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Minister approves Amendment C171

15 Jul 2013

Planning Minister Matthew Guy approved the City of Melbourne’s planning scheme Amemdment C171: Southbank last month after much discussion and deliberation.

The decision will have a lasting impact on new developments in the area, finally putting in concrete, rules and guidelines for future planning in Southbank.

Mr Guy said it was vital to have these structures in place in Southbank, given its importance to the design and feel of Melbourne as a whole.

“This site is in one of the best locations for high density living, taking the pressure off Melbourne’s suburbs, being within easy walking and cycling distance of the CBD and on the doorstep of major tram and train routes, with shops, entertainment and an array of services,” Mr Guy said.

“In a rapidly evolving area like Southbank it is critical that we plan to protect the quality and street life of the area by providing more services and more public spaces while being sympathetic to the neighbourhood,” he added.

He also pointed out that the amendment was great news for the arts precinct in Southbank, as it protected it from high-rise development.

“This amendment highlights the significance of our city’s much loved arts precinct by setting a 24-metre mandatory height limit around Hamer Hall, the Spire, the Arts Centre and adjoining area.”

The decision to approve the amendment comes after it was reconsidered for lodgement to the planning department by the City of Melbourne a number of times, due to community concerns with setback and mandatory height levels.

At the time the council submitted the amendment to the Planning Minister in September 2012, Lord Mayor Robert Doyle said: “At some point, even if everyone doesn’t like it, you have to draw a line. I think we’ve got it right. I think the wording is stronger than when we looked at it last time.”

For more reaction on the approval of Amendment C171 read this month’s column by Southbank Residents Group president Michael Smolders on page 12.

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