Thursday, 5 February 2015

Rates Stop Press

Rates Stop Press

For the first time Council has agreed to set a target rate first and to cut our cloth to fit. It was Unanimously passed when a division was called.

ITEM 54 MOTION ON NOTICE – COUNCILLOR HEWITSON RE RATES MOVED Councillor Hewitson SECONDED Councillor Hughes That: in framing the 2015/16 Budget, council requests the Administration to provide options and their implications within the target rate of up to the average LGPI for the past five years average plus one %.

If followed through a rate increase will be half of the amount above inflation over the past 10 years.

Dear Colleagues,

Celeste from the Eastern Messenger gave me a call to say that another Councillor has claimed that motion 54 about rate rises would make no difference as the staff have now a long termed plan for LGPI plus 1%.

In response I sent the attached data to Celeste to show the difference it would make if we as elected members stick with a rate rise of up to LGPI plus 1%.

I explained to Celeste that our council without a target rate rise can approve projects and then set the rate afterwards. Money is unlimited? Without the motion being followed through by the Council, the rate could be way above the 3.92% maximum.

This years rate rise would be up to 3.92% if set now because from the first attachment the LGPI average over the past five years is 2.92%. This already 1% below the increase of 4.95% last year.

 Over the years covered in the attached graph the increase in rate rise would have been 30% less. If we follow through over the next four years with a target rate to approve new projects we will need to review our prior expenditure. Money is limited and our expenditure valued and focused. Much more with just little more.

With my good wishes

Unley High Rise planning Rules Challanged

Unley High Rise Rules Challenged

7 Storeys High?  Rules are challenged! 

Submission to Development Assessment Commission
244-248 Unley Road, Hyde Park
Cr Michael Hewitson AM
  South Australian DEVELOPMENT ACT, 1993

Applicant: Xinyu International Group C/- Trice Project and Development Managers
Development Number: 090/M003/15

Dear Alex,
          I am asking the DAC to reject this application in its current form because it is at significant variance to the Unley Development Plan covering 244-248 Unley Road.
 The Urban Corridor Zone – High Street (Unley Road) Policy Area, allowing for mixed use development up to five (5) storeys, was introduced into the Development Plan on the 31 October 2013 via the Corridors Development Plan Amendment.
1.     This plan allows for a 2 metre boundary and a 30 degree building envelope.  This plan is (30 degrees from 3 metres above ground level at the rear/zone boundary).  This is 50% above the rule and is significant for the following reasons
a.     It will set a precedent for every future submission making a mockery of the years our community has spent in negotiating a 2 metre rule with the State Minister of Planning.  (See attached newsletter history from Cr Michael Hewitson demonstrating the sincerity and good faith of our negotiations. I was the Presiding officer for the Unley Strategy and Development committee and argued against expanding our metropolitan footprint obliterating our most productive agricultural land but also for a set of rules the Community of Unley could live with given the State Government's overall control.)
b.     For the residential zones abutting Unley Road including heritage Zones setting a 3 metre rule by precedent reduces the sunlight hours in mid-winter significantly as well as the residence next door feeling they are living with overshadowing for light, sound and vision.
c.      Restriction of views from rear two storey townhouses but no overt treatment of main apartment building given substantial separation distance.
d.     Retaining wall and fence above (3.2 metres above adjacent ground level) for majority of rear site boundary.
e.      Unley has a vision for “green space, trees and sunlight. The removal of a number of regulated and significant trees exist upon the site, most notably on the south eastern corner accentuates the need to enforce the 2 metre 30 degree rule.

2.     A Seven storey building is breaking the Unley Development plan for a maximum of five storeys.  A 40% overbuild is again a precedent setting a significant variation to the plan and zone.

I share with my co councillor for Unley Ward the following concerns.
3.      Traffic management with particular reference to impacts on residents of Hart Avenue and Opey Avenue, and access to Unley Road.
4.      Separation of private and commercial vehicle movements on site. The developer should be responsible for any local traffic mitigation costs for work required to control traffic during and after construction directly due to the project.
5.      Lack of a Construction Statement detailing how building work, including the excavation of the deep underground carpark and removal of spoil will be managed while maintaining access for residents and the adjoining Metro carpark to the south.  Issues that need to be resolved as part of a construction management plan need to include heavy vehicles routes/queuing/standing areas (this will be a significant issue given the extent of excavation)  car parking for tradespersons and construction hours
6.      Failure to commit to a dilapidation survey by an independent consultant of all existing properties adjacent to the site, say within 60 metres, including public infrastructure.

You are addressing the first plan under the new planning rules for Unley Road. If this development is rejected in its current form you will ensure the planning rules agreed to after much discussion, consultation and compromise become real and enforceable. Our Unley community would feel cheated with less.
With my good wishes

Michael Hewitson AM
Councillor City of Unley 
08 82719731