Thou­sands protest against mas­sive hous­ing es­tate in Mel­bourne

Daily Messenger - - International - SJA Jafri Bureau Chief Aus­tralia

MEL­BOURNE: Hun­dreds of res­i­dents have gath­ered to protest plans for a mas­sive hous­ing es­tate in Mel­bourne’s south-east, claim­ing it will “ruin their sub­urb.”

Kingston Coun­cil re­ceived more than 8000 sub­mis­sions re­gard­ing the pro­posed de­vel­op­ment at Kingswood Golf Club in Din­g­ley Vil­lage – the largest num­ber it has ever re­ceived for a sin­gle ap­pli­ca­tion.

Long-term res­i­dent David Madill, whose house backs onto the golf course, has been one of the most out­spo­ken ob­jec­tors.

“We were given a set of plans and said, 'this is what you're get­ting whether you like it or not,’” Madill toldA Cur­rent Af­fair.

“It's a fail­ure of plan­ning. It's a cul­ture of de­vel­op­ers be­liev­ing that they can come in and do any­thing and then leave.”

Madill is an avid bird watcher, who of­ten spends time in his gar­den feed­ing the many species of birds that nest in the trees that bor­der his prop­erty.

He’s wor­ried that de­spite the de­vel­oper's prom­ise it will plant more trees, the sub­urb will lose its pre­cious wildlife.

“I don't think you can go to many other places and see thirty odd species of birds fly into your back­yard and sit there and watch whilst you do some gar­den­ing,” he said.

“De­spite what the de­vel­oper says, we're go­ing to lose them.”

The land was bought in 2014 by ISPT, on be­half of Aus­tralian Su­per, which has since ap­plied to Kingston Coun­cil to have the land re­zoned from spe­cial use to res­i­den­tial.

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