August 30, 2011  |  Adjournment

Planning: Ivanhoe structure plan

The matter I raise is for the attention of the Minister for Planning. The action I seek is that the minister meet with the Save Ivanhoe group and attend a neighbourhood walk through the streets of Ivanhoe. A number of residents have raised concerns about the Ivanhoe structure plan. A draft of the plan was recently released by Banyule City Council. It would be instructive for the minister to meet with the Save Ivanhoe group not only in his role as the Minister for Planning but also in his role as an upper house member for Northern Metropolitan Region, an electorate that includes the area of Ivanhoe.

I was fortunate to have the opportunity to attend a neighbourhood walk with Ivanhoe residents who are concerned about the draft Ivanhoe structure plan released by the council.

We spent 2 hours over the weekend walking around the East Ivanhoe Village Shopping Centre, Ivanhoe shops and local residential areas to see how this draft plan would affect the heights of a range of buildings, which could be as high as eight storeys, and how overshadowing and its effect on amenity would affect local residents.

Prior to that we attended a hastily arranged public meeting of 300 local residents of the Ivanhoe community who voiced their concerns about the consultation process regarding the Ivanhoe structure plan put in place by Banyule City Council. Their concern is that they are being asked now to make public comments, a process which is being extended for the second time by Banyule City Council, on a structure plan. Quite frankly the draft plan is an ambit claim by the council. Had there been adequate representation of residents on the structure plan consultative committee, this plan would have never seen the light of day.

Residents are being asked to comment on a plan that involves height limits of up to eight storeys in their residential areas. There is no way known that a draft plan of this nature would have ever seen the light of day had there been adequate representation of local residents on the consultative committee that dealt with the structure plan in the first instance.

I have written to the mayor of the City of Banyule and have asked for the draft structure plan to be withdrawn. I have asked for a new residents committee to be established, that the committee work with the council to develop a draft Ivanhoe structure plan that best represents the views and aspirations of the Ivanhoe people and that that plan be the one that is subject to community consultation. Local residents should not have to make submissions in haste regarding a draft Ivanhoe structure plan that does not represent their starting point or aspirations for the future in our local community. These points will be instructive for the Minister for Planning to hear more about.

I commend the Save Ivanhoe group, which has got our community members working hard together. I encourage the Minister for Planning to meet with them and tour the Ivanhoe electorate.