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Wednesday, 21 March 2018

BCNA Budget Submission to City of Port Phillip

Each year the BCNA makes a submission to the City of Port Phillip (CoPP) for their consideration in developing the Council’s budget for the upcoming budget year.

In recent years the BCNA has been successful in advocating proposals for work on improved lighting on the bike trail and for improved safety features on the Promenade during 2017. In 2018/19 our submission includes a traffic management study for the Beacon Cove area; possible improvements to the community bus service between Port Melbourne and St Kilda, improved signage near the Princes Street drain to alert beach users to the unsafe water, and continued efforts to manage and prevent graffiti. Further details can be accessed here.

Rejection of Development at 10 Narooma Place

The City of Port Phillip (CoPP) has refused a planning application (773/2017) to demolish a garage and erect a three-storey dwelling as this would create a housing pattern out of character with the area. The homes in this area are predominantly two-storey. Also, the scale, bulk and massing of the development would not be in character. Local residents and BCNA opposed the development - the BCNA submission can be downloaded here.

Port Phillip CEO Report

This report from the CEO of the City of Port Phillip (CoPP) may be of interest to some of you. It includes the usual assessment of how CoPP is meeting its objectives and a financial summary.

It also includes some information on the work being undertaken for planning the relocation of the waste transfer station. Those that don't visit the waste transfer station very often may be interested to know that it now has new residential apartments overlooking it from directly across the street.

Monday, 12 March 2018

Community Forum for Fishermans Bend Development - Tuesday 20 March

For those that are interested, a community forum on the Fishermans Bend Urban Renewal Area (FBURA) is going to be held on Tuesday 20 March at 6:15pm.

This is a timely opportunity to hear from the current batch of politicians about what’s in store for us over the next few years. We are also in the middle of a Planning Panel Review on the Government’s Draft Strategic Framework for FBURA.

Entry is free, and there is no need for registration – although you may want to get there early to guarantee a seat. More details are on a flyer which can be downloaded here.

Thursday, 1 March 2018

Foodstore Redevelopment at 103 Beach Street

The IGA & Spuntino Café site was sold in 2017 with a planning permit for a three-storey development of similar height to the existing building, comprising 15 apartments with retail premises on the ground floor.

We understand that the new owners, the V-Leader Group, have discussed plans for the site with Council. The owners have said they will consult with the community once plans are settled.

Princes Street Storm Water Drain

The BCNA has been advocating for an upgrade to this drain. The heavy rains in late December 2016 and in January 2017 highlighted the problems. Storm water discharges directly onto Port Melbourne beach and a large area was covered by a very smelly and unsightly scum. This type of event occurs after heavy rains in the catchment. The scum constitutes a health hazard as there is inadequate signage by the EPA alerting beach users and swimmers to the dangers. It also provides a poor image to tourists and visitors.

The drain is the responsibility of Melbourne Water. A re-alignment was agreed between Melbourne Water and the community in 2006 that would take the storm water further out into the bay. Unfortunately, this work has not been given priority. The BCNA has written to the Minister for Water seeking an upgrade but without success. We have discussed our concerns with The Hon. Martin Foley, the State Member for Albert Park. He has undertaken to discuss our concerns with the Minister for Water.

Update on Fishermans Bend

A Planning Review Panel was formed last year to advise the Minister on a new planning control for the Fishermans Bend area.

The Panel will commence public hearings in March. The hearings are designed to give Councils, land owners, agencies, community groups and individuals who made submissions on the draft Framework an opportunity to explain their concerns. The Panel is then expected to provide its report to the Minister within 40 business days of the last day of public hearings.

The BCNA raised concerns about the poor decision-making model for the project (five organization are involved), the absence of an operational plan, and no agreed budget in a submission last December. Rowan Groves, President of Port People Inc., will include our concerns in a presentation from South Port Urban Responsible Renewal (SPURR). SPURR represents 49 community groups in the South Melbourne, Port Melbourne and nearby areas. The BCNA is a member.

It is unfortunate that planning controls are being drafted before the strategic direction for the area is settled and announced by the Victorian Government.

Last week the Minister for Planning announced that he was “calling in” 26 major projects for the area. These will be assessed against the new planning control by an independent advisory committee.

Tuesday, 20 February 2018

Update on Development at 1-7 Waterfront Place

We understand that VCAT will review the City of Port Phillip's (CoPP) decision to refuse a planning application for the “construction of a 10-storey mixed use building over two basement levels containing 175 dwellings and two retail premises of 355 square metres and a reduction in car parking requirements” at a six-day hearing commencing on the 19th March 2018. (VCAT Ref P2100/2017).

The developer submitted new plans for the site in early February. If you objected to the earlier plans, you should have received a letter from the developer’s solicitors with details. If not, contact Ms Rhodie Anderson at Original objectors may wish to revise their Statement of Grounds now that new plans have been submitted. This needs to be on the VCAT application form with copies sent to the CoPP and the developer’s solicitor. New objectors can complete a Statement of Grounds. A fee of $19.90 applies for individuals and not-for-profit organisations. Fee details are shown at  New and revised Statement of Grounds must be submitted by 27 February 2018.

The BCNA Committee met CoPP planning staff to discuss the plans. As a result, the Committee has decided to continue to object to the plans. The Committee wants to see the site developed but according to the CoPP's planning guidelines. Our objections are about visual bulk, that the plans were not in accordance with the plans listed in the VCAT Order of January 2015; overshadowing of the foreshore; and traffic congestion. Our revised Statement of Grounds can be downloaded here.

More Air Quality Monitoring at Station Pier

The Minister for the Environment has written to The Hon. Martin Foley, Member for Albert Park, informing him that the EPA will request the Victorian Ports Corporation Melbourne (VPCM) to expand its current monitoring program at Station Pier to include an additional monitoring station. The EPA will work with VPCM and the BCNA to determine a suitable location for the station. Information gathered from additional monitoring will assist the EPA to determine what steps may be required to address potential air quality issues.

The Australian Government sets standards for fuel emissions from ships. This is currently at 3.5% sulphur content, but is scheduled to fall to 0.5% from 1 January 2020. The Commonwealth Minister’s office has written to the BCNA to say that they expect all vessels and ships to comply with the new standards from 1 January 2020.

Beacon Cove Seawall Repairs

The City of Port Phillip (CoPP) will commence seawall repairs this week. Certain areas of the seawall require repair to maintain structural integrity.

The work will predominantly be in an area close to Princes Pier. All work is expected to be completed by 31 March 2018, weather permitting.  The CoPP will attempt to minimise disruption to use of the boardwalk.

Beachpatrol 3207 Free Film Night

On Thursday 15 March, Beachpatrol 3207 has arranged a free showing of a recent documentary on plastic in our oceans around the world. A Plastic Ocean has won many awards for its content and spectacular photography.

There will be a short Q&A session afterwards and tea and coffee is provided.

The venue is the Port Melbourne Town Hall and reservations are required. Door open at 6:15pm and it should be finished by 9pm. More details can be found here.