Three-storeys ‘not needed’ – mayor

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POPULATION projections and demand for housing on the Mornington Peninsula over the next 15 years show there is no need to increase height limits, according to the mayor Cr Bev Colomb.

“Restricting height limits encourages developers to consider smaller dwelling types that would increase housing diversity without having a negative impact on the character of our residential areas,” she said.

Cr Colomb’s comments are the latest criticism by the shire of the state government’s decision to allow three storey dwellings of 11 metres in at least 10 towns – Capel Sound (formerly Rosebud West), Rosebud, Dromana, Mt Martha, Mornington, Baxter, Somerville, Tyabb, Hastings and Bittern.

Developments within the General Residential Zone (GRZ) can occur with no notifications or rights of appeal.

The shire’s Planning Services Committee on Monday 31 July gave the go ahead for the draft Mornington Peninsula Housing and Settlement Strategy 2017 to be placed on public exhibition for four weeks.

The strategy aims to outline directions for future housing and population growth on the peninsula over the next 15 years.

Its release follows public meetings held by the shire at Rosebud, Mornington and Tyabb to explain the government’s changes which it has already stated “presents a significant risk of inappropriate development on the peninsula”.

The shire is also encouraging residents to write to state planning minister Richard Wynn and planning bureaucrats to protest.

Cr Colomb said the housing and settlement strategy “intends to recognise the values and character of the peninsula and to ensure these aspects are properly protected for our community members”.

“Recently, we expressed concern over changes in state planning that could allow three storey buildings up to 11 metres to be constructed in residential areas across the peninsula.

“As such, the proposed Mornington Peninsula Housing and Settlement Strategy 2017 is intended to address the projected demand for housing and the estimated capacity we have on the peninsula.

“The strategy makes it clear that increases in height limits are unnecessary, and may in fact be counterproductive.”

Cr Colomb said the shire had “substantial support” from residents “to maintain our peninsula from overdevelopment”.

The draft Mornington Peninsula Housing and Settlement Strategy 2017 will go on exhibition and will be open for public comment in the coming weeks. 

First published in the Mornington News – 8 August 2017

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