Category Archives: Keep it Green

Brandon Park Secondary College site development – ensure its community friendly petition

Council has informed the community about a proposed development plan for the former Brandon Park Secondary College site. Proposal for Developing buildings (3-5 storeys in height) which will be for independent retirement living, and aged care facilities. The applicant is Ryman Healthcare, which developed and operates the Weary Dunlop aged care and retirement complex in Wheelers Hill.

The Brandon Park Residents Action Group has created a petition to ensure any development on the site did not dilute the liveability of the neighbourhood, especially the loss of open space. The Petition is asking Council to ensure that Ryman Healthcare address the requirements in the Development Plan Overlay for the site, such as open space, drainage, trees, traffic and parking.

To support them please click on link provided to direct you to petition. Feedback needs to be provided to Council by 26 September 2016, so please sign petition before then.

Link to petition: Brandon Park Secondary College site development – ensure its community friendly

Related information:

Proposed Development Plan: Former Brandon Park Secondary College site

Brandon Park Residents Action Group

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Open Space is a major contributor to liveability!

Open Space has been a hot issue recently and community members wishing for more green and open space areas to protect the environment and provide a healthy lifestyle for residents.  The Monash Council has received submissions or feedback by community members in relation to open space. However many may not be satisfied with the Council’s response to this issue.
The City of Monash Council was seeking feedback from the community to help them develop an Open Space Strategy. Consultations closed on 30 June 2016 and feedback received will be collated for an Opportunities paper to be confirmed later this year.

Did you have an opportunity to provide your views? Do you think you will be heard?

The following slide is Monash Ratepayers Open Space Strategy Slideshow and particularly in relation to converting some areas in Glen Waverley into open space.

Monash Ratepayers for Open Space Strategy

Open Space by Monash Ratepayers
Open Space Submission by Monash Ratepayers. Click to view slide/document

Under the Monash 2021 – a thriving community plan it states what community members value in relation to the environment and open space. Being in a ‘green’ city with bike or walk paths, tree-lined streets, areas to be green and leafy with fresh air and open space was important to them.

One of the Council’s key priorities for the next 10 years is for a green and naturally-rich city.  This will include maintaining the provision of open space for passive and active uses and maintaining the leafy character of the city and streets, as well as using opportunities to engage the community in discussion about environmental issues. 

What are your views on open space? Are you happy with the Council’s performance in this area so far?

The option for comments on the Open Space Strategy closed on 30 June. You can still have your say! Contact your Councillors (http://www.monash.vic.gov.au/AboutUs/Council/Councillors#contact) and write to Leader Press (monash@leadernewspapers.com.au).

Links relating to open space in the community:

Green Waverley: Research supports a green space for diverse uses 

Green Waverley: The Healthy Alternative

People’s Park Option for redeveloping Glen Waverley Central Car Park –  Monash Ratepayers

Monash 2021 – a thriving community

Monash Council Environment

Leave your comments by clicking on the Leave a Comment button above.

EM&U will publish your letters, emails etc.  We exist to empower the community to speak out. Name and contact details must be provided though not necessarily published.  Each author is responsible for their content and views do not always represent all involved with our group.

Development or Devastation?

My walk to work, a mere 2.5km through Glen Waverley’s northern corner, is increasingly challenging as I negotiate yet another broken, illegally fenced, car blocked, mud covered or flooded footpath as another home site is bulldozed of every last blade of grass before being swamped under a monstrous concrete box.

Council has reached an “in-principle” position on Amendment C125 which is supposed to provide some degree of control over what gets built where and what happens to the vegetation which comprises the “garden character” of the City of Monash.  You can see the position they reached and how it changed on March 29, 2016 on page 7 of the meeting minutes of the Council meeting.

On May 3, many residents attended the public submissions evening to offer their opinion on the “in-principle” position.***  There are no minutes currently published on Council’s website but it is fair to say that a significant percentage, probably a significant majority, of speakers were strongly opposed to the weakening of the controls by Cr Lake’s amendments to the proposals in the original C125 report.

Council is due to adopt, or amend then adopt, the “in-principle” position at the next meeting on May 30.  After that, the amendment goes before a State government planning review panel before being finally presented to the Minister for Planning for his approval.

NOW, is almost your last opportunity to influence the outcome of the process.

***Editor’s note:  Check out the comments to read one of the presentations to Monash Council on 3 May.

“The area in question should remain NRZ4”

The Economic Case for Protecting Trees in Cities

A recently published article reports on the research of US Forest Service’s Northern Research Station makes the case for the economic benefits of trees in cities.  Given the current planning scheme amendments under consideration, this makes for an interesting and relevant read…

David Nowak whittles down 30 years of studying the economic value of forests to this advice: If you can only plant one tree, plant it in a city.

After all, in an era of overwhelming need for urban infrastructure improvements, trees offer cities some of the best bang for their buck. Trees remove carbon dioxide, filter air pollution, and produce oxygen. They absorb rainwater, UV radiation, and noise. They slow down traffic, improve property values, and reduce human stress and mental fatigue. And they provide shade, which means we have to use less energy to cool down.

“Trees help us avoid emissions in the first place, in addition to taking out carbon,” says Nowak, a lead researcher at the U.S. Forest Service’s Northern Research Station in Syracuse, New York. “It’s a big problem that they help us solve.”

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No trees?
IMG_9198
Trees or…

 

Council has received feedback arguing that:

  • Canopy trees will increase heating and lighting costs,
  • Canopy trees will cause carbon dioxide poisoning, and
  • Canopy trees are an unnecessary risk, cost and nuisance.

It is perhaps timely to consider some scientifically based research.

If trees bring economic benefits to cities, what is the cost of their removal?  And who pays for that?

The answer to the first question is hard to quantify for Monash but, in qualitative terms, the cost of removal is the economic benefit lost through the absence of those trees.

The answer to the second is much easier.  Ratepayers pay for all council expenses ultimately; either through increased rates (difficult under the present capping scheme) or through reduced services and infrastructure maintenance.

Councillor Brian Little has been watching the tree coverage using overhead imagery available on the “NearMap” website.  I won’t put words in his mouth here but Monash’s tree canopy is diminishing rapidly and that’s something we all should be worried about.

 

 

Hands off our reserve! Another Council not interested in green open space?

Have you seen this article? Another Council not interested in green open space?

Glendale Reserve, SpringvaleGreater Dandenong Council plans to sell part of Springvale’s Glendale Reserve to Minaret College   GEORDIE COWAN SPRINGVALE DANDENONG LEADER JUNE 01, 2015 12:15PM  
via Greater Dandenong Council plans to sell part of Springvale’s Glendale Reserve to Minaret College | Herald Sun.

The City of Greater Dandenong Council is proposing to sell part of Glendale Reserve located at Whitworth Avenue, which is very much-loved and highly used by community members. The land is occupied by the existing kindergarten and scout hall (used by the Scout Association). 

http://www.greaterdandenong.com/news/1827/proposed-sale-of-part-of-glendale-reserve

The Council proposes to sell the land to property owners, Minaret College (Islamic School) to be used. If Council goes ahead with the sale the land will need to be rezoned and the reserve status removed.

 

Submissions on the proposal from the community were accepted by the council and they had the opportunity to express their views at a consultation meeting, with majority of attendees against the sale.

 

Residents and community members protest that the Glendale Reserve is one of the only green spaces around that area. Buildings on the land can be demolished and will be more open space. This will cater to future generations, young and old. There is a high rate of couples with children in Springvale and the need for open space for children to play and be outdoors. Many children may spend more time on the internet or watching TV due to a lack of open space and a lack of exercise is detrimental to their physical health.

 

Other communities are fighting for more open space as important for the wellbeing of the community.

https://monashandyou.wordpress.com/2015/04/20/green-waverley-research-supports-a-green-space-for-diverse-uses/

Low levels of exercise and obesity is a concern as well as chronic disease. The Greater Dandenong Council CWP Priorities and Objectives 2013-17 states that for recreation, facilities and programs are provided which will help increase participation in sport, leisure and the arts. More participation in physical activity results from providing adequate, good quality parks and open spaces. http://www.greaterdandenong.com/document/25455/community-wellbeing-plan-2010-13

 

Minaret college who is leasing the kindergarten has planned to expand the building if purchase the land. However the council report summary of the proposed sale states that the traffic within Whitworth Avenue can become very congested at the peak school times. By Minaret continuing to expand on this location and increasing the size of the kindergarten, this will only add to an existing concern.                                                       http://www.greaterdandenong.com/document/27619/council-minutes-27-january-2015

 

The Council did mention that if sold, funds could be used to purchase more open space in Springvale North. However in the past another reserve Erickson Gardens was sold to build a new Police Station and had the opportunity to use funds to increase open space, it has not done so. In fact their open strategy report revealed that it is lacking in open space in that area and many other areas in Springvale. http://www.greaterdandenong.com/document/25797/open-space-strategy

 

There needs to be some balance. If allow for this to happen what will stop others doing the same in other areas. The council need to keep this land and consider the consequences if go ahead and sell.

Take a stand now to save the reserve! Attend the Council meeting on 10 August 2015 at 7pm to show your support. Councillors need to know!

Venue: Council Chambers Level 2, 225 Lonsdale Street, Dandenong

 

Glendale Reserve

Want to know more? Click on link provided – Save out spaces plea

Contact Glendale Reserve Campaign Group https://saveglendalereserve.wordpress.com/contact-us/

Save Glendale Reserve Facebook Page

Save Glendale Reserve Facebook Page
Save Glendale Reserve Facebook Page –  click image

Sustainability

Empowering Monash & YOU (EM&U) has become increasingly aware of the community’s concern with issues such as cutting down of trees, high rise housing development, increasing density of built on areas, the decrease of garden or permeable areas on each property, decrease in species of birds in the area, increasing traffic flow, inadequate bicycle paths and parking, litter entering waterways and more.

EM&U is now considering how it can play an active role in advocacy for sustainability in Monash.  Your input is welcome.  Contact us at EMonashU@gmail.com

Glen Waverley: Up she rises!

Walking through Glen Waverley this week I noticed two property development notices.  What particularly caught my eye was the proposed height of these buildings and the reduction in car parking spaces. Feeling not well informed I decided it is time find out more about the planning process encouraging others to do the same  and to have a say.  YOUR view is important!

Information on ALL applications for planning permits is available on the Monash Council web site at: https://epathway.monash.vic.gov.au/ePathway/Production/Web/GeneralEnquiry/EnquirySummaryView.aspx

What questions do we, the people of Monash, need to ask Council? Whatever question you have is valid and should be asked!

  • What will the quality of life be for the increased population living in apartments in these areas?
  • How will the experience of Monash community using these areas change?
  • Can developers be required to provide facilities for pedestrians and cyclists?
  • Will developers be permitted to reduce car parking spaces?
  • How can the community have more input into development in their area?
  • Can councils play a more educative role in the area of property development?
  • others (please leave a comment!)

Application for planning permit 1:  15 storey building in O’Sullivan Road

There are to be two public information sessions about this application
Thursday 18 September 6 – 8 pm  & Tuesday 23 September 2 – 4 pm at the Council Offices 293 Springvale Road Glen Waverley

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Notice of Application for planning permit for O’Sullivan Road.
Planning_report_extract_13092014
Copy of page from planning documents on Monash Council web site – the pink building is the proposed 15 storey building. The ink blue buildings in front of the IKON building are on the current Central Car Park site and appear to represent the developer’s vision of a possible future for the Glen Waverley Activity Centre.

Application for Planning Permit 2: five storey building in Springvale Road

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Notice of Application for planning permit for five storey building on Springvale Road

What do YOU think of these proposals?  Leave your comments to let us know. Note this is not communicating with Council so make sure you respond through the channels on the posters above if you wish to do so.

My view?  With the potential for high rise development in Glen Waverley the Central Car Park should become ‘Central Park’ i.e. NOT be built on.  They quality of life for people living in apartments in Glen Waverley and those shopping, walking and cycling through will be much improved by a large community open space.