In November we prepared a submission regarding a planning scheme amendment prepared by the City of Yarra which proposes to introduce planning controls to guide the scale of new development along Queens Parade to provide certainty regarding development outcomes. While our organisation supports the intention to provide certainty, we object to the proposed controls which we believe could be interpreted as encouraging the demolition of significant heritage fabric, retaining only the facade and 6 meters depth of the heritage building with a 21.5 meter tower built on top. We would argue that establishing a blanket rule such as this does not represent a positive heritage outcome, and question whether this equates to Facadism, a practice that has long been discredited as a means of managing new development in heritage areas.
It is our concern that the proposed controls will set a new benchmark for other significant historic strip centres across the municipality, and potentially across the state, so it is essential that a robust planning outcome is set out in the first instance. In our submission we called on the City of Yarra to either abandon or significantly revise the proposed controls based on our concerns. If the latter is pursued, we strongly encourage council to engage a heritage expert to peer review the recommendations.
To read our submission in full, click here.
To read more about the amendment and review the documentation, click here.
Title Image: View from Queens Parade (north side) to the former UK Hotel, 3D massing demonstrating possible future development envelope. Source: Queens Parade, Clifton Hill Built Form Review, prepared by Hansen Partnership, 15 December 2018.