Nedlands mayor fears small block owners to be impacted by housing density changes

Nedlands Mayor Max Hipkins shows potential new housing densities on Laura Street in Hollywood. Picture: Jon Bassett
Nedlands Mayor Max Hipkins shows potential new housing densities on Laura Street in Hollywood. Picture: Jon Bassett

NEDLANDS mayor Max Hipkins fears small block owners will feel the biggest impact from greater housing density flagged with councillors by State Government planners recently.

“Some home owners will take the money and run, but others have invested in new homes and may not be too happy at all with having higher density built next door,” Mr Hipkins said.

Last month, council was surprised when it was presented with potential WA Planning Commission (WAPC) changes to the City’s draft Local Planning Scheme No. 3 that would increase housing density in parts of the city’s suburbs.

The potential alterations included R60 in Hollywood north to Carrington Street, two blocks either side of Waratah Avenue, Dalkeith becoming R40 to R80, and a doubling of density to R20 on Asquith Road, Mt Claremont.

Council had anticipated the draft scheme had adequately planned for higher density, mainly along Stirling Highway and Broadway, to conform with State Government policy.

Mr Hipkins said while many of the changes in Hollywood may relate to consolidation of the Queen Elizabeth II Hospital as medical and research precinct, some of the possible WAPC alterations could drastically affect smaller streets.

“Laura Street, for example, west of Hampton Road, would be R160 on one side and R60 on the other, and there are very small lots, so high density of one side on them will create conflicts of scale between the existing houses and any new developments,” he said.

WAPC has considered Nedlands’ draft planning scheme for 10 months, including communication between it and the council staff.

A WAPC spokesman said the changes sent to the City on October 10 were intended to bring the scheme “up-to-date with current state planning policies regarding residential density”.

If the changes are to be included in the draft planning scheme they may be advertised for public comment longer than the required three months during summer.

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