No warning about eight storeys at the back fence
ANOTHER group of residents in the Canning Bridge precinct says a major increase in building heights adjacent to their street wasn’t flagged during community consultation sessions.
A draft of the revised Canning Bridge Activity Centre Plan has proposed rezoning the west side of Forbes Road from H4 to H8, giving landowners the right to build up to eight storeys.
But a number of Third Avenue residents like Geoff Kirk purchased their blocks after the existing CBACP was adopted, then built two-storey homes on the basis their Forbes neighbours would only be two storeys higher.
“We collectively made a decision to have a nice residential street,” Mr Kirk said.
“Everybody has invested a lot in building these houses for residential family homes, and now they’re threatening that with the eight storeys – that’s a very different story.”
Mr Kirk says eight storeys along the back fence will mean the end to privacy, while they’re also concerned about traffic impacts.
“And with it, a massive loss of economic value to most people – certainly for me.
“I’ve spoke to two real estate agents and they said ‘we still think you can sell it … like it is to a family when you’ve got four storeys on your rear, but at eight storeys, forget it – no chance in hell’.
“So you’re only selling it to a developer and you’re only getting land value – you’ll get nothing for your building.”
Frank Teisser lives just around the corner and says he went to community workshops run by Melville council’s consultant Hatch Roberts Day last year and is adamant there was “no mention” of the extra heights they’d been facing.
“So I asked the councillor representing Applecross about that, and he said there were a couple of submissions wanting to increase height on the west side of Forbes,” Mr Teisser said.
Mr Kirk says it’s not fair “opportunistic purchasers” got their way and residents weren’t even alerted.
Since the draft plan was released, residents have put together a petition opposing the height increase, with 95 per cent of owners signing up.
Two weeks ago council-appointed community reference group member Dayle Kenny also claimed that heights had been changed without the community being alerted (“We don’t need bonus heights,” Herald September 25, 2022).
Mayor George Gear initially refuted the claim, but this week offered Mr Kenny an apology after the latter provided photographs to back his claim. For his full apology see Herald Letters on page 4.
The Herald contacted Hatch Roberts Day for comment.