As expected, the long awaited Planning Scheme Review, will NOT BE REVIEWING THE RESIDENTIAL ZONES as demanded by so many residents! Nor does the proposed work plan fill us with confidence that the municipality overall will greatly benefit from what is mooted – especially when suggested time frames go out to 4 years down the track. In this first of our posts we simply summarise sections of the suggested work plan and the  stated time for completion.

Structure Plans – Complete first 3 within 4 years. Ongoing, continue with structure plans each taking 1-2 years to complete. (Comment – given that there are 10 Neighbourhood centres – that is a time frame of between 10-20 years!)

Neighbourhood Character Policy – 2 to 3 years.

Heritage Internal Review – 3 to 12 months

Heritage Major Review – 2 to 3 years

Municipal Strategic Statement – 1 to 2 years

Local Planning Policy Review – 2 to 3 years

Development contributions levy – 2 years

Parking Provisions – 3 to 4 years

Open Space – 2 to 3 years

Sustainability Policy – 2 to 3 years

Water Sensitive Urban Design – 2 to 3 years

Transition between zones – 2 to 3 years

Special Building Overlay – 2 to 3 years

Tree Protection Policy – 2-3 years

COMMENT

We acknowledge that due to council’s failure to act on planning issues for the past decade, there is now a huge backlog of work that is required.  Having said that, residents should not be prepared to sit back and wait for another 2 to 3 years for changes to eventuate. The Minister’s directive to start work came in December 2015. Exactly what has council done in the past 8 months? How much money has been set aside in the budget to hire consultants to undertake the necessary work? How much of the upcoming work will remain ‘internal’ and secret – such as this statement from page 106 – Glen Eira has completed its review of the new residential zones. Though some community feedback is calling for Council to review the residential zone boundaries, particularly at ‘transition areas’ where two different residential zones meet, it is prudent to wait for the State Government to release its findings before any decision is made about reviewing our own locations.

And if council is so overwhelmed with the task ahead, then there is always the alternative of pinching what other councils have already successfully introduced into their planning schemes. Tree protection is the perfect example. Why this should take 2 to 3 years is laughable and says much about the underlying intentions of this council and its inept planners and councillors.

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