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Council objects to new development

13 May 2014

Council objects to new development Image

The redevelopment of the historic global television studios on Dorcas St has hit a hurdle, with the City of Melbourne objecting to a planning application for the site.

The proposed development will encompass both 49-61 Coventry St and 26-66 Dorcas St and includes two towers, 76.9 metres and 76.3 metres high respectively.

The development is more than 25,000 sqm, so the Planning Minister, Matthew Guy, is the sole authority on its approval.

In its submission to the Minister, the council said it objected to both the height and setbacks within the application.

“The height of the towers exceeds the maximum building height under the Design and Development Overlay and the height is inappropriate in the context of existing surrounding buildings in both the City of Melbourne and the City of Port Phillip,” the council report stated.

“The setback from the eastern boundary is insufficient having regard to the development potential of adjoining sites and the requirements of the Design and Development Overlay.”

The report did point out that if these two issues were addressed, the council would have no issue with the development.

“The objection could be considered to be withdrawn if the overall height of the development is reduced to 60 metres excluding plant and the setbacks to the eastern boundary are increased to minimum of 8 metres.”

When the matter was discussed at a Future Melbourne Committee meeting in May, Cr Ken Ong said: “What we’re objecting to is the built form outcome in relation to its surrounding areas and neighbouring properties.”

He also warned of the precedent this decision could set.

“This is only two tower developments out of a possible five on this location. So getting a good outcome now will set a precedent and baseline for the future three towers. If we get this wrong, we get it wrong five times.”

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