Important Update !


Supermarket developer lodges last minute design changes to proposal

Freeman Tecoma have lodged a notice of amendments to their original development plan with VCAT.

Amendments include:

¬additional setback to northern interface from 3000mm to 5000mm at lowest level to provide acoustic enclosure to loading area and covered pedestrian walkway from Sandells Road;

¬additional setback ‘to more than 6000mm’ above the walkway;

¬additional planting to the landscaped zone in increased setback area;

¬additional setback to eastern boundary to reduce building bulk and ‘possible afternoon overshadowing’ of residential units with additional planting in increased setback;

¬reduction of supermarket floor to reduce building bulk;

¬additional tenancies to Burwood Highway frontage to increase activity across street frontage;

¬loading bay relocated to be contained within building;

¬plant and equipment moved away from residential areas (turntable has been removed);

¬pedestrian ramp relocated to eastern boundary  … creating a pedestrian ‘shortcut’ through the site between Burwood Highway and Sandells Road;

¬carparking layout adjusted;

¬western speedhump deleted;

¬sight distances increased;

¬seating added to Burwood Highway footpath.

Changes to the overall development size are insignificant with most changes being cosmetic. 

As a result of making the loading bay internal to the rear of the building, delivery trucks will now be required to reverse through the building, entering from Sandells Road. This will result in further traffic chaos on Sandells Road and adversely impact on the intersection with Burwood Highway as semitrailer trucks attempt to reverse down the access laneway which is also the exit from the 2 level carpark. Many other adverse effects are also predicted from these changes.

These changes though have opened an opportunity for persons who have not previously lodged an objection to the application to now lodge an objection with VCAT. Now is your chance to lodge an objection to the over-development of this site, but you have to be quick. Despite having had months to lodge any plan adjustments, including a 6 week stay of the Tribunal whilst the developer briefed new legal representatives, the developer has left it to the last second to lodge these changes and given people minimal time in which to lodge a formal objection. Objections must be lodged with VCAT on Form B, available within this VCAT practice_note_planning_1.doc (Pages 18 & 19) which gives further instructions. VCAT Reference is P3747/2008. A copy of the plan modifications should be available from the Shire of Yarra Ranges Offices, reference YR-2008/816. Please Act NOW as any further objections must be lodged by Wednesday 26th August !

This site will be updated as soon as further information comes available.

It is not over yet!!

By now you may have heard that the developer Freeman Tecoma has amended his plans to increase his chances of getting approval.

He addresses some small issues (mainly cosmetic) but not the most significant issues, being bulk/character, traffic, safety and noise.

Why? Because he can’t with this kind of development!

This is our chance! The best we have.

To use our independent traffic survey we need the surveyor to represent us at VCAT. Without the surveyor appearing as an expert witness our chances of beating this development are slim at best.

TVAG is working hard to put the submission together and fundraise for it all.

Give us a hand and help us beat this inappropriate development.

By making a donation you are contributing to maintaining the village character of Tecoma – our town.

No donation too small.

For your convenience find our bank details below or mail to PO Box 135, Kallista 3791

Thanks a lot for your support!

Your TVAG committee

Bendigo Bank, BSB 633 000, account # 137 545 794

Objecting to VCAT

In general VCAT doesn’t care if a supermarket is needed / wanted at all or the effect on other businesses.

They are only interested to see if it complies with the planning scheme…….

The proposed development goes against Vision 2020 formulated by the Shire of Yarra Ranges. The Shire has approved this vision and it is translated into new guidelines at the moment.

The proposed development also doesn’t comply with the planning schemes, but in the past that quite often has been overlooked in the decision making process.

Taken from objections lodged with the council:

Details of objections:

This development is degrading to the area and its associated “lifestyle” one that I bought into and value very much. Every summer I risk everything I own to live here amongst this beautiful environment and its relaxed character townships. The proposed building would be unsightly and insensitive to the area and view and a supermarket is not warranted or needed. There are many others in the area. The roads are also unable to handle heavy traffic which would cause inconvenience and even danger at times when hills evacuation may be required as occurred last summer.
This development could also affect planning laws in the future by establishing extra infrastructure and igniting residential sub-division debate or even allowing the laws to “change” in the future. The existing buildings are also part of Tecoma’s heritage.

Loss of character
Tecoma’s shopping strip is too small for a large development as planned. Its semi-rural character and the nature of the Dandenongs will be lost and tourism may be impacted.

Affect on local business
There is no need for a 3
rd supermarket between Upwey and Belgrave. Bon Ton Minimarket will suffer and so will Foodworks in Upwey. Both these local businesses may disappear and their employees become redundant. Tecoma residents have managed to do without a supermarket for the 20+ years I have lived in this area.

Tecoma has traffic bottlenecks stretching past Glenfern Rd at school starting and finishing times and evening rush hour. A large car park and the additional heavy traffic resulting from the proposed development will exacerbate this and clog up further access to and from McNicholl Rd and Sandells Rd.

This Development is not in line with Yarra Ranges Planning Scheme

Clause 22 04 1 paragraph 4
“Each commercial centre in the shire contains distinctive characteristics etc” The buildings supposed to be demolished are part of the distinct characteristics of Tecoma. The Hazelvale diary is one of the few historic buildings left.
The proposed development is not of the same character as the rest along Tecoma shopping strip or in fact across the whole Dandenong Ranges.

Clause 22 04 2 paragraph 2
“Provide well designed…. Meet the needs of the local residents and the tourists visiting the municipality.”
The removal of vista vantage points, no other restaurants/cafes in Tecoma beside the two to be demolished.
“Reinforces and strengthens the centres viability etc”
To remove historic buildings and replace them with modern industrial design buildings undermines the area and detracts from the image of Tecoma Village and will reduce the tourists stopping in our quaint little village.