Channel 9: Finally, a Result…and a Good One!

Greetings all,

I’m a bit leery about saying it’s all over, but that’s what it looks like. There is no further avenue for Channel 9 to increase what is contained in the L&E Court determination. So after you’ve read the details, I hope you’ll join me in saying, “Well done us!”

Yesterday the Planning Assessment Commission (PAC) announced that the Land and Environment Court has handed down its judgment on the appeal lodged by Channel 9 for the redevelopment of its site in Willoughby. The Court has allowed an increase in the maximum number of apartments to 400 units (up from the previously approved 350 units). Importantly, the Court did not approve an increase in building height and so the development is limited to a maximum of eight storeys (Channel 9 wanted it increased to 12 storeys).

Among the significant details contained in the court’s determination are:

A 6% reduction in overall floor space allowing more open space and less site coverage;

All properties in Walter St will now receive three hours sunlight at mid-winter compared with the 1 1/2 hours for 31 Walter St under the PAC determination. This was achieved by a combination of height reduction and stepping back of the two offending buildings;

Specific dimensions for building setback and heights. This was not included in the PAC determination and will give more certainty regarding conditions of approval so that setbacks, building heights, size of open space areas and location of the building envelopes on the site are all shown on the attached envelope plan (note: the street shown on the plan, running down the left hand side is Artarmon Rd and the street running across the bottom is Richmond Ave);

Retention of the existing building at 6 Artarmon Rd at three storeys plus a setback fourth storey, for commercial or retail use;

The retention of a number of specified trees;

Left-in, left-out access to Artarmon Rd.

For full details of the determination see the attached L&E Court Signed Instrument document.

It’s very pleasing that the L&E Court appeal has resulted in a good planning result…finally! Looking back it seems we’ve (all of us) set up a model for community consultation and involvement in planning matters that have a major impact on the surrounding area. It needs to be recognized by the community that without Council’s backing and involvement the result for the site might have been quite different. Thanks are due to all Councillors, the Mayors, both immediate past and current, Nick Tobin and Greg Woodhams, in their roles as General Manager and Environmental Services Director, and the members of Council’s Strategic Planning Group, Linda McClure and Lara Nguyen.

Channel 9 continue to maintain that they have no current plans to quit the site but ultimately the next step in the planning process for the site will be for development applications to be lodged for each stage of the development. It is WAAG’s intention to keep the community advised of future matters pertaining to the Channel 9 site.

Kind regards,

Bob on behalf of the WAAG Team.

L&E Court Signed Instrument of Approval – 23 Dec 2014

Channel 9 L and E Court Building Envelope Plan