Ghetto fears

SPRINGVALE South residents fear a “ghetto” would eventuate from a five-unit development on a single block in their court.
City of Greater Dandenong councillors rejected a proposal for two double storey and three single storey dwellings at 12 Wirilda Court on 27 October.
Eight objections from surrounding residents cited concerns about traffic congestion and parking, drainage and flooding, and neighbourhood character.
Most objectors at a meeting with the applicant and council on 14 January said they feared the court would become a “ghetto” if the development proceeded.
A council report said the concern related to “the number of units that could bring low socio-economic tenants that may seek to undermine the neighbourhood character of the area”.
The site is zoned for “incremental change” and the report recommended approving the proposal, saying it would add to housing diversity, was only a minor increase in density and offered adequate car parking.
But councillor Sean O’Reilly said the block was in the bowl of the court and the development would completely change how the court operated.
“What we should be mindful of is an application is not just about a site itself but where it is placed,” he said.
“I foresee traffic and parking issues.”
Cr Peter Brown said the application was for 17 bedrooms but only included 10 car parks.