THE City of Melville is reviewing the Canning Bridge Activity Centre Plan (CBACP) after recent controversial development applications.
The plan was approved by the WA Planning Commission in April 2016 and sets out design guidelines and requirements for developments close to Canning Bridge, which has been envisioned as a high-density commercial and residential node because of its public transport links.
But recent development approvals for Finbar’s 452-dwelling residential complex – boasting three towers up to 30-storeys high – and two four-storey Yarran Property Group apartment blocks on the outskirts of the Canning Bridge Activity Centre have drawn the ire of the Applecross and Mt Pleasant communities.
Residents have expressed concerns about increased traffic, overflow parking spilling on to the street, overshadowing and loss of privacy associated with living next door to a high-rise development.
Councillors have moved a handful of motions in the past six months relating to investigating aspects of the CBACP and Melville chief executive Shayne Silcox confirmed a review was under way.
Dr Silcox said the review would include examining the definition of height (which currently includes concessions for “community benefit”), car parking requirements and privacy and lot size controls.
It will also examine the introduction of mandatory ame-nity impact statements for some developments and assess whether the CBACP exceeds the density requirements laid out in State Planning Policy 4.2.
At Melville Council’s April meeting, councillor Cameron Schuster floated a 1200sq m minimum lot size for buildings 14m or taller and the removal of a clause that directs City planners not to consider privacy when assessing development applications in the CBACP area.
As one of the councillors that has represented the City of Melville on joint development assessment panels for the past year, Cr Schuster said he continued to support the CBACP but had first-hand experience of some of the objections raised by residents.
“Sitting on JDAP for some of the proposed developments in the area, you come across parts of the 100+ page document that are perhaps not as strong as you’d like them to be,” he said.
“Fundamentally the difficulties are not with the buildings or developments themselves – the issues I’ve had consistently are parking, privacy and overlooking, especially in transition areas.”