Instant park proposed as unit project rejected

By Casey Neill

Councillors have knocked back a 39-unit project in Noble Park and tied the developer to including public open space in any future site designs.
Councillor Roz Blades moved to refuse the application for 41-43, 47 and 49-51 Callander Road at the Monday 10 October Greater Dandenong Council meeting, saying the proposal “would result in an unacceptable overdevelopment of the site which will cause traffic chaos”.
The council received 20 objections relating to parking and amenity.
Cr Peter Brown said the project was out of character with the area and did not respect the amenity, and that each home would be on less than 300 square metres.
He said the 12,122 square metre site was an in-fill area, meaning the council could claim 5 per cent for its open space fund.
Cr Brown then moved a subsequent motion that the developer be required to make that contribution as 606 square metres of land and not cash in lieu.
“This is one way to ensure that we keep an area of parkland open,” he said.
“If we take cash in lieu we’re losing significant trees on that site.”
He said an intelligently designed site could retain 30 to 40-year-old trees on the periphery and create an instant park.
Cr Blades said it was an unusual motion “but it’s also unique and it’s also do-able”.
“I think it’s a good idea,” she said.
“We have had, in other circumstances, cash in lieu for parking.
“That hasn’t always been that successful, I don’t think.”
Cr Sean O’Reilly was the sole objector to the motion.
“There’s nothing wrong with the outcomes that are being sought by this motion,” he said.
“What is wrong is how the outcomes are looking to be achieved.
“We’re deciding on one element of a hypothetical application.”