening was:

  • Review Urban Design for Racecourse, Caulfield Station, Monash Uni
  • Rubbish bins on roads
  • More family sized apartments
  • Open space levy increase to purchase land
  • More permeable surfaces for footpaths
  • One way streets to reduce congestion
  • All new dwellings to have solar power and green roofs
  • Significant tree register
  • Increased permeability for developments via schedules
  • Population density has impact on resources
  • Bicycles for short distance travel

Opening comments from some residents were also informative –

  • Heritage Update 2002 is not part of the Planning Scheme and that’s why VCAT does not have to consider it.
  • What is the capacity of population growth for Glen Eira and what does this say about density and all that follows from this?
  • As one commentator has said in our previous post, residents appeared to favour a 4 storey height limit for commercial dwellings/zonings.
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