A REQUEST to rezone 16ha of rural land earmarked by developers for a Mariginiup lifestyle village has been refused by the City of Wanneroo.
National Lifestyle Villages (NLV) managing director John Wood called on councillors at the May 26 meeting to back the change from rural to restricted use (lifestyle village).
The proposal for two Mornington Drive lots includes a former turf farm and about 8ha of Banksia woodland.
NLV first lodged an application with the City in 2006 to rezone the land to private clubs/recreation, which was referred to the Environmental Protection Authority and WA Planning Commission at a 2007 council meeting.
A second request was lodged in 2011 to rezone the site to restricted use (lifestyle village), which was refused by council, and then another in 2013 with additional restrictions and conditions to address concerns.
At a meeting in 2014 councillors discussed issues about the provision of services and utilities, arrangements for developer contributions and the future planning for the area and a decision was not made.
“We are committed to adding value to your community,” Mr Wood told the council last month.
“The last council meeting where you overturned the staff’s recommendation for approval, I got to understand the issues of integrity that you felt and that the other land owners may have been disadvantaged in the area. We have addressed those issues that you raised, we have addressed the sewer capacity, we have addressed the infrastructure contributions but also importantly the other 400ha next to us by 26 landowners have given us a letter of support for us to proceed.”
Mr Wood said he needed the council’s support to provide for local seniors who want to “age in place”.
He said the project could have been completed in 18 months rather than five years if it had been supported last month.
“Affordability is significant and challenging and is a real issue for seniors and the shire needs your support and more supply,” he said.
“Your City needs this amenity for your seniors and affordable housing.”
Opponents to the amendment said the area was still largely used for rural purposes and it could lead to land use conflicts.
The recommendation in the report to council said the proposal was premature because a Metropolitan Region Scheme amendment was needed prior to the rezoning of the site under the City’s District Planning Scheme 2.
It said that the area was shown as having potential for urban development in the East Wanneroo Structure Plan but further investigations were needed to determine how suitable the area was for it.
“The proposal is premature in that comprehensive structure planning is required for the area to ensure orderly and proper planning,” it said.
“Approval of the amendment would set a precedent for more intensive non-rural developments in the rural zone.”