Vincent moves to protect its character

ST Albans Avenue in Highgate will be the first area protected under the City of Vincent’s character retention policy.

Councillors approved the milestone policy, which will give residents the opportunity to nominate their street for character retention, at their meeting last month.

Mayor John Carey said residents often approached the council about protecting character streets.

“This policy seeks to do it and it’s a significant milestone,” Mr Carey said.

“But it’s a different approach because it’s street by street.

“This will be driven by the local streets – they will be telling us what they want.”

Mr Carey said the policy would give the City more power to protect character areas from development and could include guidelines on fences, carports and demolitions or limit the size of buildings.

Once a character retention area has been nominated, affected residents will be invited to attend a workshop to discuss the proposal.

The workshop will provide a consensus on what the street’s prevailing character is, as well as which buildings contribute to the character of the area and propose a set of guidelines to protect the area.

The St Albans Avenue character retention area guidelines will affect 12 homes.

A council report said two people objected to the draft policy for St Albans Avenue, five supported it and five did not respond.

The guidelines will require the facade of buildings to be retained, any additional storeys to be setback in a way that does not change the streetscape and the number of storeys capped at two.