City’s block buster

Wanneroo Times - - Front Page - Lucy Jarvis

WAN­NEROO Coun­cil has re­fused to ini­ti­ate a re­zon­ing amend­ment that could al­low for de­vel­op­ment of a re­tire­ment com­plex near the town­site.

The pro­posed amend­ment re­lated to four ad­join­ing blocks on Dun­de­bar Road and Bel­grade Road, which own­ers hoped to sell to an aged care provider that planned to build a re­tire­ment com­plex on the 8ha site.

Dur­ing a con­fi­den­tial ses­sion, the coun­cil noted that the City’s plan­ning and sus­tain­abil­ity di­rec­tor had not reached an agree­ment with the ap­pli­cants and de­cided it did not sup­port their vol­un­tary con­tri­bu­tion of­fer.

It re­fused to ini­ti­ate the amend­ment 163 to District Plan­ning Scheme 2, say­ing the pro­posed ad­di­tional uses were con­sid­ered ur­ban and in­con­sis­tent with the ur­ban de­ferred zon­ing in the area.

Mayor Tracey Roberts read out the res­o­lu­tion, which said the pro­posal was “pre­ma­ture” and “would prej­u­dice the ef­fec­tive un­der­tak­ing of the plan­ning process to en­able de­vel­op­ment to oc­cur in an or­derly and proper man­ner”.

The Times un­der­stands the vote was closely split be­tween 13 elected mem­bers, with a sim­ple ma­jor­ity pass­ing the mo­tion to re­ject the of­fer.

Res­i­dent Kate Cough­lan, who owns one of the blocks, said the de­ci­sion was dis­ap­point­ing but not sur­pris­ing.

“The landown­ers and aged care providers met on nu­mer­ous oc­ca­sions with the City’s plan­ning of­fi­cers,” she said.

Mrs Cough­lan said the City had pre­sented its es­ti­mate of what they con­sid­ered an ac­cept­able devel­oper con­tri­bu­tion dur­ing ini­tial meet­ings, based on other lo­cal de­vel­op­ments.

How­ever, she felt it was “from the higher end of the con­tri­bu­tion scale in Wan­neroo, in ar­eas quite un­like the sub­ject land”.

She said it did not ap­pear to take into con­sid­er­a­tion the cur­rent real es­tate mar­ket or that the pro­posed use of the land was for an aged care fa­cil­ity and re­tire­ment units.

The Wan­neroo res­i­dent said State Plan­ning Pol­icy guide­lines al­lowed them to make a vol­un­tary con­tri­bu­tion “in the ab­sence of a devel­oper con­tri­bu­tion plan”.

“We based the amount we of­fered as a vol­un­tary con­tri­bu­tion, us­ing a 10 per cent of land value guide,” she said. “The City’s es­ti­mated con­tri­bu­tion fig­ure works out to be greater than 25 per cent of the land value; it means that to de­velop four 2ha blocks, more than one of the blocks be­comes for­feit to the City as a devel­oper con­tri­bu­tion.”

Mrs Cough­lan said while it was a close de­ci­sion, it was dis­ap­point­ing not enough coun­cil­lors sup­ported the of­fer.

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