14 November 2007

 

Dear Councillor,

In pursuance of the provisions of the Local Government Act, 1993 and the Regulations thereunder, notice is hereby given that a POLICY REVIEW COMMITTEE MEETING of Penrith City Council is to be held in the Passadena Room, Civic Centre, 601 High Street, Penrith on Monday 19 November 2007 at 7:30pm.

Attention is directed to the statement accompanying this notice of the business proposed to be transacted at the meeting.

Yours Faithfully

 

 

Alan Travers

General Manager

 

BUSINESS

 

1.           APOLOGIES

 

2.           LEAVE OF ABSENCE

Leave of absence has been granted to:

Councillor Susan Page - 5 November 2007 to 17 December 2007 inclusive.

 

3.           CONFIRMATION OF MINUTES

Policy Review Committee Meeting - 29 October 2007.

 

4.           DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST

Pecuniary Interest (The Act requires Councillors who declare a pecuniary interest in an item to leave the meeting during discussion of that item)

Non-Pecuniary Interest

 

5.           ADDRESSING THE MEETING

 

6.           MAYORAL MINUTES

 

7.           NOTICES OF MOTION

 

8.           ADOPTION OF REPORTS AND RECOMMENDATION OF COMMITTEES

 

9.           MASTER PROGRAM REPORTS

 

10.         URGENT REPORTS (to be dealt with in the master program to which the item relates)

 

11.         QUESTIONS WITHOUT NOTICE

 

12.         COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE


POLICY REVIEW COMMITTEE MEETING

 

Monday 19 November 2007

 

table of contents

 

 

 

 

 

 

meeting calendar

 

 

confirmation of minutes

 

 

master program reports

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MEETING CALENDAR

February 2007 - December 2007

 

 

TIME

FEB

MAR

APRIL

MAY

JUNE

JULY

AUG

SEPT

OCT

NOV

DEC

Mon

Mon

Mon

Mon

Mon

Mon

Mon

Mon

Mon

Mon

Mon

Ordinary Meetings

7.30 pm

12

5

 

7v

25*

2

 

3ü

15

5

3

 

26

23

28

 

23

13

24^

 

 

17

Policy Review Committee

7.30 pm

 

12

2@

 

4

9

 

10

8

19#

10

19#+

 

30

21#

 

30

20#+

 

29@

 

 

 

#    Meetings at which the Management Plan ¼ly  reviews are presented.

^     Election of Mayor/Deputy Mayor [only business]

#+  General Manager’s presentation – half year and end of year review

@   Strategic Program progress reports [only business]

v   Meeting at which the Draft Management Plan is adopted for exhibition

ü    Meeting at which the 2006/2007 Annual Statements are presented

*     Meeting at which the Management Plan for 2007/2008 is adopted

 

 

-                 Council’s Ordinary Meetings are held on a three-week cycle where practicable.

-                 Extraordinary Meetings are held as required.

-                 Policy Review Meetings are held on a three-week cycle where practicable.

-                 Members of the public are invited to observe meetings of the Council (Ordinary and Policy Review Committee).  All meetings start at 7:30pm.

-                 Should you wish to address Council, please contact the Public Officer, Glenn McCarthy on 47327649

 

 


UNCONFIRMED MINUTES

 OF THE POLICY REVIEW COMMITTEE MEETING OF PENRITH CITY COUNCIL HELD IN THE PASSADENA ROOM, PENRITH

ON MONDAY 29 OCTOBER 2007 AT 7:38PM

PRESENT

His Worship the Mayor Councillor Greg Davies, Councillors Jim Aitken OAM, Kaylene Allison, David Bradbury, Lexie Cettolin, Kevin Crameri OAM, Ross Fowler, Jackie Greenow, Karen McKeown, Pat Sheehy AM and John Thain.

 

APOLOGIES

PRC 108  RESOLVED on the MOTION of Councillor Ross Fowler seconded Councillor Pat Sheehy AM that apologies be received and accepted from Councillors Mark Davies, Susan Page and Steve Simat.

 

LEAVE OF ABSENCE

Leave of Absence was previously granted to Councillor Garry Rumble for the period 8 October 2007 to 31 October 2007 inclusive.

 

CONFIRMATION OF MINUTES - Policy Review Committee Meeting - 8 October 2007

PRC 109  RESOLVED on the MOTION of Councillor Ross Fowler seconded Councillor Pat Sheehy AM that the minutes of the Policy Review Committee Meeting of 8 October 2007 be confirmed.

 

DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST

 There were no declarations of interest.

 

MASTER PROGRAM REPORTS

 

Leadership and Organisation

 

The Director City Strategy, Mr Alan Stoneham, gave a brief overview of the progress of the 2005-2009 Strategic Program –24 Month Review.  Presentations were then made, detailing the progress with the 2005-2009 Strategic Program.

 

Director – City Strategy (City Challenges)

·        Penrith Lakes – resolution of parkland management, funding model and Council’s continuing role in the planning process

·        Penrith City Centre Strategy and St Marys Town Centre Strategy – public and private investment and stakeholder engagement

·        Infrastructure – delivery, National Growth Areas Alliance Campaign ‘Fund the Gap’, State and Federal support necessary

·        Economic Development – review of model

 

Director – City Services

·        Children’s Services - Cooperative sustainability and Citywide Children’s Strategy

·        Magnetic Places – program and linkages to other Issues

·        Penrith Valley Cultural Precinct – well underway; delivery timetable and future management model

·        Library Directions Plan – implication for service delivery models

·        Entities – roles and relationships to be reviewed

 

Director – City Planning

·        Urban Development – Residential Strategy review, affordable housing, reforms to developer contributions

·        Integrated Land Use and Transport Strategy – ‘Buy in’ of State Government agencies and public transport providers

·        Nepean River – management and funding

·        Bushland Corridors – management

·        Climate Change – City and Council dimensions

 

His Worship the Mayor, Councillor Greg Davies left the meeting, the time being 8:35pm.

 

His Worship the Mayor, Councillor Greg Davies returned to the meeting, the time being 8:40pm.

 

Councillor Lexie Cettolin left the meeting, the time being 8:47pm, and did not return.

 

Director – City Operations

·        Recreation and Leisure – delivering facilities and services and review utilisation of existing facilities

·        Parks Asset and Tree Management – fixed asset renewal and management strategies

·        Public Domain Maintenance – link to the provision of safe and well maintained public space

 

Chief Financial Officer

·        Resourcing Council’s Program – maintaining a sound financial position with increasing budget pressures, infrastructure renewal and maintenance and rising community expectations

·        Funding CBD Improvements – Property Strategy to stimulate investment in the Centres

·        Services – improving service delivery

·        Information Management – online access to services and information

·        Governance – building on improvements

 

Councillor Jim Aitken OAM left the meeting, the time being 9:11pm.

 

Councillor Jim Aitken OAM returned to the meeting, the time being 9:14pm.

 

Director – City Strategy (Organisational challenges)

·        Workforce Strategy

·        Future industrial relations framework

·        Community Engagement

·        Formulating the next Strategic Plan and Program

 

 

General Manager (Concluding comments)

·        Strategic Program has set many stretch goals and there have been changes along the way.

·        Everything in Council’s Program is underway or has been discussed tonight. The Progress Review report shows that nothing has been lost off the agenda. Directors have identified the likely program delivery under current arrangements and any new approaches required.

·        Councillors can take the opportunity at this point to identify any areas of dissatisfaction with the responses outlined in the Review or the challenges discussed by the Directors in their presentation.

 

His Worship the Mayor, Councillor Greg Davies congratulated the General Manager, Directors and Council Officers on the progress to date.

 

1        2005-2009 Strategic Program - Mid-Term Review                                                          

PRC 110  RESOLVED on the MOTION of Councillor Pat Sheehy AM seconded Councillor Ross Fowler

That:

1.     The information contained in the report on 2005-2009 Strategic Program - Mid-Term Review be received

2.     The assignment of Issue 9 Recreation and Leisure to the Director - City Operations be endorsed

3.     A report be presented to Council that provides an update on the planning and construction of skate parks in the Penrith Local Government Area

4.     A memo be provided to all Councillors outlining the progress with the production of the next volume of the History of Penrith

5.     A report be presented to Council that provides an update on the savings achieved by Council over recent years in energy and water use and in carbon emissions, including financial savings

6.     A memo be provided to all Councillors on the traffic safety issues of the Mamre Rd/Erskine Park Rd intersection.

 

 

There being no further business the Chairperson declared the meeting closed the time being 9:36pm.

    



Item                                                                                                                                       Page

 

Leadership and Organisation

 

1        2007-2008 Management Plan - September Quarter Review

 

The City in its Broader Context

 

2        Draft Riverlink Precinct Plan 

 

3        Rezoning Application - Orchard Hills Preparatory School, Bringelly Road, Orchard Hills

 

4        Rezoning Proposals for Vincent Road, Cranebrook and The Northern Road, Glenmore Park

 

The City as a Social Place

 

5        Penrith Whitewater Stadium - Annual Report and Board of Directors

 

6        City of Penrith Regional Indoor Aquatic and Recreation Centre Ltd - Annual Report and Board of Directors

 

7        Caddens draft Local Environmental Plan - Boundary Amendment

 

8        Werrington Enterprise Living and Learning (WELL) Precinct - Draft Section 94 Development Contributions Plan

 

9        Werrington Enterprise Living and Learning (WELL) Precinct - Community Consultation

 

10      Erskine Business Park - Amendment to  Section 94 Development Contributions Plan 

 

11      Smoke Free Outdoor Policy and Cancer Incidence Mapping

 

The City In Its Environment

 

12      Penrith City Biodiversity Conservation 

   

Leadership and Organisation

 

13      Service Specification Program

 

14      Progress report on the Penrith City Council Business Continuity Plan

 

15      Annual Report 2006-2007

 

16      Grants Support Officer Temporary Role

 

 


Leadership and Organisation

 

Item                                                                                                                                       Page

 

1        2007-2008 Management Plan - September Quarter Review

 

 



Policy Review Committee Meeting

19 November 2007

Leadership and Organisation

 

 

Leadership and Organisation

 

 

1

2007-2008 Management Plan - September Quarter Review   

 

Compiled by:                Ken Lim, Organisational Development Co-ordinator

Geraldine Brown, Budget Accountant

Ross Kingsley, Corporate Development Manager

Authorised by:             Vicki O’Kelly, Acting Chief Financial Officer

Alan Travers, General Manager   

Strategic Program Term Achievement: Council's operating culture is flexible, efficient, integrated and aligned to Council's strategic objectives and program delivery.

Critical Action: Prepare, implement and review management plans and processes aligned to and consistent with Council’s Strategic Plan and Program.

     

Purpose:

To present the  September Quarter progress report on Council's 2007-2008 Management Plan. The report recommends that the Review be adopted, including revised estimates and expenditures as detailed in the report.

A copy of the progress report has been provided to Councillors under separate cover.

 

Background

In accordance with the Local Government Act 1993, the Management Plan Progress Report for the period ending 30 September 2007 is presented tonight for Council’s consideration.

 

This is the first quarterly review of Council’s 2007-2008 Management Plan, which is the third year of Council’s Strategic Plan for the City of Penrith 2005-2009, Penrith City: the Competitive Edge.

 

Managers have provided details of progress in accordance with their assigned accountabilities. This includes delivery of the ongoing requirements of services, progress of annual tasks and projects and performance against budget. Commentary has also been provided on key achievements for the year to date, as well as issues arising that have impacted on the delivery of the annual program.

 

The General Manager’s report in the document includes comments on key results and issues arising over the first quarter of the year and indicates the focus of organisational efforts for the remainder of 2007-08.

 

The Financial Services Manager’s report is also contained within the review document, and includes information on budget performance, significant issues and proposed variances.

 

 

 

 

Financial Position

Original Surplus

 

$15,241

F

 

 

 

 

 

1st Quarter Council approved variations:

 

 

 

 

Building Approvals Service variation

($6,254)

 

 

 

Financial Assistance Grant

$66,426

$60,172

F

 

 

 

 

 

 

September Review variations   

 

($10,426)

U

 

 

 

 

 

Revised Surplus

 

$64,987

F

 

The more significant variations (F – favourable, U- unfavourable) for the quarter include:

                                                                                                                                       000’s

Interest on loans

61.2

F

Principal repayments

61.9

F

Mobile Playvan

72.5

F

Civic Events

(50.5)

U

Merchant Fees

20

F

Transfer to Election Reserve

(100)

U

Transfer to Legal reserve

(60)

U

 

These together with minor variations and reallocations, are discussed in detail in the Financial Services Manager’s report in the summary review document.  Commentary is provided below on the more significant issues in the review.

 

Employee Leave Entitlements Reserve

Council policy is to maintain an amount of 20%, averaged over three years, of leave entitlements (excluding annual leave) in the Employee Leave Entitlements (ELE) Reserve.  This reserve has accumulated over the years and was holding 20.04% of entitlements at the end of June 2006.  The financial year 2006-07 again saw major transfers from the reserve to assist in meeting the costs of the resignation of a number of long serving employees.  The reserve currently holds funds equivalent to 17.5% of entitlements.  Analysis of employee leave entitlements, known and probable retirements indicates that a strategy to bring the reserve back up to the agreed 20% over the next two to three years requires a minimum $200,000 transfer to the reserve in 2007-08.  It was identified in the June Quarter Review that an appropriate way to build up this reserve was transfer salary savings to the reserve as they are identified during the year.  A total of $237,600 has been identified this quarter.  The reserve balance and the impact of employee movements will continue to be monitored closely.

Penrith City Children’s Services Co-operative

The Penrith City Children’s Services Co-operative had a budget for 2006-07 that had a break even result after a contribution of $69,000 from Council. The continuing trend of disappointing utilisation levels particularly in Long Day Care and Pre schools led to a number of centres reporting a loss for the year.  The net result for the Co-operative’s operations for the year was a deficit of $413,000.  $193,000 of these losses were able to be funded from reserves centres had built up from a number of years profits.  The balance ($220,000) was also offset against the relevant Reserves accounts however for these centres it gives them negative reserve balances.  It is expected that a formal request from the Board of the Co-operative will be received requesting funding for the centres without the capacity to offset the 2006-07 losses against accumulated reserves.

 

Re-votes

There are two adjustments to planned capital works funded from s94 contributions proposed for adoption this quarter:

·    The construction of the Department of Community Services building at St Marys funded from borrowings to be repaid by the Property Development Reserve has been delayed and $2m is proposed to be transferred to the 2008-09 budget.  As previously reported a preferred builder has been selected but protracted contract negotiations with the Department of Community Services has delayed the project. These negotiations are now concluded and construction work is expected to commence early December 2007 with a twelve month completion date.

·    The Glenmore Park Child and Family Precinct has been the subject of intensive planning and design to ensure that the completed project best meets the needs of the community. The Development Application was lodged in April 2007, and after an extensive assessment process a determination has been made. It is anticipated that the construction certificate will be lodged early in 2008.  A full report on the project to Council is planned for early 2008. The tender process will take approximately 6 to 8 weeks, the construction stage is then expected to commence in April or May 2008. The balance of the project will be completed in the 2008-09 financial year requiring $1.9m of s94 funds.

Format of the Quarterly Review

The adoption of the 2007-08 Management Plan by Council anticipated a revised performance reporting regime to address both Strategy and Service delivery, as reflected in the two volumes of the plan - Part A: Strategic Overview and Part B: Operational Plan and Budget.

 

The progress of Council’s Strategic Program and key issues will continue to be reported and discussed with Council every six months. This will be supplemented by more indepth discussions of particular issues or areas of the program. Strengthened measures for assessing the delivery of strategic and sustainability outcome measures are also being introduced and this is further discussed in a separate report to tonight’s meeting on the Annual Report.

 

As previously advised to Councillors, the quarterly Management Plan report to Council and the community is now clearly based on performance of the specified services through which Council’s operations are conducted, together with the usual financial statements and other required information.

 

The Quarterly Review provides a comprehensive progress report on the performance of all Council’s external and internal services (with the exception of the three controlled entities which have separate reporting requirements).

 

Reporting is based on the delivery of the annual program of activities, tasks and projects which was adopted by Council for each service through the Management Plan. The report contains:

·    An ‘executive summary’ of the quarter’s progress with commentary provided by the General Manager and Financial Services Manager together with key results and identification of any service areas requiring greater focus

·    A report on the overall performance, key performance indicators and tasks deliverable for each service, together with a formal budget statement for that service

·    Capital and operating projects progress (similar to previous reports but now arranged to align with the services)

·    Detailed financial statements and summaries.

 

The new services performance report which provides much of the basis of the review details the progress of the ongoing and annual deliverables of that service, with the exception of the capital and operating projects which are fully reported elsewhere in the document.

 

It is important to note that the simple expenditure budget snapshot provided under services is supplemented for each service by a fully detailed budget which includes any proposed variations.

Performance Assessment

The review documents incorporate detailed reporting on the year to date performance of each of the services from several principal aspects. These form the basis of the Overall Performance assessment of that service for the year to date. To that is added a Budget Performance snapshot as explained above.

 

The normal expected overall service performance for the first quarter of the year is 25%. However, note that some services (such as in the Operations directorate) are more dependent on the completion of particular projects or works programs, which will strongly influence the result. The model for service reporting is detailed in the review document.

 

The reportable elements of the Service from which its performance is assessed include:

·    Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) for ongoing requirements of the Service

·    Strategic Tasks which link Services to Council’s four year Strategic Program

·    Service Improvements identified through means including ongoing Services Review

·    Capital and Operating Projects funded in the annual program

          (NB not all Services contain all of these elements)

 

In addition to the particular KPIs and annual targets which Council adopted in the Management Plan, additional measures have been added to ensure that all the important ongoing activities of service specifications are incorporated. These more generic KPIs for the service have a set target of 100% of ongoing requirements. This approach is initiated in the present review and will be further developed and refined with Managers.

 

All reporting is in terms of year to date progress to fulfil the annual requirements of Council’s program.  Where actions have a life of more than one year, the report is on the performance for 2006-07. Those tasks and projects scheduled to commence after the first quarter are listed in the report but are not included in the performance ratings.

Management Plan Performance

From the statements provided by the responsible Managers against the deliverables as explained above, the results for the quarter are as identified in the following table.

 

Table 1. Service Performance Summary ~ September Quarter

 

SERVICE PERFORMANCE SUMMARY

Completed

GREEN

AMBER

RED

Not Yet Due to Start

Totals

SERVICES OVERALL      (Service Profile)

 

62

-

-

-

62

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)

 

211

9

9

-

229

Strategic Tasks (ST)

-

79

7

-

4

90

Service Improvements (SI)

-

52

2

-

1

55

Capital Projects

18

134

3

2

22

179

Operating Projects

10

106

-

-

6

122

The progress of Council’s program is expressed through the use of percentages and ‘traffic light’ indicators. These are based on the responsible Manager’s statement of the delivery of the annual requirements for that item.

 

Council has for a number of years used a traffic light rating scale for reporting on the performance of Management Plan deliverables. This is supplemented in the new report format by an appropriate rating scale for the expenditure budget performance of services. This new budget scale is adapted from that used in the monthly Financial Health monitoring by the organisation. The rating scales are explained in the table below.

 

Table 2. Guidelines for ‘Traffic Light’ Status Indicators

*

[Green]

General Performance:  Progress for the Year To Date is on target for annual requirements/completion of the relevant action. Normally indicates completion of 90%+ of the scheduled requirements.

Budget Performance:   Expenditure for the Year To Date is under budget by <=15% or over budget by <=5%.

*

[Amber]

General Performance:  Progress is marginal and extra attention is needed. Normally indicates completion of 75%-89% of the scheduled requirements Year To Date.

Budget Performance:   Expenditure for the Year To Date is under budget by >15% or over budget by 6-15%.

[Red]

General Performance:  Progress is not on target and requirement may not be delivered. This should be addressed by the Manager’s commentary. Performance is normally rated as less than 75% of the scheduled requirements Year To Date.

Budget Performance:   Expenditure for the Year To Date is over budget by >=16%.

Text Box: C

Completed (usually applies to Capital & Operating Projects with defined target dates).

 

Proposed Amendments to Service Elements

To deliver the annual requirements of the operational Management Plan, Council adopted as part of the service program a more detailed set of KPIs and actions. In a number of cases, the present review with its comprehensive assessment of service performance has identified proposed revisions to the detailed program for 2007-08. Any such proposals with a budget impact are directly addressed by the financial statements and commentary provided.

 

Subject to endorsement by Council, amendments to non-financial elements of the operational plan have been incorporated in the present review. These proposed changes are provided as Appendix A to this report.

 

Further Service Improvements which are identified through ongoing review and alignment of services or through the adoption of new policies or plans by Council will continue to be brought forward for confirmation in subsequent reports.

Alignment of the Organisation

During the first quarter of the present year, Council received two reports from the General Manager on alignment of the organisation and endorsed a number of changes to accountabilities and service and departmental arrangements. Those approved arrangements are reflected in the present review.

 

The most significant impact of these changes is in regard to the City Operations directorate. The new departments of City Works, Public Domain Amenity and Safety and Recreation and the service responsibilities of the relevant Manager positions are incorporated in the report. As these new positions are presently vacant, reporting has been provided by the relevant officers in acting positions.

 

In the case of the Recreation service, it is important to note that as the resourcing and budget of the service are still being confirmed, only limited information is provided in the present review. This will be confirmed and completed in the December Quarter report.

Special Initiatives

The 10-year special initiative, Asset Renewal and Established Areas (AREAS) Strategy, commenced on 1 July 2006. The AREAS funding from additional rate revenue approved by the Minister for Local Government, is for additional infrastructure renewal and public domain maintenance (which includes roads, buildings, graffiti removal and cleaning) as well as greater attention to the needs of our older neighbourhoods.

 

Council also continues to advance three 10-year special initiatives which commenced in 2002-2003, for which additional rate revenue was also approved by the Minister. These are:

·    Enhanced Environmental Program (EEP)

·    Community Safety and Neighbourhood Renewal Program

·    Economic Development and Tourism - support for Penrith Valley Economic Development Corporation (PVEDC)

 

As previously agreed by Council, specific reporting on the progress of each of these initiatives is presented to Council, the community and the Department of Local Government at six-monthly intervals, through the half-year and end-of-year Management Plan reviews and the Annual Report. In addition, more detailed reports on key aspects of the programs are provided to Council by the relevant Managers at appropriate intervals during each year.

 

In the present review, the progress of these programs is reported within the services format.

Conclusion

The review indicates substantial progress to meeting Council’s challenging annual program. In keeping with Council’s established practice the General Manager and Chief Financial Officer will not make a presentation at this time. Formal presentations are made at the mid-year and end of year reviews. The opportunity is, however, available for Council tonight to seek clarification or elaboration on particular matters in any section of the Progress Report.

 

The review documents will be placed, in full, on Council’s website, as well as being made available to the public in hard copy and CD versions on request, and through the Civic Centre, Queen St Centre and all libraries.

 

The new reporting approach introduced in this Quarterly Review aims to provide greater clarity and accountability to Council and the public on the annual delivery of Council’s program through its approved services and their required goals. This reflects both the service specifications in a highly practical way and how the strategy for the City which Council has set is being delivered by the organisation.

 

 

RECOMMENDATION

That:

1.     The information contained in the report on 2007-2008 Management Plan - September Quarter Review be received

2.     The 2007-2008 Management Plan Review as at 30 September 2007, including the revised estimates identified in the recommended budget, be adopted

3.     The recommended reallocations to projects and amendments to Key Performance Indicators, Strategic Tasks and Service Improvements detailed in the report be adopted.

 

ATTACHMENTS/APPENDICES

1. View

Proposed Amendments to Service Elements

5 Pages

Appendix

  


Policy Review Committee Meeting

19 November 2007

Appendix 1 - Proposed Amendments to Service Elements

 

 

 





  


The City in its Broader Context

 

Item                                                                                                                                       Page

 

2        Draft Riverlink Precinct Plan 

 

3        Rezoning Application - Orchard Hills Preparatory School, Bringelly Road, Orchard Hills

 

4        Rezoning Proposals for Vincent Road, Cranebrook and The Northern Road, Glenmore Park

 

 



Policy Review Committee Meeting

19 November 2007

The City in its Broader Context

 

 

The City in its Broader Context

 

 

2

Draft Riverlink Precinct Plan    

 

Compiled by:                Liza Cordoba, Senior Environmental Planner

Authorised by:             Ruth Goldsmith, Local Planning Manager   

Strategic Program Term Achievement: Penrith City Centre provides a comprehensive range of economic and human and lifestyle services to Outer Western Sydney and Central Western New South Wales.

Critical Action: Facilitate the implementation of the adopted Penrith City Centre Strategy.

     

Purpose:

To provide details on the status of the Riverlink Precinct Plan project.  The report recommends that the draft Riverlink Precinct Plan be endorsed for public consultation.

 

Background

Council has, for some time, been considering the future use of land in the area generally bounded by the Main Western Railway, the Nepean River, Mulgoa Road and Jamison Road (see attached map).  Other key landowners in the area, including Panthers and its partner ING Real Estate, and the Blaikie Road landowners group, have also been examining their future options.  This report advises Council on the current status of the planning study for the area, which has been titled ‘Riverlink’.  A site plan is appended to this report.

 

In October 2000, Council engaged Devine Erby Maslin (DEM) to prepare a planning and urban design concept over Council’s land known as the ‘Carpenter site’, resulting in the development of nine options for the site.  A Working Party was established to refine the options proposed and in August 2003, Councillors indicated a preference for the following land uses to be located if possible, on the Carpenter site:

·           A 5 star hotel

·           Botanic Garden (being a recreation park incorporating a sculpture garden, multi purpose interpretive garden, children’s play area and outdoor performance space

·           Boutique style shopping in a theme precinct

·           Conference centre incorporating a sporting complex

·           Exhibition centre/ trade hall

·           Housing for older persons/ nursing home

·           Interstate Coach Terminal

·           Market area

·           Museum providing a cultural showcase possibly in association with the Australian Museum and Art Gallery

·           Pedestrian level bridge connecting through to the Civic Centre

·           Restaurant

·           Serviced apartments

·           Tourist or Visitor information centre

·           Travel agent

·           Upmarket residential apartments/ SOHO apartments

 

The preferred built form was for:

·           an iconic landmark building that will create a centre for the City

·           a high rise development

·           development that incorporates ESD principles and new technology (that can be used as a demonstration site), and

·           development that is marketable and can be used to showcase the City and surrounding regions.

 

In 2006, Landcom (on behalf of Council) and Panthers undertook a study of the ‘Carpenter site’ and Woodriff Gardens (both owned by Council), and Panthers’ landholding, with the boundary extending between the Main Western Railway and Jamison Road.  That study (prepared by Cité Urban Strategies) confirmed a similar range of land uses to those agreed by Councillors in 2003 (listed above).  These land uses were considered appropriate to build on the status of Penrith as a Regional City, and to enhance the links between the City Centre and the Nepean River.  It was assumed that the residential area in and around Ladbury Avenue would continue in a similar built form to that found at present.

 

At the same time, landowners in the Blaikie Road area were conducting their own land capability investigations.  This provided an opportunity for the landowners to understand the opportunities and constraints (particularly the flooding issues) through the work of their own consultants.

 

At the briefing of 18 October 2006, Councillors were presented with the outcomes of the draft Cité study.  Councillors requested that the study area be extended to the M4 Motorway, to include the Blaikie Road area, and generally supported the directions of the draft study, including the gap analysis of land uses that are needed to enhance Penrith’s role as a Regional City.

 

The draft Precinct Plan therefore recognises the directions of this earlier study, and Council’s request to extend the study boundary.  This ensures that proposed projects in the Precinct take into account the future development potential of other lands within the Precinct, particularly in relation to the cumulative impacts of flooding.

Current Planning Processes

Earlier this year, Panthers/ ING Real Estate expressed a desire to develop a masterplan for their site, to provide certainty regarding the overall growth opportunities, and guide future development.  Council officers advised Panthers / ING Real Estate that an overarching plan for the whole Riverlink Precinct was required before a masterplan for the site could be developed.

 

The Precinct Plan sets the framework for future development in the whole precinct, and ensures that elements such as access, traffic, flood impacts and land uses are determined in the context of the broader area.  The Precinct Plan also needs to respond to Penrith's status as a Regional City, by identifying land uses that would contribute to the vitality and viability of the City, and also provide better links to the Nepean River.

 

The identification of appropriate land uses will primarily be determined by the flood hazard risk assessment.  A final determination of the flood impacts relies on the completion of the review of Nepean River flood modelling however, in the meantime, the draft Precinct Plan is being progressed on the basis of the 1 in 100 flood level currently affecting the Precinct.

 

The task of progressing a Precinct Plan is Council’s responsibilities, however Panthers/ ING Real Estate were advised that Council officers had no spare capacity to undertake the task at this time, as the Penrith City Centre Plans were being finalised for gazettal, and the draft Penrith LEP 2008 (Stage 1) and the draft Penrith DCP 2008 (Stage 1) were being finalised for exhibition.

 

To enable their plans to advance, Panthers/ ING Real Estate subsequently engaged Cox Richardson and Manidis Roberts to develop the Precinct Plan as a precursor to their more detailed masterplan.  The draft Riverlink Precinct Plan has been prepared in collaboration with Council officers, and is the outcome of an examination of the area’s constraints and opportunities.

 

The draft Precinct Plan has also been discussed with the representatives of two other key landowners, being the consultant representing the Blaikie Road landowners group, and Council’s Property Development Manager.  Council, at its Briefing Session of 12 November 2007, were also given a presentation on the draft Riverlink Precinct Plan.

Draft Riverlink Precinct Plan

The draft Riverlink Precinct Plan contains information relating to the site analysis, including zoning, existing development, topography, flooding, existing open space, significant vegetation and landscape corridors, views, major intersections, traffic and access, and a summary of the opportunities and constraints.

 

The draft plan for the Riverlink Precinct incorporates the following urban design principles:

·           Creating a cohesive and well connected precinct

·           Enhancing and activating Mulgoa Road as a significant approach to Penrith City Centre

·           Reinforcing key intersections as gateways to the Precinct and the Penrith City Centre

·           Creating a clear and legible public domain framework of streets and open space

·           Creating a new north-south access link between Jamison Road and the Great Western Highway

·           Extending Ransley Street west through the Panthers site to allow access to Peach Tree Creek

·           Creating an exciting core of entertainment, leisure and lifestyle uses around the existing club

·           Incorporating sustainability best practice

·           Connecting Riverlink pathways with the Great River Walk

·           Encouraging views of the mountains from the public domain

·           Encouraging design excellence

·           Improving connectivity through the Precinct

·           Enhancing Peach Tree Creek

The Precinct Plan proposes activity nodes focused on:

·           Entertainment, tourism, leisure and lifestyle

·           Mixed use

·           Residential

·           Flood compatible uses

·           Employment

·           District community and cultural facilities

·           Open space.

 

There are varying degrees of flood hazard, based on a flood event.  ‘Flood compatible uses’ are uses located on land that is affected by the 1 in 100 flood event are typically those that do not unduly compromise human safety or other development because of its use, location, or other physical constraints such as evacuation.  It is envisaged that the subsequent studies informing the masterplan process will identify specific land uses that minimise those risks, for example non-residential development.

 

The draft Precinct Plan map is appended to this report.  The draft Riverlink Precinct Plan document, containing the sections outlined above, will be used for the public consultation process.

Next Steps

This report seeks Council’s endorsement to consult landowners in the Riverlink Precinct regarding the draft Precinct Plan.  If endorsed, it is intended to publicly exhibit the draft Precinct Plan and consult with landowners within the Riverlink Precinct.

 

Completion of the review of the Nepean River flood modelling study is critical in determining the flood hazard risk assessment for the precinct to enable the next level of study, the masterplanning process, to define the ‘footprint’ of suitable land uses across the precinct.

 

The draft Riverlink Precinct Plan process currently falls between the timing for the two stages of the Penrith LEP 2008 and Penrith DCP 2008.  It is envisaged that the adopted Riverlink Precinct Plan would be incorporated in Stage 2 of the LEP and DCP.

 

In the meantime, to provide guidance for the preparation of the more detailed masterplan for the Panthers / ING Real Estate properties, it will be recommended that the draft Riverlink Precinct Plan be endorsed by Council, after exhibition, as an interim policy.  This is an approach that was used during the preparation of the draft Penrith City Centre plans, where specific development proposals generated the need for more detailed planning controls and guidance ahead of the draft plans.

Conclusion

The preparation of the draft Riverlink Precinct Plan is a key step in providing clarity and policy direction for the development opportunities that may occur in future in the precinct.

 

Following consultation with landowners, the outcomes of the public exhibition will be reported to Council.  If supported by Council, the Riverlink Precinct Plan will be endorsed as an interim policy.  This Precinct Plan will then guide the preparation of more detailed plans for individual properties or landholdings within the area, within the context of a significant precinct that links a Regional City Centre and its River.

 

 

RECOMMENDATION

That:

1.     The information contained in the report on Draft Riverlink Precinct Plan  be received

2.     The land owners in the Riverlink Precinct be consulted and invited to comment on the draft Riverlink Precinct Plan

3.     The outcomes of the consultation process be reported to Council.

 

ATTACHMENTS/APPENDICES

1. View

Riverlink Precinct Map

1 Page

Appendix

2. View

Draft Riverlink Precinct Plan

1 Page

Appendix

  


Policy Review Committee Meeting

19 November 2007

Appendix 1 - Riverlink Precinct Map

 

 

 

 


Policy Review Committee Meeting

19 November 2007

Appendix 2 - Draft Riverlink Precinct Plan

 

 

 

 


Policy Review Committee Meeting

19 November 2007

The City in its Broader Context

 

 

The City in its Broader Context

 

 

3

Rezoning Application - Orchard Hills Preparatory School, Bringelly Road, Orchard Hills   

 

Compiled by:                Brad Roeleven, Contract Planner

Authorised by:             Ruth Goldsmith, Local Planning Manager   

Strategic Program Term Achievement: Council's agreed strategies, where they relate to planning provisions, are implemented through the new Citywide Penrith Local Plan and Penrith Development Control Plan.

Critical Action: Develop the Citywide Penrith Local Plan and Development Control Plan by March 2009, as agreed with the Department of Planning.

     

Purpose:

To inform Council of a rezoning application which seeks to amend provisions within Sydney Regional Environmental Plan 25 - Orchard Hills to allow for the expansion of Orchard Hills Preparatory School.  This report recommends that Council prepare and exhibit the proposed zoning amendment.

 

Introduction

On 18 November 2005, Ingham Planning Pty Limited, on behalf of The Pared Foundation, lodged a rezoning application with Council for land in Bringelly Road, Orchard Hills.  The purpose of the application is to enable a significant expansion of Orchard Hills Preparatory School.

 

The applicant for the rezoning proposal is Ingham Planning Pty Ltd and the owner of the property is The Pared Foundation.  The site is described as Lots 201 & 202 DP1021191, and Lots 11 & 12 DP1037710 Bringelly Road, Orchard Hills.  The applicant has requested Council’s consideration of a ‘stand alone’ amendment to Sydney Regional Environmental Plan 25 – Orchard Hills to enable the proposal to advance more quickly than the draft Penrith Local Plan 2008 – Stage 1.

Background

In July 2005, the applicant submitted a draft report outlining an intention to seek a rezoning of land around the existing school site to enable an expansion of the school to accommodate up to 800 students from Kindergarten to Year 12.

 

Council advised that proposal was a significant overdevelopment of the site, which would result in adverse outcomes.  Concerns were also raised that a site specific amendment to SREP 25 would be inconsistent with the advice from the Department of Planning regarding ‘spot rezonings’, Council’s criteria for site specific rezonings, and its program for a timely completion of Penrith’s Citywide Local Environmental Plan.  Notwithstanding this advice, the applicant subsequently lodged the rezoning application on 18 November 2005.

 

A Briefing Session on 31 July 2006 provided Councillors with an update on the status of over 30 rezoning requests and development proposals current at that time, and an opportunity to consider information relating to each of the proposals.  The proposal to rezone this site was presented to Councillors as part of that Briefing Session.

 

On a number of occasions, the applicant expressed concern about the potential of being ‘caught up’ in the Local Plan process, as a specific timeframe needed to be met to allow the school to continue to properly respond to their student numbers.  The applicant was advised that, in the circumstances, a ‘stand alone’ amendment to Sydney Regional Environmental Plan 25 – Orchard Hills could be presented to Council for its consideration.

 

In December 2006, the applicant was provided with detailed advice outlining a range of concerns that warranted either a reconsideration of the proposal, or the submission of additional information.  Those matters were then the subject of further investigation and negotiation, resulting in the receipt of additional information on 8 August 2007.

The Site

The site, located on the eastern side of Bringelly Road and also bounded by Caddens Road and Quigg Place, has a total area of 3.15 hectares and is mostly cleared, excepting a stand of mature trees located midway way along the southern site boundary.  The current campus comprises a school administration building (formerly a dwelling), a number of single storey school classrooms, a shade structure, car park, and in the north western corner, an open grassed stormwater detention basin.  A site map of the property and its surrounds is appended to this report, together with a plan of the proposed development.

Current planning controls

The existing school site, and the adjacent land the expanded school seeks to occupy, is currently zoned 1(b) Rural under Sydney Regional Environmental Plan No.25 – Orchard Hills (SREP 25).  The objectives of this zone are to:

 

(a)     Protect and promote rural land uses,

(b)     Protect and promote the scenic qualities of the rural landscape,

(b1)   Ensure that development of land along main and arterial roads does not detract from the rural landscape,

(c)     Allow development consistent with the land capabilities, rural aesthetics and rural economics,

(d)     Identify certain areas suitable for more intensive rural settlement subject to certain environmental, design and servicing constraints, and

(e)     Protect certain areas, which have long term urban potential, from development which would jeopardise that potential.

 

SREP 25 prohibits educational establishments on land in the 1(b) Rural zone.  The SREP, however, specifically prescribes that the land on which the current school is located can be used as an infant’s school, with a maximum of 90 students.  The use was permitted on this site through an amendment to SREP 25 in 1999, with the student numbers capped to ensure that the amenity of the neighbourhood was not adversely affected by a use that was otherwise deemed to be inappropriate in the rural areas.

 

This land is also within ‘Area D’ of SREP 25.  The objective of this designation is to enable the land to function as a transitional zone between the urban area to the west and the larger lot rural residential area to the east and south-east.  The SREP provides specific controls for subdivision, the location of proposed buildings that promotes a low density settlement pattern, servicing and protection and preservation of the rural landscape quality along The Northern Road.

 

SREP 25 is supported by Orchard Hills Development Control Code No.2, which contains various principles and provisions to guide development on matters including protection of the area’s landscape and scenic qualities, water cycle management, building design, form and location, parking, traffic, advertising and retention of vegetation.

The Proposal

This application seeks to amend Sydney Regional Environmental Plan 25 - Orchard Hills to enable the existing school to expand onto adjoining land and accommodate a girl’s school of 375 pupils from Kindergarten to Year 12.  The expansion of the school is described on a masterplan prepared by Noel Bell Ridley Smith and Partners, Architects, a copy of which is attached to this report.  In summary the masterplan provides for:

 

·          Demolition of all existing buildings and structures

·          Construction of a new school campus comprising numerous buildings and facilities set in a linear form adjacent to the southern property boundary, and extending for the majority of the length of the site

·          Buildings closest to Bringelly Road being of two storeys, with buildings over the central and rear section of the site being single storey

·          Expansion of the existing car park at the south west corner of the site, which will incorporate bus bays

·          Maintaining access and egress to Bringelly Road.

 

This proposal varies the earlier, draft rezoning proposal of July 2005 by:

 

  • Reducing student numbers from 800 to 375
  • Reducing the height of buildings over the central and rear sections of the site to be predominantly single storey
  • Reducing the number of parking spaces
  • Removing access off Quigg Place, and
  • Providing additional landscaped area.

 

Importantly however, despite reducing student numbers by half, the current scheme maintains essentially the same footprint as the original July 2005 proposal.

Related development applications

Development Consent 06/0273 was granted by Council in August 2006 for the construction of a new two storey school building on this site.  No public submissions were received to the application.  Key points noted in the assessment of that application are:

 

 

·           No increase in student numbers

·           Removal of some existing demountable buildings, and an increase in parking

·           Proposal considered to be an appropriate transition between semi-rural residential and adjacent urban developments

·           Built form/scale / presentation, in conjunction with siting and landscaping, considered to achieve satisfactory outcome on visual impact for setting of site.

 

This building comprises part of the semi-circular two storey building, at the Bringelly Road frontage of the site, described on the masterplan submitted with this rezoning application.

Criteria for the assessment of ‘stand alone’ Local Environmental Plans

Council

In April 2005 the Department of Planning requested that Councils, where possible, avoid resolving to prepare minor amendments to existing plans, to ensure that resources are focused on the preparation of new Local Plans in accordance with the Standard Instrument (Local Environmental Plan) Order 2006.  In response to that request, at its meeting on 6 June 2005, Council resolved in part that:

“2.       Consideration of support will only apply to a site-specific rezoning proposal (amending existing planning instrument/s), where the proposal –

(a)     demonstrates social and economic benefit to the City’s communities; and

(b)     delivers an exceptional planning response; and

(c)     meets the recommended (Department of Planning) criteria, being that the rezoning proposal

(i)      facilitates employment generating development

(ii)     brings provisions in line with State Government policy

(iii)    implements agreed strategic directions for the area.

3.         Site-specific rezoning proposals that do not meet the criteria outlined in (2) above will not be supported.”

 

The applicant contends, and it is agreed, that this proposal demonstrates social and economic benefit to the Penrith City community given that it –

 

·           is a direct investment in the Penrith LGA with staged construction and enrolments not completed until 2020

·           will meet the growing demand for independent education facilities to serve the western region of Sydney

·           indirectly, it will increase the attractiveness for business’s to invest and relocate to the Penrith LGA where a range of social and community services and facilities to support working families.

 

The applicant also argues that the proposal delivers an exceptional planning response given that the planning response to this site is thorough and comprehensive; significant detail has been provided through Council’s requirements for a masterplan; and the level of planning and technical study over an extended period with the involvement of award winning school architects demonstrates that an exceptional response has been undertaken.

 

Whilst the submission of a masterplan, regardless of the extent to which it is supported by technical information, does not of itself demonstrate an exceptional planning response, it is accepted that an expanded school campus, in terms of a land use, is appropriate for the setting, context and function of this land and that the option remains to seek an improved design outcome at the development application stage.

Department of Planning

Since 2005, the Department of Planning’s LEP Review Panel has been in operation.  Its function is to ensure that amendments to planning instruments meet the Departments’ own criteria before they are able to progress.  All proposed amendments to existing planning instruments are subject to review by the Panel.

 

Six categories of LEP amendments have been identified, and a set of evaluation criteria for each LEP category has been developed.  The Panel will be guided by these criteria.  This proposal falls with Category 1 (spot rezoning) because the proposed amendment to SREP 25 seeks to change controls that relate to the development of a specific site.  Evaluation suggests that the proposed rezoning generally meets the criteria for a Category 1 rezoning.

Rural Lands Study and schools/places of public worship in rural zones

On 29 September 2003 Council adopted the Rural Lands Strategy but called for a further report on the appropriateness of schools and places of public worship in Orchard Hills.  On 8 March 2004 Council considered such a report and resolved, in part, that:

·           Council support, in principle, the prohibition of new schools and places of public worship in the City’s rural lands, with the exception of the rural villages, identified in the Rural Lands Strategy

·           Proposals for the expansion of existing schools and places of public worship must be accompanied by a masterplan of the future development boundaries of the site, and will be considered on their merits.

 

This application is consistent with that resolution to the extent that a masterplan has been provided.

Draft Penrith Local Environmental Plan 2008 – Stage 1

This plan proposes to repeal SREP 25 and zone the land the subject of this application ‘RU4 Rural Small Holdings’.  The objectives of this zone are to:

 

·           Enable small scale sustainable primary industry and other compatible land uses.

·           Maintain the rural and scenic character of the land.

·           Ensure the form, siting, colour and material of buildings and landscaping complement the scenic and rural quality of the landscape.

·           Ensure that development does not unreasonably increase the demand for public services or public facilities.

·           Minimise conflict between land uses within the zone and adjoining zones.

·           Ensure land uses are compatible with the environmental capabilities of the land, and preserve and improve natural resources through appropriate land management practices.

·           Ensure traffic generating land uses are suitably located so as to not adversely affect the safety and efficiency of roads.

·           Ensure views and vistas from main roads and other vantage points are not adversely affected.

·           Ensure land uses do not adversely affect the amenity of existing residents and the locality.

 

Options for making schools and places of public worship permissible in the RU4 zone, subject to locational and other criteria, are currently being considered by Council officers.  This approach needs to be confirmed with the Department of Planning as part of the discussions regarding the draft Penrith LEP 2008 (Stage 1).  Notwithstanding how the general approach to schools and places of public worship in the rural lands unfolds, the current (and, subject to Council’s endorsement, the expanded) school site will be included in the draft Penrith LEP 2008 (Stage 1) as a specific use permitted on this land.

Planning Assessment

Land contamination

This rezoning application is accompanied by a Stage 1 Preliminary Contamination Assessment report, prepared by Geotechnique Pty Ltd, which has been assessed by Council staff.  It is considered appropriate for the Stage 2 contamination report to be completed and submitted for assessment in conjunction with any future development application for the expansion of the School, should the rezoning proceed, and that the requirements of SEPP 55 have been properly addressed.

Design issues

It is particularly relevant to note that although the masterplan accompanying this application proposes accommodation and facilities for a student enrolment of 375, the footprint of the campus is essentially the same as the original scheme which intended to accommodate 800 students.

 

The analysis of design issues associated with the masterplan has been the subject of considerable investigation by Council staff.  A range of likely adverse landscape and visual amenity impacts have been identified resulting from the siting, massing and scale of the proposed school campus, as described on the masterplan.  The concerns identified with the masterplan scheme included the large massing of buildings, the potential impact on future orderly subdivision of land in Quigg Place, stormwater and drainage management, the rural landscape setting, and the proposed removal of existing trees.

 

These matters were conveyed to the applicant in conjunction with a request to undertake further investigations to inform the preparation of a revised masterplan that would overcome these concerns.  The proponent responded to these matters by way of formal submission outlining the following:

 

·           The proximity of buildings to each other is necessary to achieve functional spaces interconnection, safety, movement through the campus.  The only two storey elements of the campus are already approved under DA 06/0273, and the remainder of the campus is single storey, and set well back from public areas.

·           No other form of development would achieve the extent of setbacks proposed by this development.  Single storey buildings are set back over 100m from Bringelly Road.

·           Only a minor element of the school building is less than 15m from Quigg Place and would be well screened by landscaping.  The site would also be comprehensively landscaped.

·           Although zoned rural, given the nature of surrounding land uses, the site has a transitional character.  The proposal retains over 8000m2 of open space at corner of Bringelly and Caddens Roads which significantly contributes to the landscape and visual amenity.  This is a better result than if the separate lots were individually developed with houses and ancillary buildings.

·           The curved nature of the built form will soften the appearance of the complex when viewed from Bringelly Road, and any form of development would result in loss of views of the existing trees.

 

A revised masterplan was subsequently received incorporating the following design amendments, the purpose of which is to create some visual permeability through the centrally located, curved, building:

 

·           Creation of two mid-block void areas within the central, crescent shaped building, located adjacent to Quigg Place.

·           Separating the single storey building adjacent to the southern site boundary, at the rear of the site, into two structures.

·           Increasing the separation between the central, crescent shaped building, and the adjacent games court.

 

There remains a clear anomaly with the footprint of the campus remaining essentially the same as that which the proponent originally nominated when the school was anticipating a campus for 800 students, rather than the 375 enrolments now proposed.  If the student population is to be effectively halved, it is considered that there should be some opportunity for the campus to be altered to more closely align with desired built form outcomes.  These matters can be further explored with the applicant via the development application process.

Traffic, parking and access

Accompanying the rezoning application is a Traffic and Parking Report by Project Planning Associates.  Whilst a number of matters, including traffic distribution and student catchment areas, traffic impacts assessments on intersections, pedestrian safety and arrangements for bus services still need to be addressed, it is considered reasonable to defer resolution of these matters for consideration with any formal development application for the future expansion of the school, should the rezoning proceed.

Quigg Place extension

The applicant’s position on these matters is that the school does not propose any vehicular access from Quigg Place, or any works in Quigg Place, and that the masterplan includes a suitable setback to Quigg Place to allow for the extension of that road if it is required in the future.  It is concluded that the future opportunity for the extension of Quigg Place can be achieved by including a suitable provisions in the amendment to SREP 25 should Council resolve to proceed with this matter.

 

Biodiversity

Examination of biodiversity matters confirmed that it would be reasonable to defer resolution of these matters to consideration of any formal development application for the future expansion of the school, should the rezoning proceed.

Drainage and overland flow

While assessment of this Strategy by Council staff identified various design concerns that warranted further consideration, these matters are essentially technical, and could reasonably be deferred for resolution with any formal development application for the future expansion of the school, should the rezoning proceed.

Noise

Accompanying this application is a Noise Assessment report prepared by Renzo Tonin and Associates, which seeks to quantify noise impacts from key elements of the proposed expansion of the school, including noise from playing fields, use of the gymnasium and classrooms, and increased traffic.  Consideration of this report has indicated that the rezoning/development can comply with relevant noise standards and legislation with suitable noise attenuation measures in place as necessary.

Heritage

The ‘best practice’ approach for any rezoning proposal is the submission of an Aboriginal Heritage Assessment report, which was requested of the proponent.  The applicant is of the view that such an investigation is not warranted given the highly disturbed nature of the site, and the extent of development of the existing school.  Should Council endorse the public exhibition of this proposed amendment to SREP 25, Council will consult with the Deerubbin Local Aboriginal Land Council.

Conclusion

Council has previously considered, in detail, issues relating to schools in Orchard Hills and resolved that any proposal for the expansion of existing schools would be considered on their merits, and must be supported by a masterplan.  Opportunities remain to pursue an improved masterplan outcome through further negotiations with the applicant, the inclusion of appropriate controls within the amending provisions to SREP 25 necessary to permit the expansion of the school campus, and the subsequent assessment of any development application lodged for this site.

 

The current (and, subject to Council’s endorsement, the expanded) school site will be included in the draft Penrith LEP 2008 (Stage 1) as a specific use permitted on this land.  However, given the applicant’s expressed concerns about the timing of the ‘Local Plan’ process, it is recommended that a ‘stand alone’ amendment to Sydney Regional Environmental Plan 25 – Orchard Hills is also pursued, with Council’s support.

 

It is therefore recommended that Council commence the preparation of a draft amendment to Sydney Regional Environmental Plan 25 - Orchard Hills to enable expansion of the campus and student enrolments of the Orchard Hills Preparatory School at Bringelly Road, Orchard Hills.

 

 

RECOMMENDATION

That:

1.     The information contained in the report on Rezoning Application - Orchard Hills Preparatory School, Bringelly Road, Orchard Hills, be received

2.     Pursuant to section 54 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979, and Regulation, Council prepare and exhibit an amendment to Sydney Regional Environmental Plan 25 –Orchard Hills for Lots 201 & 202 DP1021191, and Lots 11 & 12 DP1037710 Bringelly Road, Orchard Hills.

3.     Council seek a “Written Authorisation to Exercise Delegation’ from the Director-General of the Department of Planning, to exhibit the draft amendment pursuant to section 65 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979, and Regulation.

 

 

ATTACHMENTS/APPENDICES

1. View

Site map

1 Page

Appendix

2. View

Proposed school expansion

1 Page

Appendix

  


Policy Review Committee Meeting

19 November 2007

Appendix 1 - Site map

 

 

 

 


Policy Review Committee Meeting

19 November 2007

Appendix 2 - Proposed school expansion

 

 

 

 


Policy Review Committee Meeting

19 November 2007

The City in its Broader Context

 

 

The City in its Broader Context

 

 

4

Rezoning Proposals for Vincent Road, Cranebrook and The Northern Road, Glenmore Park   

 

Compiled by:                Terry Agar, Planning Policy Unit Co-ordinator

Mark Broderick, Release Area Unit Coordinator

Authorised by:             Ruth Goldsmith, Local Planning Manager

Roger Nethercote, Environmental Planning Manager   

Strategic Program Term Achievement: Council's agreed strategies, where they relate to planning provisions, are implemented through the new Citywide Penrith Local Plan and Penrith Development Control Plan.

Critical Action: Develop the Citywide Penrith Local Plan and Development Control Plan by March 2009, as agreed with the Department of Planning.

     

Purpose:

To provide Councillors with an update on the status of proposals to rezone the former Air Services Australia land in Cranebrook and The Northern Road at Glenmore Park.  The report recommends that Council request the Department of Planning not to proceed with the submission of the rezoning proposals, that Council formally oppose the listing of the sites on the Metropolitan Development Program and that Council request further dialogue with the Department of Planning in relation to the process for securing rezonings outside of the existing Local Planning framework and statutory arrangements.

 

Background

Council received advice from the Department of Planning (DoP) around 10 October 2007 that a number of rezoning requests have been lodged, and that it intends to forward the proposals to the Metropolitan Development Program (MDP) Land Supply CEO’s Group for consideration.  Those proposals included a residential development on the former AirServices land at Cranebrook, and residential development on The Northern Road, Glenmore Park.

 

Councillors last considered a proposal to redevelop the former AirServices land at Cranebrook at a Briefing Session on 31 July 2006.  Just prior to that Briefing, on Saturday 29 July 2006, there was also a Field Inspection to the former Air Services land at Cranebrook.  The owners of the former Air Services land have, more recently, been primarily negotiating with the State Government’s Department of Planning.

 

At the time of the earlier Briefing, it was anticipated that these proposals would be considered in Stage 2 of the Penrith Local Plan, as further detailed investigations (particularly biodiversity and heritage conservation) were required prior to determining the appropriate land use options.  Since the Briefing last year, the Cranebrook proposal has been the subject of a pilot study for the biobanking scheme being established by the Department of Environment and Climate Change.

 

It was therefore of surprise to Council officers to learn that these proposals were proposed to be considered by the Metropolitan Development Program (MDP) Land Supply CEO’s Group in November 2007.  Whilst there had been an indication that the Cranebrook proposal would be presented to this group at some stage, no information had been submitted to Council for review until the Sustainability Assessments were received, without prior discussion, 4 weeks ago.

 

By way of background, the Metropolitan Development Program (MDP) is the State Government’s key program for managing land and housing supply and in assisting infrastructure and service co-ordination in metropolitan Sydney and the Central Coast.  The program addresses the supply of new dwellings in both existing urban areas and new release areas, which are typically located in the metropolitan region’s outer suburbs.  The Land Supply CEO’s Group was only recently established.  It is the vehicle through which the Government considers the addition of lands to the MDP.  We have sought clarity from DoP about the actual process and Council’s role, but this has not been provided.

 

1.     Former ASA land, Cranebrook

 

The Site

 

The site has an area of 181.11 hectares, and is located to the north of the Cranebrook urban area (bounded by the Northern Road, Cranebrook Road and Vincent Road).  The land is currently zoned Special Uses 5(a) – Wireless Station under Penrith Local Environmental Plan No. 201.  The zoning limits development to those land uses normally associated with its former use as a wireless station.  Any proposal to develop this land for uses other than a wireless station would require Council or the Government to first consider and support a proposal for rezoning.

 

The site is relatively flat, with evidence of some clearing, and is now unoccupied.  The NPWS 2002 vegetation maps of Western Sydney identify three vegetation community types on the site.  They are Cooks River/Castlereagh Ironbark Forest, Shale Gravel Transition Forest and Castlereagh Scribbly Gum Woodland.  The former two communities are listed as ‘Endangered Ecological Communities’ under the NSW Threatened Species Conservation Act, 1995 (TSC Act).  The land is also understood to contain at least two species of plants that are listed as vulnerable under the NSW TSC Act.  They are Dillwynia tenuifolia and Grevillea juniperina.  A map of the site is appended to this report, and a plan showing the proposal is attached.

 

Background

 

The former Civil Aviation Authority (later called AirServices Australia) advised Council in the early 1990s that the subject site was surplus to the Federal Government's needs.  It was excluded from the Rural Lands Strategy, which was adopted in September 2003, as Council recognised the need for further comprehensive planning investigations, prior to endorsing future directions for this land.

 

A meeting was held between ASA representatives and Council staff in November 2003 to discuss the future of this site, and the necessary steps to be taken to further explore its land capability.  When Council subsequently started receiving enquiries concerning the land, it sought clarification from ASA (in July 2004) regarding their current position, and whether they were planning to dispose of the land.  Council also sought a commitment from ASA that the land would not be sold before proper processes were established to ensure an appropriate planning outcome was reached for the land.  Notwithstanding Council’s approaches, the land was subsequently sold in September 2004.

 

The new owner of the site, Infracorp Limited, consulted with Council regarding the appropriate process for consideration of future potential land uses, and undertook planning investigations to determine the land’s capabilities and constraints, and to identify appropriate potential future land uses.  Infracorp’s consultants completed a range of studies for the site, with a view to submitting a formal rezoning application.  The key issues investigated include biodiversity values and their conservation, Aboriginal and European heritage values and their conservation, traffic, water cycle management, bushfire risk, contamination, and potential future site and building design.  Infracorp expressed a commitment to using the studies to determine the capability of the land, and identify an appropriate land use outcome for the ‘developable’ areas of the site (possibly large lot residential) that would fund, in perpetuity, a trust to manage the areas of significant biodiversity and heritage.

 

Council, relevant State Government agencies, such as the Department of Planning (DoP) and the Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC), were consulted about these studies. This consultation has continued as the matter has progressed.

 

Relationship to the Local Plan process

 

Consideration of a range of site specific proposals at a Councillor Briefing Session on 31 July 2006 suggested that those particular proposals were worthy of further assessment and negotiation.

 

A formal rezoning application was subsequently lodged on 15 September 2006.  This application generally proposed large lot residential on the western half of the site, and a biodiversity conservation area on the eastern half of the site.

 

Position of the Department of Environment and Climate Change (DECC)

 

In responding to Council’s section 62 consultation letter for the Local Plan, DEC (now DECC) indicated that the whole site was worthy of protection for its biodiversity and Aboriginal heritage values.  Since that advice, Infracorp’s consultants have met with DECC to discuss the Department’s proposed biodiversity banking and offset scheme, and its potential applicability to this site.

 

In mid 2007 the subject land was included in a pilot program conducted by DECC of the draft BioBanking assessment methodology prior to commencement of the Biodiversity Banking and Offsets Scheme.  It is understood that DECC has been assessing and reviewing the BioBanking assessment methodology used in that trial, and that a revised methodology is likely to be publicly exhibited in November 2007, and implemented in March 2008.  The landowner appears to have now withdrawn from participation in the BioBanking pilot program.

 

Position of the Department of Planning (DoP)

 

Arising from a meeting held at Council on 29 March 2007, the Department of Planning issued formal advice to the proponent on 11 May 2007, confirming the manner in which this matter could progress.  In summary the DoP advised:

·    The proponent should continue to liaise with the DECC to establish which areas of the site are potentially suited for urban purposes, and which areas are to be set aside for biodiversity conservation and other purposes.

·    If the project appears feasible, it will be necessary for the proponent to fully address the Sustainability Criteria for new release areas as contained within the Metropolitan Strategy.

·    The matter would then be submitted to the CEO’s of the Land Supply Group and then, contingent upon approval by Cabinet, included in the Metropolitan Development Program (MDP).  The purpose of this part of the process is to allow the Land Supply Group to recommend a regional infrastructure contribution to be paid to the State Government.

·    If included onto the MDP, the rezoning could then proceed with Council or could be dealt with by the State Government as a Part 3A matter.

 

The proponent has followed the process determined by the DoP, in terms of liaison with the DECC and the subsequent preparation of a Sustainability Assessment report.  The matter is proposed to be considered by the Land Supply CEO Group meeting of November 2007.

 

Commentary

 

While it is acknowledged that this matter is proceeding in accordance with the process set out by the Department of Planning, Council has had limited opportunity to provide meaningful input since the meeting held on 29 March 2007.

 

Council’s continued assessment of the formal rezoning application had been essentially deferred while the proponent participated in the DECC BioBanking Pilot Scheme.  Informally, Council was aware that the BioBanking trial had, in the opinion of the proponent, not produced sound outcomes and that, as a consequence, they intended to instead address management of the biodiversity values of the site through conventional conservation planning tools and principles.  Similarly, informal advice from the DoP indicated that the proponent would be proceeding to prepare a Sustainability Assessment, in consultation with Council, with the intention that the matter would be scheduled for consideration by the Land Supply CEO Group meeting of November 2007.

 

The Sustainability Assessment report was subsequently lodged with Council on 12 October 2007, without any consultation or discussion.  It is significant to note that the proposal now outlined in the Sustainability Assessment report is a significant evolution of the original scheme.  The scale and intensity of residential development has greatly increased.

 

The Sustainability Assessment report now suggests a scheme of up to 740 dwellings, grouped into three precincts with lot sizes of 350m2, 350m2-600m2 and 2000m2+.  The formal rezoning application in September 2006 had proposed a rural-residential subdivision of up to 180 dwellings on lot sizes averaging 4000m2, but generally ranging from 1500m2 to 8000m2.

 

In the limited time available, Council’s preliminary review has revealed numerous ‘gaps’ in the Sustainability Assessment report.  Of particular concern was the proponents stated desire to have this matter declared as ’state significant’ and dealt with under Part 3A of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act – meaning that the Minister for Planning would become the consent authority, thereby reducing Council’s role in the rezoning process.

 

Proposed Response

 

In view of the recent changes in this proposal, a letter has been issued to the Department requesting that it does not present this proposal to any meeting of the Land Supply Group until such time as:

·    Council staff complete a detailed review of the Sustainability Assessment report

·    All relevant stakeholders are afforded time to fully consider the Sustainability Assessment report

·    The matter is presented to Councillors.

 

In response to the revised proposal, it would be recommended that:

·    the residential densities now proposed for the site are inappropriate, and should be reviewed in the context of the role of this land as a ‘transition’ to the City’s rural areas and the nature of surrounding development

·    the conservation values of the site are no longer only tied to the extent of urban development, as more recent initiatives such as the Growth Sector Biodiversity funding have provided alternatives

·    Council vigorously oppose any consideration of listing the site on the MDP, until all identified issues have been resolved

·    Council oppose any declaration of the site’s rezoning as a Part 3A matter.

 

2.       The Northern Road, Glenmore Park

 

A submission has been made on behalf of an owner of land on the Northern Road, Glenmore Park, to the Metropolitan Land Supply CEO’s Group for inclusion of land indicated on the attached map for additional urban development.  It is noted from the submission that other affected landowners had not, at the time of writing the submission, been consulted about the development options.  The DoP has sought Council’s views on the proposal.

 

The Site

 

The subject land is generally bounded by Bradley Street to the south, The Northern Road to the east, Glenmore Parkway to the north and the residential area of Glenmore Park to the west.  The land is currently zoned 2(r) in Penrith LEP 1998 (Urban Land).  The zone permits development of a rural-residential nature, with a minimum subdivision area of 1 hectare.  A map of the site is appended to this report.

 

Background

 

The site is adjacent the eastern edge of the Glenmore Park estate which was planned in the mid 1980’s.  Prior to the release of Glenmore Park for urban purposes, considerable discussion occurred between Council and the State Government on a number of key issues relating to the manner in which future development in this area should emerge, including the boundaries of the intended release area.  Council was particularly concerned about the eastern extent of the estate and argued that the areas adjacent to The Northern Road should retain their rural character and zoning.  Council accordingly sought for this precinct to be excluded from the proposed release area for the following reasons:

·    Promoting rural / residential development would preserve the attractive rural approach along The Northern Road as an important entry to Penrith

·    Conserving the open, semi-rural environment would provide a high visual amenity to the locality and a valuable buffer to the denser residential forms to be developed to the west

·    Traffic noise from The Northern Road is a critical consideration and providing for lower density rural / residential development along this edge would optimise opportunities to site lot boundaries and dwellings in a manner which would assist in the mitigation of traffic noise

·    Rural / residential development had the potential to reduce the extent of sewerage infrastructure and drainage works which otherwise might be needed.

 

Despite Council’s representations, in 1986 the Minister for Planning and Environment announced the release of the Glenmore Park estate, including The Northern Road precinct, for residential development as part of the Sydney Region Urban Development Program.  Discussions with the Department of Planning at the time resulted in the view that a flexible Local Environmental Plan (LEP) containing a single broad-based urban zone, supported by more detailed Development Control Plans (DCPs), represented the most efficient approach to planning for Glenmore Park.  Under this draft LEP, traditional sub zones (eg, rural, residential, commercial, open space) were not included.

 

The Department of Planning was of the view that Council’s objectives in retaining a rural/residential subdivision pattern along the major road frontages of the estate could be satisfactorily accommodated in the DCPs, where a further level of detail and guidance for future development could be outlined.  The urban structure and management principles for the estate were subsequently contained in subsidiary plans which accompanied the LEP.

 

In 1989, the LEP for the Glenmore Park estate was formally made, and the subject land was zoned 2 (Urban).  In the early 1990s, Council received a number of development applications in Glenmore Park on land fronting The Northern Road edge of the estate.  These included a number of McDonald’s restaurant proposals on land adjacent the Garswood Road intersection with The Northern Road, and a residential subdivision comprising 258 lots on the subject land.  These proposals, despite being permissible under the broad planning instrument were clearly inconsistent with Council’s long-held planning objectives for The Northern Road precinct and accordingly, Council refused to grant consent to the developments.  Council’s decisions were appealed to the Land and Environment Court and ultimately upheld by that body.

 

In arriving at its decisions, the Court recognised the continuation of the open, semi-rural character could only be achieved by essentially maintaining the status quo in the development pattern and that higher density development patterns would not only contrast with that objective but essentially contribute to its loss.

 

As a consequence of these proposals, Council pursued amendments to the planning framework for Glenmore Park which included the preparation of a Major Land Use DCP, an Eastern Hamlets DCP which specifically covers the subject site, and an amendment to LEP No 188, the Glenmore Park estate LEP of the day.  These amendments focused on a clear identification of the need to conserve The Northern Road precinct with an open, semi-rural character and as a major gateway into the urban areas of Penrith.  These plan amendments similarly reinforced the need to maintain a low density settlement pattern in order to achieve these objectives.  The LEP amendment was gazetted in 1994 and mirrored similar zoning provisions contained in the Orchard Hills REP for the land opposite on the eastern side of The Northern Road.  More recently, these zoning provisions were absorbed into the City-wide Urban Lands LEP 1998.

 

Council considered a report at its meeting of the 1st December, 2003 which raised concern that the planning controls in this locality may not in all circumstances deliver Council’s long-held objective of promoting the open, semi-rural character of the area as a major gateway into Penrith.  Council resolved to prepare a further Local Environmental Plan amendment for the zone 2(r) Rural/Residential area along The Northern Road, Glenmore Park which clarifies the original intentions for development of this area and promoted a 1 hectare minimum lot size for subdivision.  The draft LEP was gazetted in March 2006, and reinforced the Department of Planning’s support for Council’s intentions for the site.

 

Proposed Subdivision being sought over land on The Northern Road

 

The 2 development options presented to Government for consideration are –

·    Option 1 (preferred by landowner): Configuration that allows for a landscaped setback along The Northern Road with allotments of around 4,000 m2 and standard residential behind, up to the ridgeline.  This would yield approximately 300 lots.

·    Option 2: Configuration based on the 2006 Land and Environment Court approval.  This approval allowed for 20 lots between a new access street and the Northern Road.  Access is from a new street from Bradley Street.  The subdivision roads then link into Saddlers Way in the Glenmore Park development.  Residential development extends from the access road up to the ridgeline This would yield approximately 250 lots.

 

In support of these additional development options, the landowners’ submission seeks to justify further development by arguing for the need for further housing in Penrith, the availability of infrastructure which would emerge to service Glenmore Park Stage 2, and the adjacency of the existing Glenmore Park estate.

 

Councillors will also recall the subdivision application referred to above for 20 ‘rural-residential’ lots along The Northern Road, which was refused by Council on 13 December 2004 and subsequently approved in the LEC in 2006.  This subdivision has not proceeded.

 

Relationship to the Local Plan process

 

In 2003, Council adopted a Rural Lands Strategy for the City which identified land important to retain for its agricultural viability, cultural or landscape value and also identified land which should be set aside as rural living.

 

At its meeting of 15 October 2007, Council endorsed the public exhibition of Stage 1 of the draft Penrith Local Environmental Plan 2008 (Local Plan) which applies to the rural lands across the City.  Council’s adopted Rural Lands Strategy provides a clear policy direction for drafting the new provisions relating to rural lands across the City.  Stage One of the Local Plan identified the proponents land as an E4 Environmental Living zone with minimum lot size of 1 hectare.  The identification of the land for this particular zoning reinforces Council’s longstanding position regarding the land as described above.

 

Position of the Department of Planning

 

The Department advised Council by letter dated 17 October 2007 that it had received a submission, on behalf of Nergl Developments, to consider including land fronting The Northern Road on the Metropolitan Development Program.  The DoP is canvassing Council’s views on the proposal, given that Council has considered similar proposals on this land in the past.  DoP sought comments by 1 November 2007 as they intend to report the proposal to the November meeting of the Land Supply CEO’s Group.  Council’s request, that the matter not be taken to the November meeting to allow time for further assessment, was denied by the DoP.

 

Commentary

 

We have not had sufficient time to formally assess the proposal in detail however, it is important to note that Council, since the original planning for the Glenmore Park Release Area in the mid 1980s, has been particularly concerned about the extent and impact of urban development in areas adjacent to The Northern Road and has consistently argued they should retain their existing rural character and related zoning.  The reasons for this view are essentially:

·    Promoting rural/residential development in this locality would preserve the attractive rural approach along The Northern Road as an important entry to Penrith, and  preserve view lines to the Blue Mountains escarpment to the west.

·    Conserving the open, semi-rural environment would provide a high visual amenity to the locality and a valuable buffer to the denser residential forms to be developed to the west of the ridgeline and out of view from The Northern Road.

·    Traffic noise from the Northern Road could be more readily mitigated in a larger lot pattern development, without resorting to highly prominent noise walls and other devices.

·    Rural/residential development has the potential to reduce the extent of sewerage and drainage infrastructure works.

 

Council has applied these fundamental planning goals for the area consistently for many years and has refused development proposals along The Northern Road which have sought to introduce urban development which is at odds with those principles.  This position remains extremely valid.

 

The Land and Environment Court has supported Council’s position in previous appeals.  The Glenmore Park LEP has been amended in order to reinforce the planning outcomes sought for this locality and mirror similar zoning provisions contained in the Orchard Hills REP for the land opposite on the eastern side of The Northern Road.

 

Council completed a Residential Strategy for the LGA in 1997, which was favourably received by the DoP. This Strategy confirmed that our expected population growth for the following 20 years (some 45,000 people) can be accommodated within existing and currently planned release areas without resorting to new residential areas located in our existing rural areas.  The Residential Strategy did not require or rely upon a residential development outcome on the subject land.

 

Council in 2003 adopted a Rural Lands Strategy for the City which identified land important to retain for its agricultural viability, cultural or landscape value and also identified land which should be set aside as rural living.  This Strategy reaffirmed the appropriateness of the land along The Northern Road being retained for rural/residential purposes given its strategic gateway location and predominant open, semi-rural character.  The Strategy was endorsed by the Department of Planning as an appropriate planning basis for future planning policy.  More recently Council has endorsed the public exhibition of Stage 1 of the draft Penrith LEP 2008 which proposes an ‘E4 Environmental Living’ zone, with a minimum lot size of 1 hectare for the western edge of The Northern Road in this locality.  In so doing, Council has continued to recognise the inappropriateness of an urban residential outcome for this area.

 

The DoP has advised that in relation to the development of the North-west Subregional Strategy, Penrith LGA will need to provide 25,000 new dwellings by 2031.  This includes the current estimated 13,500 dwellings which are being planned for delivery in the City’s release areas.  The work which has recently had carried out by the id group looking at housing supply opportunities throughout the City, has identified a series of locations where new housing which will meet DoP’s target can be practically and efficiently provided. As identified by DoP, that review has focussed on the established urban areas of the City and in particular, the precincts in and around centres. The Northern Road land was not identified as one of these locations and has not been incorporated in the estimated dwelling forecasts required to meet the DoP target.

 

The DoP has reinforced its position that the majority of new housing required to satisfy the Sub-region target is to be located in or adjacent to local and major centres.  We have put to DoP that some flexibility should be afforded in the spatial distribution of new housing, given the Penrith circumstance the range of existing new release areas across the City listed on the Government’s Metropolitan Development Program required to be planned and delivered.  This would see a stronger balance between housing to be provided in new release areas and housing which will emerge in and around centres than otherwise might be sought by government.  We have not had confirmation from DoP as yet on this approach and it is expected that will emerge in consideration of the North-west Subregional strategy responses when exhibited.  It is, however, important to note that the subject land on the Northern Road is not a centre and therefore would not meet the DoP’s criteria enunciated in the Metropolitan Strategy in this regard.

 

Proposed Response

 

Given the particularly short, and inadequate, timeframes provided to consider this proposal, the only position Council can reasonably take is to again endorse its long held policy position of opposing residential development in this locality. This is supported by the position that an urban housing  outcome for The Northern Road land is not required to meet the requirements of Council’s adopted  Residential Strategy or the expected housing target for Penrith likely to be set by the DoP in the North West Sub-region Strategy.

Council should request, however, that the matter not be referred to the November Land Supply CEO’s Group meeting so as to provide for some dialogue between Council and the DoP and allow proper consideration of the proposal.

Department of Planning processes

The State Government’s Metropolitan Strategy has identified the principal greenfield release areas required in Western Sydney to accommodate future housing needs out to 2031 for the expected population growth.  That has included the identification of significant residential development opportunities in both the North West and South West Growth Centres.  The capacity for both Penrith and other LGAs in Western Sydney to deliver additional housing from both existing planned release areas and the redevelopment of existing established areas and centres has also been factored into the Metropolitan Strategy. 

 

The DoP has advised that Penrith LGA will need to accommodate in the order of 25,000 new homes up to 2031 as our share of the metropolitan growth targets.  That is to be comprised of existing planned release areas and future housing opportunities, which our initial analysis suggests can be accommodated without resorting to the conversion of rural zones in the City for urban residential purposes.  This will be further detailed in our review of the Residential Strategy for the City next year. 

 

The Department of Planning has set in place a clear process for preparing a new Citywide LEP for Penrith, which properly entails a considered and strategic approach to the long term planning for the City.  It will also need to reflect the principles and requirements to be installed in the North West Sub-region Strategy which we are currently awaiting public exhibition.   The Department has advised Council that the new Penrith Local Environmental Plan (and accompanying Penrith Development Control Plan) must be completed within a two year timeframe (by March 2009).

 

Council has appropriately approached this massive task by ensuring first that adopted strategies are in place to guide the preparation of new zones and planning controls.  Given the collaborative processes currently being engaged by Council and the State Government to develop a clear local planning framework which meets DoP requirements, the invitation to individual land owners for pursuing residential development opportunities outside of the local planning process, circumvents the ability for Council to plan for its local area in a coordinated, efficient and strategic manner. 

 

It is of great concern that the DoP and the Land Supply CEOs group continue to entertain site specific proposals outside of that process compromises Council’s effectiveness and transparency in the development of a sensible planning strategy for the City. 

 

It is also of concern that the Department has taken this approach with these sites, as it appears to diminish the role Council has in ensuring that development in the City is appropriate for its character and community.  Responding to these separate proposals also requires the diversion of staff who would otherwise be progressing the Penrith Local Environmental Plan and Penrith Development Control Plan.  There is a complete lack of commitment by DoP to involve Council, or the community, ahead of consideration of such matters for listing on the MDP.

Conclusion

The recent analysis undertaken by the id group confirms that the DoP’s proposed North West Sub-regional housing target for Penrith LGA can be met within the framework established by Council’s adopted Residential and Rural Strategies and by targeting appropriate infill development opportunities within the established residential areas and centres throughout the City.  This will be a key focus in the proposed Residential Strategy Review to be undertaken next year.

 

Our initial assessment of the proposals is that they are highly inappropriate to their location, context and local character.

 

Given the issues outlined in the report, we have requested the Department not to present these proposals to any meeting of the MDP Land Supply CEO’s Group until such time as Council staff completes a detailed review of the Sustainability Assessment reports, and all relevant stakeholders are afforded time to fully consider the implications of these proposals. Notwithstanding that request, DoP has remained insistent on the proposals being presented to the CEOs group later this month.  That is extremely disappointing.

 

To date, the landowner of the Cranebrook site has been working in consultation with Council to determine the biodiversity values and development potential of the land.  The process outlined by DoP, whilst it nominally includes consideration of Council feedback, is primarily focussed on a State Government determined outcome for this site, with limited reference to local issues or context, or the values of Penrith City’s community.  Accordingly, it is recommended that Council firmly advise DoP that it considers the proposed residential development of the ASA land is inappropriate and that the site should be viewed in the context of its role as a transition to the northern rural areas and reflect the nature of surrounding development.

 

In relation to The Northern Road, Glenmore Park proposal, the proponent has not seen fit to advise us of the advancement of the proposed residential development.  It is also not clear that all of the land owners affected by the proposal have either been advised of the request to the Government or are supportive of it.  Council has maintained a long held planning intention to maintain the character and quality of the viewscapes along this important gateway to the urban areas of the City.  That has seen a vigorous pursuit embedded in the statutory planning controls for the area which has aimed to preserve the open, semi-rural character of the area and the vistas both to the Orchard Hills rural landscape and to the Blue Mountains escarpment.  Council should continue to strongly uphold this extremely valid planning objective.

 

It is of great concern that the Department has developed a process which enables land owners and development proponents to bring forward proposals which are prohibited under local zoning arrangements, seeking rezonings for urban purposes completely outside of the Local Plan process established by the State Government.  This process diminishes the role Council has in ensuring that development in the City is appropriate for its context, local character and community.  It is also of significant concern that the Department of Planning has set in place a clear process for preparing a new Citywide LEP for Penrith, which properly entails a considered and strategic approach to the long term planning for the City, while entertaining site specific proposals outside of that process, thus compromising its effectiveness and transparency. 

 

For these reasons it is recommended that Council make strong representations to the Department of Planning to not only request that the two subject proposals not be further considered by the Land Supply CEOs group, or listed on the State’s Metropolitan Development Program, but also express concern over the implications that this process which stands aside from the Local Planning arrangements which the State Government has obligated Local Councils to pursue.

 

 

RECOMMENDATION

That:

1.     The information contained in the report on Rezoning Proposals for Vincent Road, Cranebrook and The Northern Road, Glenmore Park be received

2.     For the reasons outlined in this report, Council request the Department of Planning not to proceed with the submission of the rezoning proposals for consideration by the Metropolitan Development Program Land Supply CEOs group

3.     Council formally oppose the listing of the sites on the Metropolitan Development Program or their consideration as a Major Project under Part 3A of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act

4.     Council request further dialogue with the Department of Planning in relation to the process for securing rezonings outside of the existing Local Planning framework and statutory arrangements

 

ATTACHMENTS/APPENDICES

1. View

Vincent Road, Cranebrook site

1 Page

Appendix

2. View

The Northern Road, Glenmore Park site

1 Page

Appendix

  


Policy Review Committee Meeting

19 November 2007

Appendix 1 - Vincent Road, Cranebrook site

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Policy Review Committee Meeting

19 November 2007

Appendix 2 - The Northern Road, Glenmore Park site

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  


The City as a Social Place

 

Item                                                                                                                                       Page

 

5        Penrith Whitewater Stadium - Annual Report and Board of Directors

 

6        City of Penrith Regional Indoor Aquatic and Recreation Centre Ltd - Annual Report and Board of Directors

 

7        Caddens draft Local Environmental Plan - Boundary Amendment

 

8        Werrington Enterprise Living and Learning (WELL) Precinct - Draft Section 94 Development Contributions Plan

 

9        Werrington Enterprise Living and Learning (WELL) Precinct - Community Consultation

 

10      Erskine Business Park - Amendment to  Section 94 Development Contributions Plan 

 

11      Smoke Free Outdoor Policy and Cancer Incidence Mapping

 

 



Policy Review Committee Meeting

19 November 2007

The City as a Social Place

 

 

The City as a Social Place

 

 

5

Penrith Whitewater Stadium - Annual Report and Board of Directors   

 

Compiled by:                Glenn Schuil, Senior Governance Officer

Authorised by:             Stephen Britten, Legal and Governance Manager   

Strategic Program Term Achievement: The City’s recreation and leisure facilities and services meet its needs and are optimally used.

Critical Action: Ensure facilities and services reflect the City's diverse current and future recreation and leisure needs.

 

Presenters:                   Ross Fowler, Chairman - Penrith Whitewater Stadium Limited - Chairman's Annual Report

                                      Jack Hodge, Stadium Manager - Penrith Whitewater Stadium Limited - Stadium Manager's Report    

Purpose:

To provide Council with details following the ninth Annual General Meeting of the Penrith Whitewter Stadium Ltd.  The Chairman and the Stadium Manager will make a short presentation.  The report recommends that the information be received, that certain appointments be made to fill the vacancies, and the Council agree to underwrite the company for a further period of 12 months.

 

Background

Each year, following the Annual General Meeting of the Company, a report is presented to the Council on the year’s activities, including the financial position.  That Council report also includes the Chairman and Stadium Manager’s reports, which are extracted from the Company’s Annual Report.

Annual Report

The Ninth Annual General Meeting of the Company was held on 18 October 2007, for the period ended 30 June 2007.

 

The Chairman of the Board and Stadium Manager will be in attendance tonight to make a short presentation which will focus on:

 

·    The Past Year

-     Highlights

-     Financial position

-     Issues arising

·    The Year Ahead

 

Following are their reports extracted from the Annual Report.

 

Chairman’s Report

It gives me much pleasure to present the Chairman’s Report to the Ninth Annual General Meeting of Penrith Whitewater Stadium Limited.

The operations for the year have produced a financial result that is pleasing. Patronage for whitewater rafting and canoeing based activities remains strong. Revenue for the year was $2,436,755, which is marginally less than $2,559,616 for 2006. The financial outcome for the year ended 30 June 2007 resulted in a surplus before depreciation, amortisation and interest of $227,656 a decrease of 10% when compared to the surplus achieved in 2006 of $254,151.  During the year some $146,391 was spent on capital improvements. 

 

The Stadium continues to contribute to the overall Penrith economy and to the advancement of the sport of canoe slalom both locally and internationally.

 

Penrith Whitewater Stadium continues to generate a great deal of publicity both nationally and internationally, adding to its reputation as one of the world’s premier sporting facilities. Again the venue has successfully hosted both international and local competitions and has continued to attract a significant number of athletes who see the stadium as their preferred off-season training venue.

 

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Centre Manager, Jack Hodge and his management team (Simonetta, Jeff and Vicki) for leading the organization. Throughout the year the Penrith Whitewater Staff have shown great dedication to the business. The   underlying enthusiasm and commitment of staff is fundamental to the Venue’s continuing success.

 

I would also like to thank my fellow Directors for their continuing commitment and input to the operations of Penrith Whitewater Stadium.  I particularly thank Conrad Ozog, who retired from the Board of Directors during the year, for his contributions to the success of the Centre.

 

Finally I would like to take the opportunity to congratulate the coach and members of the Australian Canoe Slalom Team on their successes throughout the year and wish them all the best as they prepare for the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Stadium Manager’s Report

Participation in the activities offered by PWS remained steady.  Kayak Instruction and Swiftwater Rescue Training were notable exceptions with an increase of 39% and 1,780% respectively. 

 

Whitewater rafting remains the most popular activity and the highest revenue earner for PWS.  Rafting participation increased by 2% from 26,841 to 27,311 and total revenue for rafting increased by only 0.2% from $1,763,306 to $1,766,923 due to a decrease in gift certificate sales from $322,901 to $239,029. 

 

The Café had an unsettled year and total revenue decreased by 6% from to $322,735 to $303,534.

 

Total revenue decreased by 5% from $2,581,337 in 2005-06 to $2,458,147 in 2006-07 but still exceeded the target established in the 2003-2008 Business Plan of $2,310,469 by 6%.  Total expenses decreased by 3.8% from $2,686,081 to $2,546,689 resulting in an increase in operating profit from -$ 8,052 to $4,594 and an increase in net profit of 17% from -$102,651 to -$85,242. 

 

PWS maintained its strong support for the sport of canoe slalom throughout the year.  The venue hosted the First Australian Open in February as part of the newly created Slalom World Series.  The venue also hosted the Australian Team Selection Series, NSW State Slalom Championships, NSW Southern Zone Slalom Championships, PWS Winter Slalom Series and the PWS ‘Concrete Classic’ freestyle event.  PWS facilitated over 580 hours of slalom training and races for Australian and International paddlers.  This included 271 hours for the Australian team as part of the Canoe Slalom National Centre of Excellence (NCE) Agreement between PWS, the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS), the New South Wales Institute of Sport (NSWIS) and Australian Canoeing.  The value of PWS’s contribution to the agreement was approximately $78,056.  PWS also sponsored access to training for the Western Sydney Academy of Sport (WSAS) Slalom Program to the value of approximately $28,400.

 

PWS continued its support of various charitable and community organisations.  This included the donation of 318 Gift certificates to the value of $22,896 and the provision of swiftwater awareness training for river restoration volunteers to the value of $5,850.

 

Thanks to all PWS staff for their assistance during the year.  Thanks also to the PWS Board of Directors for their ongoing dedication and support. The successful operation of PWS relies upon the support of the general public and a network of companies and organisations.  PWS would like to thank the general public, suppliers, venue stake holders and neighbouring organisations for their support and looks forward to working together more closely in the future to maximise the ongoing success of PWS and Penrith Lakes.

Board of Directors

The Articles of Association of the above Company provide, in part, that:

 

1.   To provide continuity the members of the Board shall resign on a rotating basis.  At the First Annual General Meeting, three (3) Directors (including one (1) Councillor) shall resign.  At the Second Annual General Meeting, three (3) members shall resign (including one (1) Councillor).  Thereafter, the members of the Board, except the Council Officer, shall resign after they have served on the Board for three (3) years after appointment or re-appointment to the Board.   

2.   All retiring Directors shall be eligible for re-appointment.

 

Council should note that, as per the Articles of Association, Councillors Pat Sheehy and Garry Rumble resigned at the Ninth Annual General Meeting of Penrith Whitewater Stadium Ltd held on 18 October 2007.  Councillors Pat Sheehy and Garry Rumble nominated for re-appointment.   It was resolved at the Ninth Annual General Meeting of Penrith Whitewater Stadium Limited that Penrith City Council be requested to endorse the appointment of Councillors Pat Sheehy and Garry Rumble as Directors of Penrith Whitewater Stadium Ltd.

 

Council’s Director of City Strategy, Mr Alan Stoneham remains on the Board as Council’s General Manager’s representative and Company Secretary.

 

Councillor Ross Fowler was re-appointed Chairman and Helen Brownlee, Deputy Chairman.

Financial Accountant – Entities’ Comment

Penrith Whitewater Stadium Limited posted a deficit for the 2006-07 financial year of $85,242 compared to a deficit of $102,651 in 2005-2006. These deficits followed two consecutive years of surpluses $48,738 (2004-05) and $1,152 (2003-04). This deficit was after providing for depreciation costs of $201,670 and borrowing costs of $111,228. The result before depreciation, amortisation and interest was therefore a surplus of $227,656 down 10% from $254,151 in 2005-2006.

 

The current economic climate has continued to place considerable strain on the availability of ‘discretionary spending’ for the leisure market, the market for which the Company is competing. Whitewater rafting which remains the most popular activity and the largest revenue generator for the Company increased its participation rate by 2%, this however only generated additional revenue of 0.2% due to a significant decrease in the sale of gift certificates. Careful management of expenses and initiatives to increase revenue will continue to see positive net operating results for the stadium.

 

 

RECOMMENDATION

That:

1.     The information contained in the report on Penrith Whitewater Stadium - Annual Report and Board of Directors be received

2.     Councillors Pat Sheehy and Garry Rumble be appointed to fill the vacancies that occurred at the Ninth Annual General Meeting of the Penrith Whitewater Stadium Ltd

3.     Council agree to underwrite the operation of the Penrith Whitewater Stadium Ltd until the presentation to Council of the Penrith Whitewater Stadium Ltd Annual Report for 2007-08

4.     Council congratulate the Board of the Penrith Whitewater Stadium Ltd on their success and achievements over the 12 months to the end of June 2007.

 

ATTACHMENTS/APPENDICES

There are no attachments for this report.


Policy Review Committee Meeting

19 November 2007

The City as a Social Place

 

 

The City as a Social Place

 

 

6

City of Penrith Regional Indoor Aquatic and Recreation Centre Ltd - Annual Report and Board of Directors   

 

Compiled by:                Glenn Schuil, Senior Governance Officer

Authorised by:             Stephen Britten, Legal and Governance Manager   

Strategic Program Term Achievement: The City’s recreation and leisure facilities and services meet its needs and are optimally used.

Critical Action: Ensure facilities and services reflect the City's diverse current and future recreation and leisure needs.

 

Presenters:                   His Worship the Mayor, Councillor Greg Davies - Chairman - City of Penrith Regional Indoor Aquatic and Recreation Centre Limited

                                      Louise Dawson - Acting General Manager - City of Penrith Regional Indoor Aquatic and Recreation Centre    

Purpose:

To provide Council with details following the thirteenth Annual General Meeting of the City of Penrith Regional Indoor and Aquatic Recreation Centre Ltd.  The Chairman of the Board and the Acting General Manager will make a short presentation.  The report recommends that the information be received, that certain appointments be made to fill the vacancies, and the Council agree to underwrite the Company for a further period of 12 months.

 

Annual Report

This report to Council follows the Thirteenth Annual General Meeting of the Company held on 16 October 2007, for the trading period 1 July 2006 to 30 June 2007.

 

The Chairman of the Board and the Acting General Manager will be in attendance tonight to make a short presentation which will focus on:

·    The Past Year

-     Highlights

-     Financial position

-     Issues arising

·    The Year Ahead

 

Following are their reports extracted from the Annual Report.

CHAIRMAN’S REPORT

I am pleased to present the Chairman’s Report to the 13th Annual General Meeting of the City of Penrith Regional Indoor Aquatic and Recreation Centre Limited.

 

In doing so may I thank the Management and Staff of Ripples and the Board of Directors for the efforts to see the centre remain a key outlet for:

1.   recreation activities,

2.   a facility that assists local residents to keep fit,

3.   gives opportunities for local children to learn to swim, encourages and provides competition to enhance the abilities of  those who wish to go further in the sport.

 

This year has not been that much different to the previous 4-5 years in that again we face the problem of decreased attendances in swim activities, resulting in lower revenues. The fitness area of operations however is encouraging.

 

The Company recorded an operating profit of $242,108 after providing for employee benefits of $2,087,735 and after expenditure of $129,598 on repairs and maintenance. Capital expenditure for the year was $34,512, this expenditure being focused on plant repairs and necessary items.  Penrith City Council continues to be kept fully informed with regards to the financial position of the Centre and have agreed to continue to underwrite the Centre’s operations.

 

The Hydrotherapy Centre is showing positive signs for the future. A new marketing focus directed at health professionals and the health industry in general is helping that trend. This focus must be maintained to ensure this continues.

 

The Centre is now entering its 14th year of operation, and we are now finding that major capital works will be required. Whilst the Board of Ripples will be involved in any decisions regarding future works, it remains the responsibility of Council to determine works and funding for the majority of the work that is required. The ongoing maintenance of the Centre is being addressed. The maintenance responsibility is set out in the Occupancy Agreement with Penrith City Council. 

 

2007/08 will throw up more challenges for all involved with Ripples. This is especially the case considering the information to hand on the state of the building.

 

Once again can I thank Geoff and all of his staff for their efforts over the past year and I have no doubt that this will continue into the future.

 

Again to all Board members, many thanks for a job well done and I look forward to working with all members over the next twelve months.

Centre General Manager’s Report

I am pleased to present the General Manager’s Report for the year ended 30th June 2007. As with all Company’s we are faced with daily challenges that impact our operations, both positively and negatively. This year has seen new operators enter the local area which will challenge the way the Centre performs in the future. We are ready to accept that challenge.

 

Patronage of 497,071 visits was just short of our target attendance of 500,000 visits. There was a pleasing rise in Learn to Swim participation levels during the year which reflects the success of our continued delivery of quality swimming and water safety instruction to patrons.

 

Financial Overview

The Company posted a profit of $242,108 after accounting for depreciation provisions of $55,621 and Repairs and Maintenance costs of $129,598. Repairs & Maintenance costs have risen by 8% on last years figure and reflects the investment needed to maintain ageing infrastructure.

 

Operating Revenue was $3,569,812 which was an increase of 15% on last year’s revenue result. Membership Subscriptions were $643,040 (down $79,843 on 05/06) with 1,225 active members as at 30th June 2007.

 

Income from Hydrotherapy operations was $226,164, an increase of 13.6% on last year.

 

A conscientious effort by all staff to keep costs under control saw savings occur in all

operational areas and I commend the staff for their undertakings.

 

Full financial details are contained in the accompanying accounts and notes to the Financial Statements.

Personnel

This year saw 41 staff leaving and 42 staff joining the organisation. The highest turnover

occurred in the Learn to Swim department with casual instructors. We have been fortunate in being able to attract higher calibre staff which is reflected in the standard of performance currently being experienced in all areas. 

 

The training of our staff to a higher level of competency than the industry standard has been a focus this year and we currently have 13 staff completing Certificate IV in Sport & Recreation. These staff have selected specialist modules in Pool Operations, Event Management, Administration and Marketing. Upon completion they will be a valuable asset to the Company.

 

Attracting skilled staff represents a major challenge for the industry. There is a major shortage of swimming instructors and lifeguards to a lesser extent at this present time. Ripples is looking at joining with local high schools to offer VET programs where students obtain relevant qualifications and training and Ripples gets qualified staff.

Achievements

Ripples this year commenced a number of new programmes to meet a demand from the community. They are:

·        Type II Diabetes Lifestyle Program

·        Water familiarisation classes for new parents in our Hydrotherapy Centre

·        Swimming Lessons for those with Special Needs eg autism, physical disabilities

·        Alliances with Local area GP’s to deliver Lifestyle Choices programs under Medicare

The Future

In line with community and government expectations to conserve water, Ripples is currently planning the installation of a water recycling plant to recover and reuse filter backwash water. This is expected to be operational in early 2008.

·        Community based programmes will be expanded to meet demand, including diabetes program, special needs swimming and water safety classes.

·        Planning for improvements at the Centre will continue to achieve outcomes in energy savings, brighter facilities and service delivery.

Acknowledgements

In conclusion, I would like to thank the Board of Directors for their support, guidance and encouragement during the year. I look forward to continuing this relationship in the year ahead.

 

I would also like to mention the support of Penrith City Council in assisting us in many ways throughout the year. This has been invaluable.

 

My personal thanks to my Management Team who have ably run their various departments and provided loyal support to me in the operations of the Company.

 

Finally, to the staff, our greatest asset!  I thank them for their hard work, diligence and positive attitude in what has been a tough year for all of us. With the continuing support of the Ripples Team we will meet future challenges and see that Ripples remains at the forefront in providing a great service for our community.

Board of Directors

The Articles of Association of the Company provide, in part, that:

 

1.   To provide continuity the members of the Board shall resign on a rotating basis.  At the First Annual General Meeting, three (3) Directors (including one (1) Councillor) shall resign.  At the Second Annual General Meeting, three (3) members shall resign (including one (1) Councillor).  Thereafter, the members of the Board, except the Council officer, shall resign after they have served on the Board for three (3) years after appointment or re-appointment to the Board.

 

2.   All retiring Directors shall be eligible for re-appointment.

 

Council should note that, as per the Articles of Association, His Worship the Mayor, Councillor Greg Davies, Mr John Cottee, Mr Rodney Watson and Mrs Lynette Crossley resigned at the Annual General Meeting of the Company, held 16 October 2007, and nominated for re-appointment.  It was resolved at the Thirteenth Annual General Meeting of the City of Penrith Regional Indoor Aquatic and Recreation Centre Ltd that Penrith City Council be requested to endorse the appointment of His Worship the Mayor, Councillor Greg Davies, Mr John Cottee, Mr Rodney Watson and Mrs Lynette Crossley as continuing Directors of the City of Penrith Regional Indoor Aquatic and Recreation Centre Ltd. 

 

Council’s Director of City Planning, Mr Craig Butler, remains on the Board as Council’s General Manager’s representative and Company Secretary.

 

His Worship the Mayor, Councillor Greg Davies and Mr John Cottee were elected Chairman and Deputy Chairman respectively.

 

Financial Accountant Entities – comment

The 2006-07 result for the City of Penrith Regional Indoor Aquatic and Recreation Centre Ltd reports an operating surplus of $242,108 which includes a Council subsidy of $825,070. Without this subsidy the result would have been a deficit of $582,962 which would have continued the recent trend of operating deficits for the Company. This compares to the reported deficit for 2005-06 of $1,051,805 included the impact of returning the Hydrotherapy Centre to Council, a deficit of $938,780, providing a trading deficit of $113,025 for the year which also included a Council subsidy of $290,000 the trading deficit for the Company would have been $403,025 which followed a deficit of $316,769 sustained in the 2004-05 financial year.

 

The current economic climate has continued to place considerable strain on the availability of ‘discretionary spending’ for the leisure market, the market for which the Company is competing. The losses of recent years can mainly be attributed to decreasing patronage levels particularly in the ‘wet’ areas of the Centre, although the General Manager in his report does note that there was a “pleasing rise” in Learn to Swim participation levels. Attendances will be further threatened by new operators entering the local market. The Chairman’s Report also notes that the Centre is now ageing and facing “major capital works”.

 

Council has included in its 2007-2008 Budget a subsidy of $310,000 for the Company. Early indications for the 2007-2008 financial year are that this subsidy may be insufficient to enable the Company to avoid another deficit.

 

 

RECOMMENDATION

That:

1.     The information contained in the report on City of Penrith Regional Indoor Aquatic and Recreation Centre Ltd - Annual Report and Board of Directors be received

2.     His Worship the Mayor, Councillor Greg Davies, Mr John Cottee, Mr Rodney Watson and Mrs Lynette Crossley be appointed to fill the vacancy that occurred at the Thirteenth Annual General Meeting of the City of Penrith Regional Indoor Aquatic and Recreation Centre Ltd

3.     Council agree to underwrite the operations of the City of Penrith Regional Indoor Aquatic and Recreation Centre Ltd until the presentation to Council of the City of Penrith Regional Indoor Aquatic and Recreation Centre Ltd Annual Report for 2007/08

4.     Council congratulate the Board of the City of Penrith Regional Indoor Aquatic and Recreation Centre on their success and achievements over the 12 months to end of June 2007.

 

ATTACHMENTS/APPENDICES

There are no attachments for this report.


Policy Review Committee Meeting

19 November 2007

The City as a Social Place

 

 

The City as a Social Place

 

 

7

Caddens draft Local Environmental Plan - Boundary Amendment   

 

Compiled by:                Anthony Milanoli, Senior Environmental Planner

Authorised by:             Roger Nethercote, Environmental Planning Manager   

Strategic Program Term Achievement: New release areas provide for a diversity of housing opportunities, including affordable housing, consistent with emerging community needs and which facilitates the development of diverse neighbourhoods.

Critical Action: Prepare and implement plans for each new release area in collaboration with the development sector and key Government agencies that provide a wide diversity and mix of housing types that meet current and emerging community needs.

 

Presenters:                   Kerry Robinson, General Manager - Urban Development North, and Camille Abbott, Development Director - Landcom - Caddens Release Area future development intentions    

Purpose:

To present proposed amended Local Environmental Plan (LEP) boundaries for the Caddens Release Area.  The report recommends that Council adopt amended boundaries for the Caddens Release Area.  A presentation on the status of the planning for the Caddens Release Area and background to the suggested LEP boundary amendments will be provided by representatives of Landcom.

 

Background

On 1 November 2004 Council resolved to prepare a draft Local Environmental Plan (LEP) and Development Control Plan (DCP) for the Caddens Release Area. The draft LEP defined specific boundaries identifying the release area.  In accordance with Council’s resolution, a Section 54 submission was made to the Department of Infrastructure Planning and Natural Resources (now the Department of Planning) on 22 November 2004.

 

Since Council’s 2004 resolution issues associated with site suitability have arisen as a consequence of more detailed investigations and studies. Due to the findings contained in these studies it is considered prudent to review the boundaries of the draft LEP to ensure the most appropriate outcomes arise for existing and future residents and the environment. This report provides an overview of these issues.

 

The boundaries for the Caddens Release Area draft LEP adopted by Council on 1 November 2004 are shown on the map appended to this report and identified as Map “A”.

Caddens Release Area

The Caddens Release Area is located in the south west corner of the Werrington Enterprise Living and Learning (WELL) Precinct. The Release Area is generally bounded by the suburb of Kingswood to the west, Caddens Road to the south, Claremont Meadows to the east and the TAFE/University of Western Sydney to the north.

 

Caddens Release Area is characterised by largely undeveloped, cleared land with undulating topography and incorporates creeks, dams and ponds, sporadically located vegetation and several dwellings.

 

The Caddens Release Area was identified for urban purposes by the State Government in the 1980s. 

WELL Precinct Planning

As part of the overall strategic planning for the WELL Precinct, in August 2003 an Enquiry by Design process was undertaken.  This exercise involved engaging stakeholders to gather ideas and viewpoints, establish key issues and engage residents and stakeholders.  The process helped in determining final boundaries for the WELL Precinct and its sub-precincts, including Caddens Release Area.

 

Extensive planning has since been undertaken to progress development of the WELL Precinct generally and the Caddens Release Area more specifically. Following completion of the WELL Precinct Strategy in 2004 – which established the broad principles for development of the area as a whole – in October 2006 Council adopted a refined Concept Plan which more precisely nominated development scenarios for Caddens.  The Caddens-specific scenarios included mainly residential land use (comprising approximately 1,300 dwellings with a range of housing types),  a precinct centre (approximately 10,000 m2  in scale)  located at the corner of Second Avenue and O’Connell Street (comprising retail, commercial and residential uses) and a vegetated corridor running north-south along the principal creek line adjacent O’Connell Street. 

 

Since adoption and exhibition of the refined Concept Plan in October 2006, the proponent, Landcom, has undertaken numerous Caddens-specific studies (including those relating to ecology, employment, traffic and transport, population, etc).  The completion of these studies has led to revised development intentions for the precinct and as a consequence the need to amend the boundaries of the Caddens Release area.  The background to the amended boundaries is outlined below.

Proposed Boundary Amendments

In response to the design refinements considered necessary as a result of additional studies that have occurred since Council’s resolution of 1 November 2004 – and which were required by the DoP in order to advance the draft LEP - the following amendments to the Caddens draft LEP boundary are proposed:

 

·        Caddens Road intersection extension at Kingswood – This involves extending the area affected by the plan in the south west sector of the release area to incorporate a roughly triangular parcel north of Caddens Road and adjoining the existing Kingswood residential area.

·        Riparian corridor-related boundary adjustment – this is an area on the western side of O’Connell Street in and around Werrington Creek and involves expansion of some areas included in the draft LEP and minor contraction of land included near the intersections of O’Connell Street.

·        Western Sydney Institute of TAFE-land related variation – this involves excising from the draft LEP a small section of TAFE owned-land near the intersection of O’Connell Street and Second Avenue.

·        Revised Precinct Centre location – this involves expanding the draft LEP boundaries to incorporate additional land, being a site north of O’Connell Street, intended to accommodate a relocated WELL Precinct Centre and a medium density zone.

These proposed boundary amendments are discussed in greater detail in the remainder of this report.  A map identifying the proposed boundary adjustments is appended to this report and shown as “Map B”.

Proposed Caddens Road Extension at Kingswood

This draft LEP boundary amendment involves a roughly triangular-shaped parcel of land 1.9 hectares in area.  The additional land is bounded by Caddens Road to the south, residential land at Kingswood to the west and the existing western boundary of Caddens in the east.  The site is owned by Landcom. 

 

The development intention arising from the draft LEP boundary amendment is a new linear park (abutting existing Kingswood dwellings), a new point of access onto Caddens Road and several additional dwellings east of the road (roughly north of Kingswood Road).

 

During the Enquiry by Design workshop described earlier in this report, draft concepts identified this area of Caddens (i.e. adjacent to the Kingswood residential neighbourhood) for housing.  These concepts drew resident concern during the workshop process. A report to Council on this matter on 3 November 2003 stated that “the provision of housing in this sensitive location is not necessary given the extensive opportunities to be found elsewhere in the WELL Precinct”.  Subsequent boundaries for the WELL Precinct and the Caddens Release Area sub-precinct (most recently identified in the Refined Concept Plan in October 2006) therefore terminated the western boundary as a northern extension of Kingswood Road.

 

In the time since the adoption of the refined Concept Plan in October 2006, considerable work has been undertaken on developing a Masterplan for the Caddens Release Area.  Amongst this work (carried out by landowner, Landcom but independently reviewed by Council staff) has been a review of the road network in and around the WELL Precinct, including vehicle movements.  A Transport Management and Accessibility Plan (TMAP) applying to the whole of the WELL Precinct has also been completed.  The Landcom review – supported by Council’s engineering staff - indicated that the vertical alignment of Caddens Road does not comply with best practice road design.  The history of traffic accidents on the road, a number of which have led to fatalities, has also been at the forefront of the design approach.

 

In the planning for Caddens Release Area, staff have consistently required that a Caddens Road bypass be established through the Release Area to divert new traffic from the existing through road.  More specifically – and relevant to this proposed LEP boundary amendment – the existing intersection of Kingswood Road and Caddens Road is a T junction only 40 metres east of a crest in Caddens Road.  This creates a very dangerous driving situation due to limited stopping sight distance of approximately 35 metres.

 

Applying a number of road design alternatives to address this unsafe situation resulted in the proposal to extend the Release Area boundary in order to permit the Caddens bypass road to be moved further west.  The result of this intersection relocation is:

 

·        Considerable improvement in sight distances available to drivers;

·        Changes in road hierarchy, such that Caddens Road has a lesser role than Kingswood Road;

·        The new Caddens Road bypass running through the Caddens Release Area and terminating further west enables construction of intersections with Caddens Road that will conform with the Australian “Austroads Safe Intersection Sight Distance and Approach Sight Distance Standard for 60 km per hour”.

The consequence of these intersection variations is improved road safety and efficiency.

 

Whilst the proposed improved road treatments do not necessitate an LEP boundary change, good planning practice seeks to address the development of new estates in a holistic manner which provides certainty for existing residents and development proponents.  Incorporating the draft LEP boundary change to address current and future Caddens Road design shortcomings also enables formalisation of an open space buffer between existing Kingswood residents and the new Caddens Release Area. 

 

The new landscaped buffer will form a linear park (approximately 27 metres wide) which extends from Caddens Road north to Manning Street, incorporating a physical separation from existing houses and proposed residential development.   The park may also incorporate a cycyleway/pedestrian path which could connect with the existing pedestrian thoroughfare at the southern end of Kingscote Place.  It is considered the provision of a landscaped buffer will positively address resident concerns outlined in previous community consultations.

Riparian corridor-related boundary amendments

The WELL Precinct Strategy 2004 Concept Plan identified an indicative area for the WELL Precinct Centre as land stretching from Second Avenue in the north to O’Connell Street in the south. The Refined Concept Plan adopted by Council in October 2006 confirmed a proposed Precinct Centre location at the intersection of Second Avenue and O’Connell Street (both sides).

 

Since adoption of the Refined Concept Plan, UWS, Landcom and Council have received community feedback outlining concern about the implications of the proposed precinct centre location for the riparian areas around Werrington Creek, man made ponds, surrounding vegetation and potential threatened species.  Partly in response to this concern and partly due to perceived functional limitations associated with the Precinct Centre location, Landcom and the University of Western Sydney undertook detailed ecological studies.  These studies included targeted surveys for threatened flora and fauna species and communities known in the locality of the site and an assessment of the conservation significance of found species and communities across the site.

 

The surveys revealed two threatened ecological communities listed under the Threatened Species Act 1995 within the Werrington Creek Riparian corridor, being Cumberland Plain Woodland and Sydney Coastal River Flat Forest.  Additionally, three threatened bat species, the threatened Cumberland Plain Woodland Snail and a number of hollow bearing trees were identified within the Werrington Creek riparian corridor.  As a result of these findings, Landcom’s ecological assessment concluded that the Werrington Creek riparian corridor “is considered to be of high ecological and conservation value and if appropriately rehabilitated and managed could continue to function as significant habitat for terrestrial flora and fauna in the future.”  Council specialist staff reviewing the study subsequently independently endorsed these findings.

 

The status of this land under the Threatened Species Act – combined with the classification of Werrington Creek corridor as a class 2 watercourse (requiring at least a 30 metre buffer on either side of the creek) by the Department of Water and Energy has obvious implications for not only the boundaries of the Caddens Release Area LEP, but also for land uses within this section of the sub-precinct.  These studies have also indicated the importance of conserving the creek line as a functioning riparian system and to achieve this outcome, development activity is required to be restricted within the riparian corridor. 

 

As a consequence of the above findings, it is no longer considered appropriate for the Precinct Centre to remain at the intersection of Second Avenue and O’Connell Streets.  Moreover, the initial 100 metre wide LEP boundary running parallel to O’Connell Street is no longer relevant given the extent of the identified riparian corridor which more naturally follows a winding creek line. 

 

The identification of the riparian corridor is consistent with the direction which has been pursued in the University’s recent masterplan process adopted for their Kingswood campus. 

 

For these reasons, it is concluded that the LEP boundary for this section of Caddens Release Area should be amended to be consistent with appropriate ecological boundaries rather than more arbitrary planning boundaries. 

Western Sydney Institute of TAFE land-related boundary amendment

Adopting an amended riparian corridor boundary which excludes contemplation of a Precinct Centre also affects the need to include the south-western section of the Western Sydney Institute of TAFE site in O’Connell Street which was incorporated initially to provide an opportunity for a direct interface with the proposed Precinct Centre.  Accordingly, it is proposed that the TAFE site be removed from the LEP boundary for Caddens Release at this stage. 

 

The area of land involved on the eastern side is relatively minor, being only 1.6 hectares in area and the Refined Concept Plan had only intended that the future zoning be educational (consistent with its current zoning).

 

Discussions with Western Sydney Institute of TAFE have revealed they raise no objection to the deletion of their site from the Caddens Release Area draft LEP.  The area of land involved is small (compared to TAFE’s overall holdings), and it is recognised there is opportunity to address the future zoning of the TAFE site through Penrith City wide LEP process.  TAFE has also indicated it has no immediate intentions to develop the site.

Revised Precinct Centre Location Boundary

The need for a Precinct Centre and its preferred location was incorporated as a fundamental concept in the adopted WELL Precinct Strategy 2004.  The economic studies undertaken at the time which underpinned this initiative recommended a centre of up to 10,000m2 floor space which would service the day to day retail and commercial needs of the surrounding residential community, UWS and TAFE and identified employment areas.  The Centre is also contemplated should contain opportunities for community facilities and University activities, including student housing to assist in reinforcing its role as a centre for community and student interaction and a connector of the disparate education campuses. 

 

As a result of the review of environmental constraints applying to the original Precinct Centre site on the corner of Second Avenue and O’Connell Street, it was necessary to find an alternative location for the essential community hub role intended for the Precinct Centre. Following extensive examination of various sites and review of previous studies, the site known as the former Kingswood Drive In located on UWS land at the intersection of O’Connell Street was selected as it -

 

·        Has a single owner and willing vendor (UWS)

·        Links to and has a close relationship with the residential community in the Caddens Release Area

·        Is environmentally unconstrained

·        Is rectilinear in shape and thus easier to develop

·        Is suitable in size for retail, commercial and community activities

·        Provides good retail exposure

·        Provides opportunities for synergies between the existing community, the proposed community and education and enterprise activities

·        Is relatively central within the WELL Precinct; and

·        Provides the opportunity to link the UWS and TAFE campuses to the community activity hub. 

The proposed site is judged to be more likely to achieve integration with not only the residential community that it serves but also with open space and public facilities (such as the public school) which will be located nearby to the east in O’Connell Street.  A Precinct Centre on this site remains consistent with the WELL Concept Plan and its underlying principles.

 

The amended LEP boundary associated with the Precinct Centre relocation also incorporates variations to enable additional land to be identified for medium density residential use, ie, on the northern side of O’Connell Street.  Landcom’s submission requesting LEP boundary amendments for medium density development on this site identifies it as being one of the few locations offering unimpeded topography suited for medium density development, thereby enabling a variety of development types for a range of households to be provided at Caddens.  It would also offer support to the Precinct Centre by providing a critical mass and population to support the Centre.

This approach is consistent with contemporary planning practice which seeks to achieve appropriate urban consolidation in part through locating compatible and complementary land uses in close proximity to each other.  Siting the proposed multi unit/medium density housing precinct in the immediate vicinity of the relocated Precinct Centre is supportive of these principles. 

Next Steps

If Council resolves to amend the boundaries for the draft LEP applying to the Caddens Release Area, the process for progressing the amendments would involve the following steps:

 

·        Advising the Department of Planning of Council’s resolution in accordance with section 54 of the Environmental Planning & Assessment (EP&A) Act.

·        Notifying relevant government agencies of the amended boundaries for the Caddens draft LEP and seeking their comments in accordance with section 62 of the EP&A Act. This would occur through December 2007/January 2008.

·        Finalisation of the draft LEP and DCP for Caddens Release Area (informed by government agency responses).  This work is already well advanced and is expected to be completed to enable a report to Council seeking adoption of the draft LEP and DCP for the purposes of public exhibition in February 2008.

·        Following endorsement by Council, referring the draft LEP to the Department of Planning, seeking a Certificate enabling exhibition of the draft Plan under section 65 of the EP&A Act.

·        Exhibition of the draft LEP and draft DCP, expected to be undertaken in April 2008.

·        Council consideration of submissions relating to the draft Plans and adoption of the final version of the draft LEP and DCP in late May/June 2008.

·        Upon adoption of the plans by Council, referring the matter to the DoP to arrange gazettal.

 

The development of a draft Section 94 Development Contributions Plan for the WELL Precinct has been finalised as is the subject of a separate report to tonight’s Policy Review Committee meeting.

Conclusion

Since Council’s adoption of the draft Caddens LEP boundary in November 2004 considerable work has been undertaken to more fully understand the opportunities and constraints that apply to the WELL Precinct generally and Caddens Release Area more specifically. Constraints identified within Caddens include the riparian area, threatened species, unsafe road designs and environmental limitations associated with the location of the Precinct Centre. 

 

In recognition of these constraints, a revised planning response has been required to ensure appropriate development outcomes for future and existing residents and visitors to the precinct as well as for the natural environment.  As outlined in the report, these refinements necessitate amendments to the boundaries of the Caddens Release Area draft LEP adopted by Council in November 2004.  Accordingly, it is recommended  that revisions to the boundaries applying to the draft LEP for Caddens Release Area be supported by Council and that the Department of Planning be notified.


 

RECOMMENDATION

That:

1.     The information contained in the report on Caddens draft Local Environmental Plan - Boundary Amendment be received

2.     Council resolve to prepare and exhibit a draft Local Environmental Plan for the Caddens Release Area in accordance with the provisions of the Environmental Planning & Assessment Act and Regulations, as shown on the map appended to the report

3.     Council advise the Department of Planning of its resolution in accordance with Section 54 of the Environmental Planning & Assessment Act

4.     Council advise relevant government agencies of its resolution and seek their advice on the matter in accordance with section 62 of the Environmental Planning & Assessment Act.

 

ATTACHMENTS/APPENDICES

1. View

Caddens Release Area Original LEP Boundary

1 Page

Appendix

2. View

Caddens Release Area Proposed LEP Boundary

1 Page

Appendix

  


Policy Review Committee Meeting

19 November 2007

Appendix 1 - Caddens Release Area Original LEP Boundary

 

 

 

 


Policy Review Committee Meeting

19 November 2007

Appendix 2 - Caddens Release Area Proposed LEP Boundary

 

 

 

 


Policy Review Committee Meeting

19 November 2007

The City as a Social Place

 

 

The City as a Social Place

 

 

8

Werrington Enterprise Living and Learning (WELL) Precinct - Draft Section 94 Development Contributions Plan   

 

Compiled by:                Anthony Milanoli, Senior Environmental Planner

Authorised by:             Roger Nethercote, Environmental Planning Manager   

Strategic Program Term Achievement: Timely delivery of services to new release areas is being secured.

Critical Action: Prepare and implement services and infrastructure delivery plans for each new release area that ensures that the early establishment of services and facilities match community needs.

     

Purpose:

To present a draft Section 94 Development Contributions Plan for the Werrington Enterprise Living and Learning Precinct for consideration by Council.  The report recommends exhibition of the draft Section 94 Development Contrbutions Plan for the WELL Precinct.

 

Background to the WELL Precinct

The Werrington Enterprise Living and Learning (WELL) Precinct is an area of strategic importance within both Penrith City and the broader region, given its scale, proximity to established urban development and infrastructure, tertiary institutions, and the prospect of new transport linkages. The Precinct is sizeable, with an area of approximately 670 hectares. The Precinct is bounded by the Western Railway line and the Victoria Street/ Shaw Park precinct to the north, French Street/ O’Connell Street, the UWS Kingswood Campus and Kingswood residential area to the west, Caddens Road and the M4 motorway to the south, and the Claremont Meadows residential area and Werrington Road to the east. 

 

In recognition of the key role of the WELL Precinct within Penrith City, Council – in consultation with the community, State government and landowners - has been planning for its appropriate redevelopment. In November 2004, Council adopted the WELL Precinct Strategy. The Strategy outlines a clear framework within which the area’s potential can evolve into quality, sustainable urban outcomes for the City of Penrith and the Region.

 

Council, with its Project partners - Landcom and the University of Western Sydney – have steered a number of studies to further refine the strategic objectives for the WELL Precinct. That planning resulted in the Refined Concept Plan for the WELL Precinct, which was adopted by Council on 23 October 2006.

 

Further planning for the WELL Precinct has been progressing since adoption of the Concept Plan, including:

 

·        Gazetting a local environmental plan for Werrington Mixed Use area in February 2007;

·        Continuing lobbying (with Mayoral support) of the Ministry of Transport in relation to the proposed University railway station (including representations to the Minister in September 2007)

·        Preparing a draft Local Environmental Plan and draft Development Control Plan for South Werrington Urban Village (adopted for exhibition by Council in October 2007);

·        Liaising with Landcom and UWS throughout 2007 to progress the Masterplan for the Caddens Release Area;

·        Preparing a draft section 94 Development Contributions Plan which would apply to the WELL Precinct; and

·        Liaising with UWS in the development of their Kingswood and South Werrington Campus Masterplan.

A draft Section 94 Development Contributions Plan has now been prepared and is present to Council for consideration for moving to public exhibition.

WELL Precinct-wide Approach

The primary reasoning behind producing a WELL Precinct-wide Contributions Plan, rather than more specific, sub-precinct contributions plans, is in order to assist in achieving Council’s vision for a cohesive precinct integrated with its surrounds.  An over-arching Contributions Plan is particularly necessary in a setting which is so expansive in area, contains diverse land ownership and generates different development scenarios, both with respect to type and timing of development.

 

1.  Achieving the WELL Precinct Vision

 

The WELL Precinct Strategy Vision proposes creating a model for sustainable urban development, within an internationally renowned destination of choice for business residents and students.  Moreover, the Vision seeks synergies arising from the collective presence of these groups to energise the Precinct and achieve seamless integration of those people and activities and the cosmopolitan lifestyle choices it subsequently generates and offers.  The draft WELL Contributions plan is the means whereby this vision of integration and synergy is expressed in terms of local infrastructure requirements that will address the diverse needs of the incoming residents, employees and student populations.

 

2.  Coherently and economically addressing the variety of WELL sub-precincts and land uses

 

For the purposes of the draft S.94 Plan, the WELL Precinct comprises the following sub-precincts:

 

·        South Werrington Urban Village

·        Caddens (incorporating the Precinct Centre)

·        North Werrington

·        UWS North Werrington

·        Werrington Mixed Use Area

·        UWS and TAFE South Werrington

·        South Werrington Private Lands

·        UWS Kingswood.

As indicated in Council’s adopted Concept Plan, each of these precincts will have a different mix of development, such as residential (at varying densities), employment (including creative industries, high tech, retailing), educational and special uses (such as the State Archives and Cobham Remand Centre).

 

In spite of the diversity of precincts and land uses, many of the facilities that the various precincts require are common and can be effectively and economically provided when planned, acquired and embellished in a coherent manner under the umbrella of a common Contributions Plan.  This is especially the case for infrastructure such as roads, open space and water management facilities.

 

3.  Responding to the current and likely future variety of landowners within WELL

 

At least 18 owners currently have landholdings within the WELL Precinct.  The future sale of land holdings is likely to increase the number of owners.

 

The WELL-wide section 94 plan will ensure that demand arising from development by these various owners - and those to whom they may sell in the future - within these various sub-precincts is co-ordinated across the life of the entire Precinct’s redevelopment.

 

4. Readiness to address imminent development potential

 

Development within the WELL Precinct is imminent.  The University of Western Sydney is completing Master Planning for its campuses, which will see the consolidation of facilities and opportunities for other land uses emerging.  An LEP has been gazetted for Werrington Mixed Use Area.  Council resolved in October 2007 to exhibit a draft LEP and DCP for South Werrington Urban Village.  A report on the Caddens draft LEP and DCP is expected to be presented to Council in early 2008.

 

The scale and variety of development looming as a consequence of these actions necessitates that a Contributions Plan be in place to not only ensure that Council may collect funds from the time of the first approval, but will provide developers/landowners with clear direction on costs that will be associated with their projects, thereby enhancing their ability to plan ahead.

Key Components of the WELL Draft Contributions Plan

All Section 94 Contributions Plans must be prepared having regard to the Department of Planning’s Practice Notes on the issue and hence all plans must incorporate sections describing:

 

·        How the plan will be administered,

·        What the plan will fund

·        The link between new development, demand and the facilities proposed

·        How contributions are calculated

·        How costs are apportioned amongst various developments

·        Supporting material necessary to interpret the above data (e.g. maps, tables and schedules)

The draft Plan, which has emerged from extensive discussions with the project proponents, UWS and Landcom, addresses these requirements.  A preliminary draft of the plan was discussed with relevant Council staff and with the project proponents (UWS and Landcom). 

 

The draft Plan has been based on key research which included not only the background planning studies essential for the eventual LEPs and DCPs which will apply to the Precinct, but more specific studies including:

 

·        Independently valuing all landholdings likely to be acquired for construction of facilities. This is in order to ensure market rates will be paid to owners and sufficient funds will be available for this purpose.  This includes sites for open space/recreation facilities, water management and the community centre.

·        Independently quantifying and costing the water management facilities; and

·        Preparing a Transport Management and Accessibility Plan which outlines the traffic and transport measures needed to accommodate new growth as well as costing these facilities.

An independent consultant specialising in Section 94 Contributions Plans was engaged to review all the relevant background planning studies, specialist reports and Council standards and prepare the draft Plan consistent with the legislation and Department of Planning’s Practice Notes.

Key Growth Projections

Some of the key growth scenarios envisaged in the plan – and which generate the need for new facilities - within the WELL Precinct include:

·        Development scenarios in which most residential growth occurs between 2010 and 2020 while most employment growth occurs between 2016 and beyond 2021. As stated earlier however, some sub-precincts are likely to experience growth sooner;

·        Resident population growth of approximately 6,600 persons (although this may be refined as the precise intentions for each of the residential precincts is determined by owners/developers);

·        An average occupancy rate for residential development of 2.7 persons per dwelling. The actual occupancies vary from 3.1 persons (for new lots and free-standing dwellings likely to accommodate young families) to 1.5 persons per dwelling (housing for older people); 

·        Workforce growth of approximately 8,700 employees;

·        Growth at TAFE and UWS of approximately 5,100 students.

Facilities proposed to be funded by the draft Contributions Plan

The WELL Precinct draft Contributions Plan identifies a range of required capital works and associated cost estimates that support the new urban development.  The scope of works includes:

 

·        New roads – this comprises an east-west collector road and circulation route in the north of the Precinct, leading from South Werrington Urban Village to French Street in Kingswood.

·        Local road improvements – this constitutes a variety of measures including upgrading of collector roads (being Caddens Road, O’Connell Street and French Street), intersection improvements and transport services (such as  bus shelters and cycle parking).

·        Active open space - comprising three parcels, each approximately 3 hectares in area and located on Caddens Road, O’Connell Street and the Great Western Highway. These parks would incorporate playing fields or other opportunities for organised sports, along with amenities/storage buildings and car parks.

·        Passive open space - being seven parcels, varying in size from 0.4 hectares to 3 hectares, dotted throughout the WELL Precinct, from South Werrington in the north through to Kingswood in the south west. These parks are located in strategic areas such as hilltops (within Caddens and Werrington), connected to existing surrounding parks (such as adjoining Claremont Meadows) or provide a buffer and corridor connector (as occurs with the park proposed to adjoin existing Kingswood residences). These parks would incorporate seating, lighting, children’s play equipment and planting.

·        Cycleways/pedestrian paths – a network of paths is intended to link the various sub-precincts and provide a means of sustainable, non-motorised transport throughout the WELL Precinct. The paths will connect with surrounding existing neighbourhoods, pathways and roads and aim to help achieve a 10% reduction in otherwise expected vehicular trip numbers. The precise location of the network may vary following final estate planning within each sub-precinct, however the extent of the routes is unlikely to change significantly.

·        Water management facilities – these facilities are intended to detain and treat stormwater generated in the WELL precinct and would be designed to be attractive and integrate seamlessly and positively with their immediate settings. They will be a mix of built and natural elements and are located evenly across the Precinct.

·        Community facilities – these comprise a multi purpose building (approximately 440 m2 in area) and a community development worker. The community centre will be located in the precinct centre and will incorporate meeting and training rooms, kitchenette, offices and store rooms along with amenities and will focus on life-long learning. The community development worker will be a temporary (3 years maximum), part-time position, engaged to work with new residents of the WELL Precinct. The worker would identify needs, build social capital and develop community identity.

·        Plan preparation costs – these are the costs directly associated with the preparation of the plan, including the plan itself and key documents that informed the plan – such as land valuations, Transport Management and Accessibility Plan (TMAP) and independent appraisal of the costs and size associated with Water Management Facilities.

The WELL draft Contributions Plan does not propose a flat contribution rate across the Precinct, but rather divides the area into catchments - for the purpose of water management facilities – as well as calculating “net developable areas”. This approach enables contributions to be apportioned against the extent of development expected on a given site within a given sub-precinct for a particular land use, thereby ensuring equity in the plan.

Regional Infrastructure

In addition to the Section 94 Development Contributions that will apply within the WELL Precinct to provide local facilities associated with additional demand, the State government is identifying likely Regional Infrastructure required to service the precinct. This is expected to result in the imposition on developers of a Regional Infrastructure Levy as currently applies to Growth Centres.  The Department of Planning we understand are currently reviewing the approach to Regional Infrastructure Levies and the cost per additional residential dwelling.

 

On 23 August 2007 relevant government agencies (e.g. Integral Energy, the Roads and Traffic Authority, Sydney Water, the Ministry of Transport, Railcorp, the Department of Planning), Council officers, Landcom and UWS were invited to a Planning Workshop seeking to identify infrastructure requirements for the development expected in the WELL Precinct.

 

Some of the key issues arising from the State agencies planning workshop included:

 

·        The link between eventual road infrastructure requirements and whether the proposed University railway station proceeds (this will affect transport mode share).

·        Acquisition and construction costs for the Werrington Arterial connection between the M4 and the Great Western Highway.

·        The strategic bus routes through Caddens Release Area.

·        The need for a new electrical zone substation to supply the entire WELL Precinct (to be located at Claremont Meadows) and completed by April 2010. This will slow the rollout of development within the precinct.

·        The possible need for elevated reservoirs to service land above the RL60 mark. Key issues on water and sewer supply (including discussion on use of recycled water as per Rouse Hill) will not be available until late November 2007.

·        The need for a new primary school to serve the proposed additional dwellings. This will necessitate provision of a 3 hectare school site. Additional facilities may also be required for high schools, students with special needs requirements and the TAFE.

·        TAFE concerns that if the proposed UWS Railway Station and other strategic bus corridor initiatives did not advance then new traffic and access arrangements may be required to accommodate increased TAFE numbers.

Agencies will be providing requirements to DOP and the State Government’s Land Supply CEO’s Group. 

Planning Agreements

The delivery of employment development has in the planning for WELL been pursued on a precinct-wide basis and a wide range of development activities have been identified which will meet Council’s policy for job creation in the area.  The roll-out of jobs is connected to the planned development for each of the residential sub-precincts and initiatives will be brought forward as they establish. 

 

Affordable housing opportunities are being pursued with the land owner groups advancing the plans for both the South Werrington Urban Village and the Caddens Release Area.  At this stage, the finalisation of an affordable housing response across the WELL Precinct is yet to occur.  This element, as was the case with Glenmore Park Stage 2 Release Area, may need to be further addressed through the introduction of Planning Agreements if a suitable delivery mechanism is not identified by the developer groups.

 

There are currently no other elements identified which would require the introduction of Planning Agreements.

Recent State Government Announcements Regarding Development Contributions

On 12 October 2007, the Premier announced that the State Government was reviewing developer contributions and regional infrastructure levies that would apply to Sydney’s growth centres.  The announcement suggested there would eventually be reductions of around $10,000 per additional lot for State infrastructure levies and around $15,000 per lot for local development contributions.

 

On 6 November 2007 the NSW Department of Planning issued a Planning Circular on “Infrastructure Contributions”.  The purpose of the Circular is to provide councils, relevant state agencies, the development industry and the community with advice regarding setting and collection of infrastructure contributions.  The Circular confirmed that levies for Infrastructure funded by the State will be reduced from $33,000 to $23,000 per lot.

 

In the case of local development contributions, the Circular outlines instructions applying to new plans not in force by 12 November 2007.  New contribution plans may only fund:

 

·        local roads

·        local bus infrastructure

·        local parks that service a development site or precinct

·        drainage and water management expenses

·        land and facilities for local community infrastructure that services a development site or precinct

·        land for other community infrastructure and recreation facilities

All other costs - such as facilities benefiting existing communities (including Council or district-wide community and recreation facilities) are intended to no longer be recovered through local contributions.  It was also indicated Councils can no longer collect contributions to fund acquisition of land for riparian corridors, which will be dealt with through zoning controls.  The Circular went on to advise all Development Contributions Plans must now be endorsed by the Minister for Planning or his delegate.

 

It was also indicated that for all future greenfield release areas in NSW a single contribution combining state and local infrastructure charges will be set on a developable area basis.  Contributions will be collected in two stages, the first stage being a rezoning infrastructure contribution to recover 25% of infrastructure costs at rezoning stage, and a serviced infrastructure contribution to recover the remaining 75% of infrastructure costs at subdivision stage.  The administration of contribution payments is yet to be detailed.

 

The Circular advised that Ministerial guidelines and procedures to give effect to these reforms are also being developed and will be distributed to Councils shortly.

 

We are currently assessing the implications of the Government’s announcements and will bring forward a report to Council shortly examining the effect of the new arrangements.  That review will be informed by the Ministerial guidelines when they are published.

 

The draft Plan for the WELL Precinct, on the surface of it, would generally comply with the provisions outlined in the Circular, however that would need to be re-examined at the point when further detailed guidelines are available from DoP.  In the absence of any other information, it is appropriate in our view to continue to move forward with the exhibition of the draft Plan as formulated.

Next Steps

With the completion of the draft Plan, the next step in bringing the draft Plan into effect is public exhibition of the document to enable community feedback on the draft Plan.  In accordance with the provisions of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act and Regulations, the draft Plan is required to be exhibited for a period of 28 days.  A public notice will be placed in local newspapers advising the community of the exhibition of the draft Plan and land owners within the area covered by the draft Plan will be advised by letter. 

 

Given the pending Christmas and New Year holiday break, the minimum 28 day public exhibition process will need to be extended to the end of January 2008. 

 

At the conclusion of the exhibition period public submissions will be reviewed by staff and a further report presented to Council identifying the need for any amendments to the plan before its final adoption and implementation. This report is likely to be presented to Council in February 2008.

Conclusion

The WELL Precinct draft Contributions Plan is intended to ensure that the demand for new local facilities arising from new development within the precinct will be addressed in a timely and cost effective manner whilst seeking to achieve Council’s vision for the Precinct.

 

The draft Contributions Plan provides the legal means of collecting for a wide range of facilities including roads and traffic management, open space and recreation, community facilities, water management and cycleways/pathways.

 

The completion of the WELL Precinct draft Contributions Plan represents another significant element in the implementation of the planning framework that will underpin development of this strategic area.

 

In light of the above, it is recommended that Council resolve to exhibit the attached draft Section 94 Contributions Plan for an extended period between early December 2007 and 31 January 2008.  This action is the next step in progressing the planning for the WELL Precinct and ensuring appropriate local infrastructure will be available to meet demand arising from projected new development.

 

 

RECOMMENDATION

That:

1.     The information contained in the report on theWerrington Enterprise Living and Learning (WELL) Precinct - Draft Section 94 Development Contributions Plan be received

2.     In accordance with the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 and the Regulations 2000, the WELL Precinct Draft Section 94 Development Contributions Plan be publicly exhibited for an extended period between early December 2007 and 31 January 2008

3.     A further report be presented to Council, following public exhibition of the draft Section 94 Development Contributions Plan, advising of the outcomes of the exhibition and making further recommendations relating to the adoption of the final Plan

4.     The University of Western Sydney and Landcom be advised of Council’s decision

 

ATTACHMENTS/APPENDICES

1.  

WELL Draft Development Contributions Plan

61 Pages

Attachment

  


Policy Review Committee Meeting

19 November 2007

The City as a Social Place

 

 

The City as a Social Place

 

 

9

Werrington Enterprise Living and Learning (WELL) Precinct - Community Consultation   

 

Compiled by:                Anthony Milanoli, Senior Environmental Planner

Authorised by:             Roger Nethercote, Environmental Planning Manager

Paul Lemm, Development Services Manager   

Strategic Program Term Achievement: Cohesive communities are formed based on sustainable, safe and satisfying living and working environments.

Critical Action: Prepare and implement plans (based on Council's Sustainability Blueprint for new Release Areas) for each new release area that deliver quality, sustainable living and working environments..

     

Purpose:

This report responds to a Council request for advice on the consultation processes being advanced for the WELL Precinct.  The report recommends that the information contained in this report be received.

 

Background

On 9 July 2007 Council received and noted a report on the University of Western Sydney (UWS) Nepean Campus Masterplan.  A presentation was provided by Rhonda Hawkins, Deputy Vice Chancellor Corporate Services and Prof Kevin Sproats, Pro Vice Chancellor Campus Development, UWS. It was resolved that a report be presented to Council regarding the future consultation process on the Werrington Enterprise Living and Learning (WELL) Precinct.

 

In considering the July report and presentation, Councillors expressed interest in ensuring that Masterplan intentions for the UWS site, and the WELL Precinct more broadly, were being effectively communicated to the community, and that public expectations were framed by the adopted WELL Concept Plan.  It will be recalled Council also expressed interest in the information presented on the Anglican Retirement Village proposal for housing for older persons on land at the western edge of the UWS Kingswood campus and community reaction to that proposal.  Our consideration of that proposition and related community consultation has moved forward, the status of which is outlined in this report. 

 

The WELL Precinct

 

The WELL Precinct is an area of approximately 670 hectares, bounded by the Western Railway and the Victoria Street / Shaw Park precinct to the north, French Street / O’Connell Street, and the UWS Kingswood Campus and Kingswood residential area to the west, Caddens Road and the M4 motorway to the south, and the Claremont Meadows residential area and Werrington Road to the east.

 

The Precinct is of strategic importance within both Penrith City and the broader region, given its scale, proximity to established urban development and infrastructure, tertiary institutions and the prospect of new transport linkages.

 

In November 2004 Council adopted the WELL Precinct Strategy.  The Strategy outlines a clear framework within which the area’s potential can evolve into quality, sustainable urban outcomes for the City of Penrith and the Region.  Council, with its project partners – Landcom and the University of Sydney – have steered a number of studies to further refine the strategic objectives for the Precinct.  That planning resulted in the refined Concept Plan for the WELL Precinct, which was adopted by Council on 23 October 2006. 

 

Further work on various planning processes related to the WELL planning project has been progressing since adoption of the Concept Plan, including:

·           Conducting an Information Day in November 2006 (discussed in more detail later in this report);

·           Gazettal of a Local Environmental Plan for Werrington Mixed Use area in February 2007;

·           Adoption of a draft Local Environmental Plan and Development Control Plan for South Werrington Urban Village on 15 October 2007 (likely to be exhibited in late 2007 / early 2008);

·           Concluding a draft Section 94 Development Contributions Plan (scheduled for consideration by Council on 19 November 2007);

·           Continuing lobbying of the Ministry of Transport in relation to the proposed University Railway Station; and

·           Liaising with project partners to progress the masterplan for Caddens Release Area (including refining the draft LEP boundaries, a report on which appears elsewhere in tonight’s Business Paper).

 

History of Consultation and Communication Regarding the WELL Precinct

 

The history of consultation (at a community, landowner / proponent and Councillor level) for the WELL Precinct has been extensive, and can be summarised as follows:

·           Developing a WELL Communications Strategy in March – June 2003, which outlined a wide range of measures (including the initiatives discussed below) to keep the community informed and provide opportunities for feedback. 

·           Holding an Enquiry by Design Workshop in July 2003, to which nearly 5,000 residents were invited and which subsequently involved 250 residents, along with developers, architects and landowners.

·           Conducting a WELL Information Day, held in November 2006.

·           Issuing 4 WELL Precinct newsletters incorporating information on the progress of the WELL Precinct planning process.  The newsletters are circulated to around 6,000 households in and around the WELL Precinct.

·           Issuing a WELL-related media release in November 2004.

·           Issuing a WELL Information Day-related media release and several Information Day newspaper notices in November 2006;

·           Presenting six WELL-wide-related reports to Council (between September 2003 and October 2006) and additional reports on sub-precincts such as South Werrington Urban Village, UWS Masterplan and Werrington Mixed Use Area.

·           Providing updates on progress of the WELL planning in Council’s City-wide Community Newsletter.

·           Providing an evaluation of progress on the WELL Precinct within the status report to Council in February 2007;

·           Encouraging Caddens Release Area landowner consultation by a Landcom-engaged liaison officer (involving regular updating of landowners regarding progress of masterplanning and background studies for Caddens);

·           Maintaining a WELL Precinct website, which is regularly updated to keep the community informed of progress on the project.

 

In the past few months further community awareness of Council’s intentions for the WELL Precinct has been achieved via:

·           Presenting the WELL Precinct Concept Plan at the UWS/Anglican Retirement Village Proposal-related Information Day held at the subject site (within UWS) on Saturday 25 August 2007.  This was attended by approximately 40 residents and enabled Environmental Planning staff to explain the WELL Precinct Strategy generally and to put the retirement village proposal into context within that Strategy.

·           Presenting the Concept Plan at the Claremont Meadows Community Open Day on 2 November 2007 and discussing its implications with a significant number of local residents.

 

This record of community consultation is considered to be consistent with the relevant action contained in section 7.2.1 of the Council-adopted WELL Precinct Strategy, which requires that “Future planning is to include comprehensive and inclusive community consultation and participation in development of future land use and development outcomes”.

 

WELL Public Information Day and Extended Public Exhibition

 

In November 2006, 6,000 newsletters were distributed to the suburbs of Cambridge Park, Werrington, Claremont Meadows, Kingswood and Orchard Hills, inviting the community to attend the WELL Information Day.  In addition to the newsletter, notices were placed in Penrith Press (on 14 and 21 November 2006) and the Western Weekender (on 17 November) alerting the wider public to the Information Day.  A Mayoral item in a Council column appearing in the Penrith Press on 21 November 2007 directed readers to the WELL Information Day.  Local State Members were formally advised by letter of the Information Day and invited to attend.

 

The Information Day was initiated by Council and co-funded by Landcom (which is proposing residential development of the Caddens Release Area.  The purpose of the Information Day was to enable the community to view the refined Concept Plan adopted by Council for the WELL Precinct and provide feedback on the planning initiatives.

 

The Information Day was held on Saturday 25 November 2005 at Kingswood TAFE.  Four Council officers attended the Information Day to answer questions regarding the WELL Precinct.  A Landcom representative also attended.  In recognition of the pecuniary interest of the WELL project partners, the event was independently facilitated by Elton Consulting, who subsequently produced a report on the occasion, outlining attendance and feedback.

 

A total of 98 people attended the Information Day.  In terms of feedback, five ‘Issues Forms’ were received on the day, and a further 13 forms and an email were received by Elton Consulting after the event.  The major issues summarised from the Information Day were:

·           Infrastructure – ensuring that adequate services and facilities, particularly public transport, footpaths, water and sewer service adequacy, are provided with the development.

·           Public Transport – supportive of the proposed UWS Railway Station proceeding and improved bus transport to the area.

·           Roads and Traffic – seeking improvements to the existing road network to accommodate the new development including the proposed Precinct Centre, and upgrading Caddens Road and supportive of the proposed Werrington Arterial with connection to the M4 being advanced.

·           Land uses – confirmation sought on the extent of the land included in the development areas, particularly UWS campuses and the related extent of the proposed residential zonings.

·           Residential housing design – concern expressed regarding new housing being located where it would interface with established residential neighbourhoods adjoining WELL (overlooking and visual impact) in Kingswood.

·           Precinct Centre – concern over impact of proposed Centre location on bushland.

·           Open space – need to replace buffer at rear of houses in South Kingswood and retain existing bushland, wetlands and creek system.

·           Planning process – queries raised about the timing of finalisation of the planning process and development occurring.

·           Consultation process – why the University was not represented on the day.

 

In addition to the Information Day, a WELL Public Information display (containing all the material presented at the Information Day) was exhibited at:

·           Council’s St Marys business office and Library from Monday 27 November 2006 to Friday 8 December 2006, during Council’s business hours; and

·           Council’s Civic Centre, Penrith from Monday 11 December 2006 until the end of January 2007 during Council’s business hours.

 

Two officers from Council’s Environmental Planning Department were available to respond to questions from the public regarding the exhibition and noted feedback for further consideration.  The information contained in these exhibitions was also presented on Council’s website.

 

Following the conclusion of the Information Day and the extended exhibition period, Council’s website was updated to advise the community that feedback was being considered and progress on development of sub-precinct plans was continuing.  The feedback received from the Information Day was valuable and has been given consideration in the detailed planning phases advanced for the Caddens and South Werrington Urban Village LEP and Precinct planning responses.

 

Proposed Future Consultation of the WELL Precinct

 

With Council’s adoption of the WELL Precinct Strategy 2004 and refinement and adoption of the WELL Concept Plan in October 2006, it is important to note that the planning process has now entered the Strategy implementation phase. 

 

The emphasis as a result for future community consultations on the WELL Precinct initiatives will be related to the more detailed processes related to the public exhibition of draft LEPs and DCPs for the specific sub-precincts, such as the Caddens Release and South Werrington Urban Village areas.  

 

As outlined earlier in this report, the draft LEP and draft DCP for South Werrington Urban Village were adopted for exhibition by Council on 15 October 2007.  Once the Department of Planning authorises exhibition, public consultation is expected to commence in either late 2007 or early 2008.  If capable of advancing prior to Christmas, the public exhibition will be for an extended period into the new year in recognition of the summer holiday season.

 

With respect to Caddens Release Area, a report recommending amendment of the draft LEP boundary will be considered by Council on 19 November 2007. A further report on the draft LEP and DCP is expected to be considered in February/March 2008 and - subject to DoP endorsement – should be exhibited in April 2008.

 

The scope of the community consultation for Caddens and South Werrington Urban Village draft LEPs and DCPs will include the following elements:

 

·           Written invitation by letter to several thousand households, community groups, businesses and landowners to inspect exhibition material (in person or via Council’s website);

·           A public notice in the local newspaper outlining exhibition details for the plans

·           Presentation of public exhibition material – including maps, draft plans/instruments and explanatory material/background studies at Council’s Penrith and St Marys offices;

·           Presentation of the exhibition material on Council’s website;

·           Telephone and inquiry counter discussions between Council staff and interested members of the public;

·           Letter and email correspondence between staff and the community.

·           Possible incorporation of an article in Council’s quarterly newsletter if the timing of its circulation corresponds with the plan exhibition dates.

 

In relation to exhibition of the WELL-wide draft Development Contributions Plan, the exhibition and public consultation exercise will be similar to that for the LEP and DCP. The only variation to the exhibition process which may apply to the Contributions Plan is that letters to the community will be to those most immediately affected by the plan (eg, relevant landowners, developers, etc).

 

In recent discussions with UWS, it has been indicated that the University will in 2008 be wishing to pursue, in collaboration with Council, a masterplan process for the North Werrington campus which has been identified in the WELL Precinct Strategy as a future business enterprise precinct.  The masterplan will inform the development of a rezoning approach and related DCP for this part of the campus, which is intended to be pursued as part of the City-wide Local Plan Stage 2 process.  This would involve substantial community consultation ranged around public exhibition of the draft Plans. 

 

The remainder of the University and the TAFE campuses are also intended to be incorporated into the City-wide Local Plan Stage 2 and will provide a further opportunity for community input through the public exhibition of the related draft zoning and development guidelines. 

 

All development applications within the Precinct will be notified to adjoining and affected land owners in accordance with Council’s Notification and Advertising DCP. 

 

ARV Retirement Village Proposal

 

In relation to the development of the western edge of the UWS Kingswood campus, Council received a 1 into 2 lot subdivision application which was notified to adjoining land owners and reported to Council on 7 May 2007.  The application was deferred pending further information being provided by the University of Western Sydney and their plans for the property which was the subject of the proposed subdivision.  As mentioned earlier in this report, the Council received a presentation from UWS at its meeting on 9 July 2007.  At this meeting, it became known that it was the University’s intention to dispose of the land to the Anglican Retirement Village group for the establishment of a seniors living retirement village.

 

Due to the extent of public interest in this application, it was considered appropriate that an information day be convened on site for local residents to air their issues.  Council wrote to approximately 125 owners and occupiers who were notified originally regarding the subdivision application, inviting them to attend the information day which was held on 25 August 2007.  Representatives of the University, ARV and Council were in attendance and responded to the issues raised by residents on the day.  Details of the ARV proposal, the recently completed UWS Campus masterplan and information on Council’s adopted WELL Precinct Strategy were displayed and explained to the community. 

 

The information day was well received by the local community who were complimentary of the opportunity being extended to them to discuss the retirement village proposal with ARV and the future planning directions for the University campus with UWS representatives.

 

Following the information day, ARV agreed to submit a concept plan DA for the site.  The proposed development strategy for the site identified in the concept plan seeks the following:

 

·           Two to three storey buildings containing 136 bed Residential Aged Care Facility

·           95 one to two storey Independent Living Units with a mixture of two and three bedroom villa/duplex units.

·           Vehicular access to the site via the UWS internal road that connects Manning Street and O’Connell Street.

·           The Independent Living Units would be largely accessed via O’Connell Street.

·           The Residential Aged Care Facility to rely upon UWS internal roads and Manning Street for access.

·           Existing pedestrian access between the University and Manning Street being retained.

·           The existing vegetation buffer to the adjoining residential properties is to be maintained.

 

This application was notified to those owners and occupiers in the Kingswood area that were previously notified in the subdivision application.  It was decided to extend this notification area due to the extent of public interest previously shown in the matter, an additional 300 owners and occupiers were notified, bring the total number of persons notified to approximately 425.  The public exhibition period concludes on 22 November 2007. 

 

It is anticipated that both the subdivision application and the concept plan for the seniors living retirement village be reported to Council for determination shortly. 

 

Conclusion

 

The WELL Precinct Strategy outlines a framework within the area’s potential can evolve into realisable quality urban outcomes for the City.  It aims to provide guidance for land owners in the Precinct in the advancement of specific development proposals and establishes the principal land use arrangements upon which future plans may be based.  Importantly, it seeks to provide a blueprint for the future of the area which is understood and endorsed by land owners, the local community and government.

 

Council’s efforts in seeking to engage the community regarding the future of the WELL Precinct have been extensive and yielded considerable community feedback.  That input has been valuable and has informed the development of both the WELL Precinct Strategy and Concept Plan initially and also the more detailed sub-precinct planning now advancing.

 

It is relevant to note that Council’s adoption of the WELL Precinct Strategy and Concept Plan as the basis for directing the planning and development outcomes for the area, sees the process now moving into the Strategy implementation phase.  The inclusive engagement philosophy which has been advanced is scheduled to continue during the implementation phase for the Strategy, where the emphasis turns to the statutory planning processes involving the exhibition of draft LEPs, DCPs and infrastructure strategies for specific sub-precincts.

 

We will keep Council informed of proposed approaches to community consultation for each specific planning exercise through further reports on draft plans as they are advanced.

 

 

RECOMMENDATION

That the information contained in the report on Werrington Enterprise Living and Learning (WELL) Precinct - Community Consultation be received.

 

ATTACHMENTS/APPENDICES

There are no attachments for this report.


Policy Review Committee Meeting

19 November 2007

The City as a Social Place

 

 

The City as a Social Place

 

 

10

Erskine Business Park - Amendment to  Section 94 Development Contributions Plan    

 

Compiled by:                Tony Crichton, Senior Environmental Planner

Authorised by:             Roger Nethercote, Environmental Planning Manager   

Strategic Program Term Achievement: Timely delivery of services to new release areas is being secured.

Critical Action: Prepare and implement services and infrastructure delivery plans for each new release area that ensures that the early establishment of services and facilities match community needs.

     

Purpose:

The report outlines the review of the Erskine Park Employment Area Section 94 Contributions Plan which incorporates a revised Biodiversity Management Strategy, revised developable area and works items.  The report also outlines the need for amendment to the Erskine Business Park Development Control Plan 2006.  The report recommends that the Draft Section 94 Plan be placed on Public Exhibition.

 

Background

In early 1999, Council commissioned a detailed environmental study by Biosis Research Pty Limited to examine the nature, extent and quality of flora and fauna within the then named Erskine Park Employment Area.  The purpose of the study was to assess whether the development of the area would have a significant impact on the threatened species and/or endangered ecological communities. 

 

The study identified two endangered ecological communities within the estate, being Cumberland Plains Woodland and Sydney Coastal River Flat Forest. 

 

In order to minimise the impact of development within the estate on the native vegetation and fauna, a Biodiversity Management Strategy was devised and incorporated into the Erskine Park Employment Area Development Control Plan (EPEA DCP).  This Strategy delineated Biodiversity Areas, Biodiversity Corridors and Riparian Regeneration Corridors. 

 

Council, at its Policy Review Committee Meeting of 9 December 2002 adopted the Erskine Park Employment Area Development Control Plan (EPEA DCP) 2002 and the Erskine Park Employment Area Section 94 (EPEA S.94) Contributions Plan 2002.

Revised EPEA Biodiversity Management Strategy

In mid 2003 landowners from the Erskine Park Employment Area (EPEA) requested Council’s support in developing a revised Biodiversity Strategy for EPEA.  The landowners sought an alternative biodiversity corridor which would allow a more practical and viable developable area.  Council supported the revision on the proviso that a genuine balance between development and conservation was pursued and presented to the Department of Environment and Conservation (DECC) for a sign-off.  It was intended this would deliver the dual outcomes of environmental protection and employment generation.

 

Council staff have met with the Department of Environment and Conservation (DECC) (formerly National Parks and Wildlife Service), the DoP and the Erskine Park Landowners Group to devise and negotiate an agreed Biodiversity Strategy for the estate.  The fundamental underlying principle for the Biodiversity Strategy was to provide a biodiversity corridor system linking remnant native vegetation across the site with the riparian biodiversity system within South Creek, the remnant native vegetation in EPEA and the Ropes Creek riparian biodiversity system.

 

Agreement has now been reached between the Erskine Business Park Landowners Group (EBPLOG) and DoP to finalise a Biodiversity Conservation Management Plan for the Erskine Business Park biodiversity conservation area.  The Management Plan establishes the basis for the biodiversity conservation corridor, requirements for its ongoing conservation, care and control.  The DoP has agreed to accept dedication of the land in EBP which makes up the biodiversity conservation corridor.  The EBPLOG has also agreed to pay DoP sufficient funds for the management in perpetuity of the biodiversity conservation lands in EBP.

 

An Agreement, in the form of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) has been made which identifies all of the parties involved, the necessary lands which form the proposed biodiversity conservation corridor and confirms the requirement for land transfers to DoP.  The MOU identifies the Minister for Planning as being responsible for establishing and maintaining the biodiversity within the corridor.  These costs will be paid out of funds specifically created for the biodiversity corridor establishment and ongoing maintenance with the required contributions being paid by the EBPLOG.  No funding is required by Council for the maintenance and management of the land. 

 

Individual Voluntary Planning Agreements between each relevant land owner and the Minister for Planning have also been endorsed which provide the formal mechanism for land transfers and management arrangements.

Commencement of Biodiversity Conservation Scheme

The commencement date of the Biodiversity Conservation Scheme was 25 July 2007.  The land transfer from landowners to DoP will occur in April 2008. 

 

A Crown road reserve traverses the south-western portion of the estate.   Part of the Crown road has now been constructed as the main southern access to the estate off Mamre Road, whilst the remainder of the Crown road is intended to form part of the biodiversity conservation corridor.  The Department of Lands is still to finalise the closure of the Crown road reserve and incorporate it into the biodiversity conservation area with DoP being appointed as reserve trust manager for care, control and management.

 

The key elements of the revised Biodiversity Strategy are:

 

·        The developable area of EBP will increase from 276 ha to approximately 324 ha;

·        A total Biodiversity Conservation Corridor of 209 ha to be managed by DoP includes EBP land (100.4 ha) and DoP corridor lands (109.5 ha) along Ropes and South Creek;

·        The extensive biodiversity revegetation areas outside of EBP are located near EBP in DoP owned Ropes and South Creek corridor lands;

·        These biodiversity conservation areas will form a continuous corridor linking South Creek, EBP and Ropes Creek;

·        The EBP landowners have made a land contribution to DoP of 83.2 ha;

·        The EBP landowners have made a significant cash contribution of $4.5 million towards the establishment of the biodiversity conservation areas, with these costs relating to planting and establishment costs and also towards the ongoing management costs of these lands;

·        The EBP Biodiversity Conservation Corridor in DoP ownership will be managed by Greening Australia on behalf of DoP.

 

As a result of the decision by the State Government to establish and manage the biodiversity conservation corridor, it is now appropriate for Council to review the EPEA DCP and Section 94 Contributions Plan to ensure that there is clarity in the development guidelines and alignment with the key infrastructure funding requirements. 

Development Contributions Plan Amendments

A revised Section 94 Contributions Plan has been prepared which would now be appropriate to publicly exhibit as Erskine Business Park (EPB) Draft Development Contributions Plan 2007.  The draft Plan has been re-structured as per the DoP Development Contribution Plan Practice Notes in a format similar to that used for Glenmore Park Stage 2 Development Contributions Plan.

 

Part A of the draft Plan provides a Summary Schedule of the Works Program and the contributions.  Part B of the draft Plan provides key elements of the administration and operation of the draft Plan including payment, review of contribution rates, credits and timing of works. 

 

Part C of the draft Plan outlines developable area, drainage catchments, drainage works, road catchments, road works, biodiversity conservation works and calculation of contributions.  Part C of the draft Plan also includes the revised development contribution plan maps for Erskine Business Park.  These include drainage, roads and developable area.

 

This report seeks Council’s endorsement to the public exhibition of the draft Erskine Business Park Development Contributions Plan 2007 in accordance with the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act and Regulations 2000.   

 

A copy of the draft Plan is included in the attachments to this report.

 

The key amendments which have been made to the Plan are outlined below.

1.  Developable Area

Erskine Business Park has a total zoned area of 525 ha, including roads.  The adopted S.94 Plan nominated a developable area of 276 ha which could be developed and levied for Section 94 contributions to fund the required roads and drainage infrastructure.  Following recent discussions with EBPLOG land excluded from the developable area includes biodiversity areas, drainage facilities and land under electricity transmission line easements. 

 

The revised total developable area of Erskine Business Park now nominated in the draft Plan has increased from 276 ha to 324 ha.  A plan outlining the developable area of the estate is appended to this report.

2.  Drainage Contributions

The cost of drainage works in the draft Plan for the Western Precinct has been substantially lowered due to a reduced works requirement in the Western Catchment where, as a result of the drainage basin design for the facility now established south of Erskine Park Road, the original drainage works proposed north of this road are no longer required.  However, the cost of drainage works and hence the contribution rates for the Eastern Precinct have increased slightly in line with CPI adjustments. The contribution rates per developable hectare for each catchment have reflected the works costs.  The new rates are listed in the summary tables in Part A of the draft Plan. 

3.  Roads & Traffic Contributions

The current Plan incorporates funding for the construction of Lenore Drive, from the Erskine Park Road intersection to Ropes Creek which will facilitate the creation of a full link road to the Westlink M7.  Stage 1 (now completed) included 2.26 km of road upgrading from Erskine Park road to the Western boundary of lot 10, DP 253678 (Fitzpatrick’s holding) to an industrial road standard.  Stage 2 includes upgrading Lenore Drive from industrial to arterial road standard and its extension to Ropes Creek.

 

Although the costs of the future stages of the Lenore Drive upgrade have remained essentially the same, there has been an increase in the scope of works required for the upgrading of the Mamre Road / Erskine Park Road intersection.  This is mainly attributable to the RTA identifying additional works including providing for additional turning lanes as a result of the projected additional traffic movements which will eventuate as a result of the road link connection to the M7.

 

The contribution rates in the draft Plan have increased slightly for Catchment A but decreased slightly for Catchments B and C.  The new rates are listed in the summary tables in Part A of the draft Plan. 

Penrith DCP 2008

The EPEA DCP 2002 was re-exhibited as part of the new City-wide Penrith DCP 2006 in an unchanged format.  The DCP was adopted by Council on 21 August 2006 and came into force on the 15 December 2006.

 

A new city Development Control Plan (draft Penrith DCP 2008 – Stage 1) is currently being finalised and will be reported to Council shortly.

 

A range of development requirements for EBP common to other employment precincts will be included as general City-wide provisions in the new draft DCP 2008.  However, it is important some key issues specifically relating to the Erskine Business Park are addressed as a separate Key Precinct in the draft DCP.  The following principal changes are proposed:

 

1.  Biodiversity Conservation Corridor

 

It is proposed that a summary of key elements of the revised Biodiversity Strategy now endorsed be outlined in draft DCP 2008.  The draft DCP should also include key objectives and requirements for the Biodiversity Conservation areas and development interface.

 

2.  Drainage Works

 

Agreement was reached with the Department of Water and Energy (DWE) on the re-alignment of the creek on the Walker Corporation property (adjacent to Erskine Park Road) and the CSR Property (adjacent to the Jacfin property).  A regional drainage basin has been constructed at this western end of the estate and dedicated to Council as ‘drainage reserve’.  This drainage facility provides water quality and quantity control for the EBP western catchment. 

 

The drainage reserve is a key component of the EBP biodiversity corridor system and will be dedicated to DoP after Stage 1 of the Penrith Local Plan is gazetted. 

 

The high-level bypass channel north of Erskine Park Road is now no longer required.  This has allowed a finalisation of the biodiversity conservation corridor and development of the adjoining land.  A drainage basin at the eastern end of the estate is to be re-located further to the south, but clear of the biodiversity conservation corridor.  These changes will be included in the draft DCP.

 

3.  Access Roads

 

The Roads and Traffic Authority (RTA) will only permit one access to Mamre Road other than Erskine Park Road – being James Erskine Drive, which is now constructed.  This road traverses an existing Crown Road reserve, the remainder of which is intended to be set aside as part of the biodiversity conservation area.  Alternative access to the Jacfin land has been negotiated and accordingly, these changes should be indicated in the draft DCP.

 

4. Erskine Park Link Road Network

 

On 9 June 2006, the Minister for Planning gazetted the Erskine Park Link Road Network and declared it as a project to which Part 3A of the EP & A Act 1979 applies.  The State Government has prepared a Concept Plan for an Erskine Park Link Road Network which will cover the full road network for the Western Sydney Employment Hub (WSEH) including Erskine Business Park.  The State Government has also prepared an amendment to the Major Projects SEPP which will apply to the WSEH lands. 

 

It is understood that these two documents will be placed on public exhibition in the near future and we are awaiting advice from DoP as to the timing of that process.  Council has written to the Director-General of DoP and the Minister for Planning seeking to have these crucial planning processes advanced and we will continue to pursue this matter. 

 

We have reviewed the most appropriate alignment for the Lenore Drive section of the Link Road to enable the best connection to Old Walgove Road.  The amended alignment should be indicated in the draft DCP along with appropriate objective and development.

 

5. Building Setback Requirements

 

The minimum building setback requirements from Penrith DCP 2006 (EPEA) shall be maintained in the draft DCP 2008 for EBP, however an additional control of a minimum building setback of 10m for corner lots should be added.  This will ensure appropriate opportunities for landscaping and visual treatment to building facades.

 

8.  Urban Design

 

It is important to continue to seek quality building designs in the estate.  The urban design requirements have accordingly been revised to provide opportunities for more contemporary design solutions emphasising building facades fronting roads being designed carefully to reduce visual impact and promote quality architectural treatment.  Applicants will be expected to demonstrate how this can be effectively achieved.

 

Next Steps

 

With the completion of the draft Plan, the next step in bringing the draft Plan into effect is public exhibition of the document to enable community feedback on the draft Plan.  In accordance with the provisions of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act and Regulations, the draft Plan is required to be exhibited for a period of 28 days.  A public notice will be placed in local newspapers advising the community of the exhibition of the draft Plan and land owners within the area covered by the draft Plan will be advised by letter. 

 

Given the pending Christmas and New Year holiday break, the minimum 28 day public exhibition process will need to be extended to the end of January 2008. 

 

At the conclusion of the exhibition period public submissions will be reviewed by staff and a further report presented to Council identifying the need for any amendments to the plan before its final adoption and implementation. This report is likely to be presented to Council in February 2008.

Conclusion

The development of the Erskine Business Park is critical to the growth of employment opportunity in the city.  It is also a major contributor to Council’s strategic objectives in regard to providing local jobs for our workforce by growing local businesses.

 

The review of the Contributions Plan contemporises the approach required to be taken with the completion of the major drainage and roadworks facilities, and takes account of the rationalisation of the Biodiversity Strategy for the estate and the resultant increase in the developable area.  The net affect of the proposed changes is a marginal reduction in the overall cost of the Contributions Plan, and a reduction in the contribution rate per hectare across the estate as a result of the increase in the developable area. This will improve the commercial viability of the estate.

 

Advancement of the Erskine Business Park Development Contributions Plan 2007 will, when adopted, enable lodgement and processing of current and upcoming applications for development with greater certainty as to infrastructure funding requirements and will assist in clarifying development opportunities.  The draft Plan is therefore recommended for public exhibition.

 

The matters concerning those elements which need to be included in the draft Penrith DCP 2008 – Stage 1 have emerged from our review of the planning controls and seek to contemporise the development guidelines and clarify biodiversity conservation requirements.  A separate report will be presented to Council on the process required to advance the draft DCP 2008 – Stage 1.

 

 

RECOMMENDATION

That:

1.     The information contained in the report on Erskine Business Park - Amendment to  Section 94 Development Contributions Plan  be received

2.     Council place the Erskine Business Park draft Development Contributions Plan 2007, as attached to this report, on Public Exhibition in accordance with the provisions of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 (as amended) and Regulations 2000

3.     A further report be submitted to Council following exhibition and assessment of the submissions made during the exhibition of the Erskine Business Park draft Development Contributions Plan 2007.

 

ATTACHMENTS/APPENDICES

1. View

Erskine Business Park Developable Area

1 Page

Appendix

2.  

Erskine Business Park draft Development Contributions Plan 2007

38 Pages

Attachment

  


Policy Review Committee Meeting

19 November 2007

Appendix 1 - Erskine Business Park Developable Area

 

 

 

 


Policy Review Committee Meeting

19 November 2007

The City as a Social Place

 

 

The City as a Social Place

 

 

11

Smoke Free Outdoor Policy and Cancer Incidence Mapping   

 

Compiled by:                Monique Desmarchelier, Healthy People Partnership Officer

Authorised by:             Anthony Price, Acting Environmental Health Manager

Strategic Program Term Achievement: Strategies are in place to respond to the social and health needs of the community.

Critical Action: Develop and implement a healthy strategy for the City that will guide planning and strategies that embrace healthy outcomes.

     

Purpose:

To provide Council with additional information in relation to the Smoke Free Outdoor Policy. The report also includes further information on cancer incidence in the city, following the recent release of cancer maps by the NSW Cancer Council.

 

Background

In July 2007, a report was presented to Council requesting support for the Smoke Free Outdoor Areas Policy. The report identified current trends in smoking and related diseases and other plans by Sydney West Area Health Service and NSW Health to reduce rates of smoking. Council recently resolved to join the NSW Cancer Council Community Partnership program and as part of the partnership an information kit was provided. This kit provided details on a survey of NSW residents who supported smoking bans in children’s playgrounds and a summary of this was included in the report.

 

Other councils were reported to have introduced smoke free policies, including Western Sydney Councils Liverpool and Hawkesbury, with bans on smoking in playing fields and playgrounds. No councils, during these investigations, were enforcing these bans. All councils stated that the policies were more a way of educating the community.

 

The previous report recognises that the policy would need to be implemented over a period of time, as we have a very large number of parks and playgrounds and the cost would be prohibitive to warrant signs everywhere. Like other councils, the signs would be an educational tool rather than enforced. There were a number of initiatives that have occurred prior to the adoption of the policy and these were also highlighted in the previous report.

 

This report was adopted, and additional information was requested on how the policy would be implemented. This report will address those questions of implementation and mention some activities that will be undertaken as part of the policy. This report will also provide information about cancer rates which have subsequently been received from NSW Cancer Council.

Cancer maps

Recently, the NSW Cancer Council has produced Cancer Maps Report for New South Wales: 1998-2002. This report describes the incidence and mortality from cancer across NSW by Local Government Area. The report includes the incidence of 21 major cancers and all cancers combined, and maps of death rates for 11 cancers and all cancers combined. The report presents separate maps for males and females and individual cancer incidence and deaths. Among these are head and neck, stomach, colon, lung, melanoma, breast, ovarian and prostate. The report enables easy identification of Penrith LGA and how it compares with the rest of the state for the above.  

 

It is the first publication to systematically present cancer maps for NSW; however the authors state that caution must be applied when interpreting the data. In addition to lifestyle and environmental variables, many other factors contribute to variations in cancer patterns, such as screening activities, genetic factors and availability of treatment and this need to be considered when interpreting the cancer rates and deaths.

 

Of particular interest in this report were some areas of high rates of cancer within the city. Visual representation of the statistics below can be found in the attachments.

 

·        Penrith LGA has higher rates than NSW average of mortality for females for all cancers combined from 1998-2002

·        Penrith LGA has higher rates than the NSW average for incidence of lung cancer in females from 1998-2002

·        Penrith LGA has higher rates than the NSW average for mortality from lung cancer in females from 1998-2002

 

These statistics from NSW Cancer Council only reinforce the importance of Council continuing to implement policies that attempt to address these issues.

Council’s smoke free policy

In accordance with Councils adopted policy part of the implementation of Phase One will involve erecting signs in outdoor areas. The first of these will be children’s playgrounds. Phase Two will involve sporting fields. The implementation of Phase Two has not been planned and will be reported on following Phase One.

 

Penrith has 141 playgrounds so a number of criteria were reviewed in order to establish what playgrounds would be involved in the initial phase of implementation.

 

1)      Data was collected on suburbs with higher rates of children. There were a number of suburbs in the LGA that had higher average rates than NSW. These areas would have a higher playground usage than those with older people

2)      Other data was collected on suburbs with lower incomes as it is well established that those with economic disadvantage have more health concerns

3)      Other departments were contacted to see how they prioritise work conducted in parks of the area

4)      The Open Space Action Plan was reviewed for the number and size of recreational areas

·       District Parks that are greater than 5 ha and have universally designed playground equipment

·       Neighbourhood parks 3-5 ha in area with some playground equipment

·       Local Parks are .05 - 3ha in area with smaller playground area.

Where possible, district and neighbourhood parks were chosen.

5)      Usage: Patrons were observed at the playgrounds

6)      Proximity to playing fields

 

The parks chosen as priority sites were:

·       Cook Park - a local Park in St Marys /Colyton

·       Greygums oval (Neighbourhood) and Andromeda Park (Local) - in Cranebrook

·       Jamison Park - a district park in South Penrith Jamisontown

·       Surveyors Creek Reserve and Apple Gum reserve - two local parks in Glenmore Park

·       Peppertree Park - a Neighbourhood Park in St Clair Erskine Park

·       Parker St Reserve - a Neighbourhood park in Penrith

·       Chapman Gardens - a neighbourhood Park at Kingswood

·       Myrtle St Playground - in Claremont Meadows

 

The Tobacco Prevention Co-ordinator at the Sydney West Area Health Service (SWAHS) provided advice and assistance throughout the process of determining the parks.

 

Grant

Signs will be erected in the above parks using funds received from the SWAHS to the amount of $2000.00. This funding was received as part of 2007 World No Tobacco Day endorsed by World Health Organisation in which the theme was Smoke free environments. The aim of this initiative is to raise awareness of the lethal health consequences of tobacco use and exposure to second-hand smoke. NSW Health, through the Area Health Service supports this campaign by offering funds for events and projects. To implement Phase One, it is intended to match this amount raising the total to $4000.00.

 

Signs

The signs will be 400x300mm, black and red with the following words showing the Penrith Logo and a picture of a family: 

 

·        No smoking within 10m of this playground

·        Smoke free playgrounds- Protect our kids’ health

 

The cost of making the signs is $1534.50 (a copy of the signs design can be found in the attachments). The cost of putting up the signs would be $1600.00 for the 20 signs. These will be erected on existing poles where possible so as to maintain the current amenity of the area.  They would be erected at the two most obvious major entrances to each playground. The table below summarises the budget.

 

Activities

Overall Funding for Phase One

20 Signs installed

$3134.50

Promotions

$865.50

Total

$4000.00

 

 

 

Possible future funding

The NSW Cancer Council recently released details of a Local Government Community Partnership Grant Program to the maximum value of $2500.00. The five criteria for the grant are:

·        Council has adopted smoke free policy on playgrounds and sporting fields

·        Council has banned smoking in two other outdoor environments

·        Council matches the grant amount dollar for dollar

·        Council issues a press release

·        Clear benefits for the community are outlined in the proposal

 

If Council is successful in securing this grant funding, the following Parks will be added to the project:

·        Londonderry Park

·        Mulgoa Park

·        Werrington Creek Park in Werrington (District)

·        Dukes Oval in Emu Plains (Neighbourhood)

 

Additional parks will be considered in the future.

 

There will be more of an emphasis on media and promotions if the grant application to the NSW Cancer Council is successful. This may include paid articles in the local paper, website additions, development and distribution of information to Councils neighbourhood centres and pools. A local theatre company may also be interested in undertaking some street theatre in shopping strips to raise awareness within the community of the smoke free parks. A proposal for the NSW Cancer Council grant is being prepared and Council will be advised of the outcome.

Conclusion

Significant studies and programs undertaken by organisations such as the NSW Health, Sydney West Area Health Services and the NSW Cancer Council have highlighted the seriousness of cancer incidence rates, related diseases and the links to smoking and passive smoking.  This has lead to indoor smoking bans in NSW venues and an emphasis is now being placed by these organisations, Western Sydney Councils and the community to provide children in particular with safe and healthy play grounds and parks. This is the objective of Phase One of Council’s Smoke Free Outdoor Policy and erecting signs in the parks detailed in this report.

 

 

RECOMMENDATION

That the information contained in the report on Smoke Free Outdoor Policy and Cancer Incidence Mapping be received.

 

ATTACHMENTS/APPENDICES

1. View

Cancer Rate Charts

3 Pages

Appendix

2. View

Signs

1 Page

Appendix

  


Policy Review Committee Meeting

19 November 2007

Appendix 1 - Cancer Rate Charts

 

 

 



 


Policy Review Committee Meeting

19 November 2007

Appendix 2 - Signs

 

 

 

  


 

 

 

 

THIS PAGE HAS BEEN LEFT BLANK  INTENTIONALLY


The City In Its Environment

 

Item                                                                                                                                       Page

 

12      Penrith City Biodiversity Conservation 

 

 



Policy Review Committee Meeting

19 November 2007

The City in its Environment

 

 

The City in its Environment

 

 

12

Penrith City Biodiversity Conservation    

 

Compiled by:                Terry Agar, Planning Policy Unit Co-ordinator

Authorised by:             Ruth Goldsmith, Local Planning Manager  

Requested By:             Councillor David Bradbury

Strategic Program Term Achievement: The City’s biological diversity is being protected and conserved through the implementation of a biodiversity conservation and bushland management strategy.

Critical Action: Develop and implement contemporary planning controls to ensure biodiversity conservation and protection, and natural resource management.

     

Purpose:

To outline Council's efforts in protecting and managing the City's biodiversity assets.  The report recommends that Council's achievements in biodiversity conservation be received.

 

Introduction

Councillor Bradbury requested a report to Council detailing the following:

·        History of Council’s investigations into the preservation of biodiversity corridors across the City

·        Opportunities for enhancing such conservation efforts through the adoption of the new consolidated LEP, and

·        Opportunities for funding to enhance such conservation, including the consideration of the Growth Centres Commission fund.

Biodiversity Conservation in Penrith City

The coordinated protection and management of the City’s biodiversity assets has been actively pursued by Council since 1997, and a number of initiatives since that time have resulted in a more integrated conservation approach.  This report outlines the history of Council’s progress (including a focus on creating a network of conservation areas linked by corridors), the proposed land use controls in the new Local Plan and a future funding opportunity for protection and management.  The following is a brief summary of what has been achieved.

Flora and Fauna Corridors Study

The Flora and Fauna Corridors Study was commissioned by Council in 1997.  The Study comprehensively described the known biodiversity assets within the City.  It recommended the creation of a biodiversity corridor network through the City through the use of planning controls.  The network identified a number of large core conservation areas linked by corridors principally along the river and creeks.

Draft Flora and Fauna Conservation LEP

Council exhibited the draft Flora and Fauna Conservation Local Environmental Plan (LEP) in 1997.  It was based on the findings and recommendations of the Flora and Fauna Conservation Study and supplemented with ‘in-house’ aerial photo interpretation to improve the level of east-west corridor connectivity.  The draft LEP did not proceed to gazettal due to the impending review of the Rural Lands planning controls.

Rural Lands Strategy

The Rural Lands Strategy Study commenced in 2000, with the endorsement of the Strategy by Council in September 2003.  The network proposed in the draft Flora and Fauna Conservation LEP was incorporated into Council’s adopted Rural Lands Strategy.  A map of the adopted Rural Lands Strategy has been appended to this report.

Penrith Biodiversity Strategy

The Penrith Biodiversity Strategy formalised Council’s position on the protection and conservation of the City’s biodiversity.  The Strategy map is appended to this report.  The Strategy outlines the longer term objectives, and actions that should be undertaken to achieve them.  It was adopted by Council in 2003.

Biodiversity Database

The Biodiversity Database was developed in 2005 as a tool for recording and monitoring change in the City’s biodiversity.  It currently contains flora and fauna information for Council’s bushland reserves.

Draft Penrith Local Environmental Plan 2008

The mapped biodiversity network, shown in the Rural Lands Strategy, has been reviewed and incorporated into the draft Penrith Local Environmental Plan 2008 (Stage 1).  The proposed zones for the network are outlined in the next section of this report, and were informed by a Conservation Significance Assessment (CSA) which was completed during the analysis undertaken for the Biodiversity Database.

 

The draft Development Control Plan (DCP) provisions, to support and guide the implementation of the draft Penrith LEP 2008, are currently being finalised, and will be exhibited concurrently with the draft Penrith LEP 2008.

Dedications and Covenants

Over the years, Council has sought to create and enhance the biodiversity network through development application, rezoning and developer agreement processes.  There are now numerous achievements.  Successful development application process examples include an 18ha addition to Agnes Banks Nature Reserve, and the covenanting of a large bushland area in the Twin Creeks estate.  Successful rezoning and developer agreement process examples include the lobbying of the State Government for the Wianamatta Regional Park, and the biodiversity corridors through the Erskine Park Employment Area.  The release areas at WELL, Delfin Lend Lease’s St Marys site, and Glenmore Park Stage 2 all embody conservation and riparian corridors.

New Local Plan Opportunities

The Rural Lands Strategy identified and recommended a biodiversity network consisting of large habitat areas linked by corridors traversing the City.  This network was incorporated into draft Penrith Local Environmental Plan 2008 (Stage 1), which was endorsed by Council for public exhibition on 10 October 2007.  The draft Penrith LEP 2008 (Stage 1) is currently with the Department of Planning, awaiting approval to allow Council to place it on public exhibition.

 

The large habitat areas are zoned E1 National Parks and Nature Reserves, or E2 Environmental Conservation.  The biodiversity corridors linking them are predominantly zoned E2 Environmental Conservation along principle waterways and adjoining E1 zoned land.  These corridors are supplemented by ‘Environmentally Sensitive Land’ biodiversity areas (shown hatched on the map) with special provisions controlling certain works on the land.

 

The draft Penrith Local Environmental Plan 2008 (Stage 1) zoning controls will be supported by more detailed provisions in the draft Development Control Plan that is currently under preparation.  The draft DCP specifies the level of biodiversity impact assessment required to be undertaken for proposals within the E2 Environmental Conservation zone, the environmentally sensitive ‘hatched’ biodiversity corridors and other remnant native vegetation in rural zones.

 

The current biodiversity conservation network is principally limited to the rural lands and waterway corridors that pass through the urban areas.  A review of the biodiversity corridors, particularly through the urban areas of the City, will be undertaken as part of the review of the Residential Strategy.  This work would involve using previous flora and fauna assessments and conservation significance work to identify opportunities for a network in the urban areas.  It would also assess and identify the management regimes necessary to secure the corridor links to protect and conserve them.  Any identified corridors would be incorporated into the draft Penrith LEP (Stage 2).

Funding Opportunities

Federal Government

The Federal Government runs the National Reserve System program to purchase high quality areas of biodiversity habitat.  Areas of Cumberland Plain Woodland, which is listed as an endangered community under the Commonwealth Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act, would be eligible for purchase.  Funding is available to Council on a dollar for dollar basis.

 

Another Federal Government grant program for the community is managed by the Threatened Species Network (TSN).  The grants program was established to support and inspire communities to conduct on-ground work for the ongoing health of our natural environment, specifically targeting the needs of nationally threatened species and ecological communities.  Funding is provided for activities such as:

·           Habitat restoration

·           Weeding and feral animal control

·           Monitoring and surveying species populations

·           Fencing

·           Fire management.

 

Further examination of these programs, and their potential application within the City is to occur.

State Government

The State Government provides funding for projects from its Environmental Trust.  In 2006, Penrith Council secured a $2 million grant to implement the Ropes and South Creek Regional Open Space Strategic Management Plan over a three year period.  In partnership with Blacktown City Council, State Government agencies and the community, the project will restore and maintain biodiversity on a regional level on both creeks.

 

The Hawkesbury Nepean Catchment Management Authority has a local government partnership program which provides funding to Council led environmental projects which improve catchment health.  The Werrington Creek Restoration Project is currently funded through a grant from the program.

 

Council currently supports 10 active Bushcare and Landcare groups who have received funding from Federal and State sponsored environmental programs.  Council also secured, in 2006, $58,000 for the rehabilitation of a section of Jamison Creek.

Growth Centres

The State Government has made allowance for the purchase of areas of high conservation significance as part of its Growth Centres Commission policy.  It proposes to offset the impact of the Growth Centres by requiring infrastructure contributions for the purchase of land for conservation purposes within, and outside, the Growth Centres.  The loss of biodiversity lands within the Growth Centres is intended to be offset by a mixture of voluntary purchase of lands for formal reservation, and through the purchase and retirement of Biobanking credits of other permanent private land conservation measures.  An estimated $360 million (2005/2006 values) of infrastructure contributions is proposed to be spent on biodiversity land acquisition outside the Growth Centres.

 

Penrith City is an ideal candidate for the purchase of high quality biodiversity land outside the Growth Centres as it retains a large percentage of the remaining Cumberland Plain vegetation communities.

 

At present no infrastructure contributions have been paid, and consequently no funds are available for the purchase of land for conservation purposes outside the Growth Centres.  The State Government has, to date, indicated some unwillingness in forward funding this scheme.  Once again, as more details emerge about this system, consideration will be given to opportunities that present for the City.

Current Initiatives

A Biodiversity Working Group, facilitated by Council’s new Natural Resources Management Officer, has been established to implement Council’s adopted Biodiversity Strategy.  Building on the targeted directions of the adopted Strategy, a draft Biodiversity Action Plan with prioritised actions has now been developed.  The Biodiversity Working Group has also identified specific training needs for Council staff and awareness programs to engage individuals, organisations and community groups in the conservation of biodiversity.

Conclusion

The identification and implementation of a biodiversity conservation network throughout the City of Penrith has evolved considerably over the last 10 years.  The key achievements of Council to date are:

·           Preparation of the Flora and Fauna Corridors Study (1997)

·           Exhibition of the draft Flora and Fauna Conservation LEP (1997)

·           Adoption of the Rur