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RWIU 14 Apr 2008

In this Update: RWA Plans for North Eveleigh Redevelopment now Public / New Concept Planned for CUB Broadway Site – Greener and Bigger / New Planning Laws on Exhibition until 24th April 2008 / RWA Development Approvals – CarriageWorks Hours and NICTA Signs / The poor state of NSW Housing children’s playgrounds in Waterloo and Redfern / Inquiry into Overcoming Indigenous Disadvantage – New Submissions / Redfern Residents for Reconciliation Meeting - What the Indigenous Land Council (ILC) is doing in Redfern – 7.30 pm 16th April 2008 / Eveleigh Again Supports Maitland Steamfest – 19th April 2008 / Connect Redfern - Making Connections Term 2 Update – changes by 21st April 2008 / Indigenous Job Market 2008 – 9am – 2pm 20th May 2008 / Have your say – Summary of Current Consultations

 

[Please use the links below to go directly to items of interest to you. We do not expect you to be interested in everything!]

In this Update:

RWA Plans for North Eveleigh Redevelopment now Public

New Concept Planned for CUB Broadway Site – Greener and Bigger

New Planning Laws on Exhibition until 24th April 2008

RWA Development Approvals – CarriageWorks Hours and NICTA Signs

The poor state of NSW Housing children’s playgrounds in Waterloo and Redfern

Inquiry into Overcoming Indigenous Disadvantage – New Submissions

Redfern Residents for Reconciliation Meeting - What the Indigenous Land Council (ILC) is doing in Redfern – 7.30 pm 16th April 2008

Eveleigh Again Supports Maitland Steamfest – 19th April 2008

Connect Redfern - Making Connections Term 2 Update – changes by 21st April 2008

Indigenous Job Market 2008 – 9am – 2pm 20th May 2008

Have your say – Summary of Current Consultations

Coming Events (look at the new local events entered on the REDWatch website that are not covered here)

RWA Plans for North Eveleigh Redevelopment now Public

The RWA’s “North Eveleigh Concept Plan Part 3A Major Project Application Preliminary Environmental Assessment” (Preliminary assessment 3.4 MB PDF Text) and the Director-General's requirements for Environmental Assessment (DGRs) (785 KB PDF Scan) have been posted on the Department of Planning’s Register of major projects - Metropolitan Area as Major Project MP 08_0015. The map of the RWA’s proposal in the Preliminary Assessment is low resolution and is difficult to read. We have requested and received from the RWA a higher resolution version of the Maps of Preliminary Proposed Development for North Eveleigh (The file is big at 4.7MB PDF). The high resolution RWA map is the only place that heights of specific proposed buildings can be identified. The maps are on the REDWatch website North Eveleigh Major Project Application by RWA 2008 along with an OCR overlay version of the DGRs for those who wish to extract DGRs’ text for submissions etc. [As usual check all OCR text for any OCR errors if you are using this text].

The Minister for Planning declared the proposal to be a major project under Part 3A of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 and authorised a Concept Plan to be submitted on March 13 2008. The Director-General’s Requirements were issued on 17th March 2008 and project was added to the Department of Planning’s website public register on 7th April 2008. The RWA Preliminary Environmental Assessment dated January 2008 also includes a “Preliminary Heritage Assessment North Eveleigh Concept Plan for Redfern Waterloo Authority by Weir + Phillips December 2007”. Between the production of the Preliminary Heritage Assessment and the submission Preliminary Environmental Assessment there were some changes in the project which were not reflected in the Preliminary Heritage Assessment description of the Project. The RWA has provided us with an updated summary of the project which matches the Preliminary Environmental Assessment maps. In brief the RWA have proposed:

"The site is divided into distinct areas for the purpose of a more detailed explanation of the design. The Carriage Workshop and Blacksmiths' Shop buildings are located is the centre of the site and form the central precinct separating the eastern and western sites.

Generally the western end of the site is proposed to include residential uses, the Central area is proposed to include cultural and commercial uses and the eastern end is proposed to include residential, commercial, retail and cultural/community uses. Associated open space and roads to service the development and provide access to the site for neighbouring properties will also be included. A more detailed description of each area is below:

The Eastern Precinct: The Eastern precinct will be a mixed use area and will include:

  • The adaptive reuse of the significant Chief Mechanical Engineer's Office, Scientific Services Building No.1 and Telecommunications Equipment Centre.
  • The adaptive reuse of the Paint Shop for retail and commercial uses, and alterations to include a residential component.
  • The construction of seven commercial buildings east of the Paint Shop.
  • The construction of a residential tower adjacent to Redfern Station.
  • The construction of six new residential buildings generally north of the Paint Shop (towards Wilson Street).

The Western Precinct: The Western precinct will be a residential area and will include:

  • The adaptive reuse of the Clothing Store for residential purposes.
  • Construction of seven new residential blocks.

The Central Precinct: The existing buildings are proposed to remain and no additional building elements are proposed in the centre of the site. However, additional floor space is proposed in the Carriage Workshop and Blacksmiths' buildings."

On the plans the building used by Yaama Dhiyaan is to be replaced by a residential building. The RWA have advised that there is no intention to replace Yaama Dhiyaan with a residential building for the foreseeable future and the land on which Yaama sits will not be put to market when the rest of the site is put up for sale with an approved concept plan later this year.

The concept plan proposes development of 185,221 sq meters of floor space for the entire 107,991sm site with about 15% of the site being publically accessible open space. A new entrance to the site is proposed from Shepherd Street in addition to the existing entrance near Queen Street and Iverys Lane. Building heights in the Eastern Precinct range from the 16 storey iconic residential tower near Redfern Station through six 8 storey and one 5 story commercial buildings, to 4 and 5 storey residential buildings next to CarriageWorks and 4 storey residential next to existing residential areas. In the Western Precinct the site’s residential buildings include 12, 5 and 8 storeys nearest the railway line to 4 storeys closer to Wilson Street. The RWA proposal does not create a wall of buildings along the railway line and seeks to maintain North South vistas across the site especially from access streets in Darlington. One implication of this approach is that residents backing on to Iverys Lane towards the railway line will look east onto 6 and 12 storey buildings albeit at some distance from their back yards but will retain vistas to the South.

The RWA is also proposing to increase the amount of floor space that can be developed in the central area of the site for the CarriageWorks (an additional 12,000sm) and for the Blacksmith’s shop (an extra 2,120sm). The central area was given the lowest FSR in the RWA’s Built Environment Plan of 1:1. This is now seen as being too low for the CarriageWorks which was set up to support their performance space with commercial activity on the balance of the site. The increase in floor space for the Blacksmith shop will allow for a second floor. The FSR on the central area is proposed to increased to 1.3:1 however even with this increase the total Floor Space across the entire North Eveleigh site will remain within the total of the Floor Space allowed in the RWA’s Built Environment Plan. The RWA will request the Minister use his power to allow developments greater than the RWA’s planning controls for the increased FSR in the central area and also to allow some of buildings on the site to have an average height rather than the mix allowed in the RWA’s Built Environment Plan and the SEPP.

While the proposal contains car space maximums for residential and other sites there is nothing specific about how this will be handled for the Central Precinct which is already under pressure without the commercial aspects operating. The RWA may do well to look at Frasers Broadway proposal where parking is proposed to be independently managed across the site rather than sold off with residential units and commercial floor space. Such an approach is likely to provide an optimum solution for managing parking within a mixed use site with a significant entertainment component.

The Preliminary Environmental Assessment and the DGRs detail the numerous reports the RWA will submit in the final proposal. The RWA have made a commitment to Environmental Sustainable Development principles in design and construction but there are no indications that the RWA will use the opportunity to push for the high green star development that should be possible on such site. The services section deals with the ability of the surrounding services to support the new development rather than exploring the opportunity for tri-generation and provision for green infrastructure on the site such as that which is being taken up for the Frasers Broadway site. The DGRs do request the RWA to explore “onsite recycling of grey water, rainwater and stormwater harvesting”. The conflict here could be that if the RWA push up environmental requirements for the site to respond to the need for increasingly greener developments that this could result in less money to the RWA and the state government from the sale of the land with an approved concept plan that requires high investment by a potential developer in a greener development.

The North Eveleigh site is an important heritage site and a number of buildings will be removed or adaptively reused. In the case of the Paint Shop this means having a new 4 and 5 storey building proposed to be built within it. Those with a heritage interest should read the Preliminary Heritage Assessment to acquaint themselves with the buildings affected and the reasons given for the heritage consultant’s recommendations. It will be important for all heritage issues to be adequately covered in the concept plan as this will govern what the purchaser(s) of the site will have to do to preserve and interpret the sites railway heritage. The Heritage aspect is especially important because of the powers of the Minister to alter and demolish items on the State Heritage Register. RWA’s Preliminary Application states:

“The Eveleigh Railway Yards is listed on the State Heritage Register. Under the Redfern – Waterloo Authority Act the Heritage Act does not apply to development under Part 4 of the EP&A Act and for which the Minister is the consent authority or development under Part 3A. Under Clause 29(2) of the Redfern-Waterloo Authority Act an item listed on the State Heritage Register cannot be altered or demolished unless the Minister has consulted with the Heritage Council and taken into consideration any advice received, and the Minister is satisfied that the alteration/demolition is necessary for the sustainable improvement of the operational area”.

The RWA are now putting the finishing touches to their Concept Plan which will include the reports called for in the Director Generals Requirements. After the proposal is assessed for adequacy by the Department of Planning the final proposal will be placed on public exhibition. The Environmental Assessment outlines the further consultation which RWA will undertake during the public exhibition of the proposal. The RWA has committed to undertaking additional consultation - such as weekly information sessions during the public exhibition to allow people to ask questions and view material such as the Environmental Assessment, a model of the proposal and presentation panels of the project. They have also committed to one to one meetings with key stakeholders, and meetings with community and resident groups as requested.  Also RWA will be distributing a newsletter and will place the EA and relevant material on the RWA website.

The DGR’s for North Eveleigh require consultation to be undertaken in accordance with Guidelines for Major Project Community Consultation (873 KB PDF). We note that the new community consultation guidelines encourage community and stakeholder consultation prior to lodgement which has not happened on this project. The design competition and plan preparation has been undertaken behind closed doors and those on the RWA’s Built Environment Ministerial Advisory Committee where not consulted on the proposal. This is the first opportunity the community has had to view what the RWA is proposing for our community.

New Concept Planned for CUB Broadway Site – Greener and Bigger

As reported in our 17th March 2008 RWIU Frasers have been working on new proposals for the former CUB now Fraser Broadway site. Resident groups including REDWatch have been urging Frasers to revisit the approved concept plan to find a better solution for the site. On 8th April 2008, Frasers announced to the media in the presence of Minister Frank Sartor that they will submit changes to the approved concept plan within the next week or two. The Media statement and background material from Frasers can be found in Frasers Property's vision for 6 green star urban quarter on Broadway as can the Minister’s media statement Minister Reviews Revised CUB Proposal. Media coverage of the announcement included World's biggest home brew - and room for 13,000 at the inn (SMH), Green precinct plan for Sydney brewery (AAP). Responses to the new proposals included an initial response from the Coalition Chippendale Community Groups in “Green and Mega Big” - Former CUB site - Amended Plans and comments from Councillor John McInerney in Councillor criticises brewery redevelopment plan (ABC).

Frasers are proposing Australia’s first six star green precinct. To achieve this they are incorporating a range of green measures such as tri-generation which produces electricity on site and uses the power production to provide both heating and cooling for building throughout the site. Water harvesting both from rain water and sewerage are parts of the environmental package which will even see the site export some services to the surrounding community (a brief video of these initiatives can be found on the SMH website (after an add) at http://media.smh.com.au/?rid=36964&category=National%20News and an explanation from the Frasers media kit at Tri-generation- How does it work?).

The new concept plan removes the road defined grid pattern in the original concept plan. Most vehicles will enter an underground car park close to the boundary of the site and the public domain will be primarily activated by people using the site rather than cars. The number of car spaces are reduced from 2,300 to 2000 with the car parking to be handled by a separate company rather than parking spots sold off with units or commercial space. This allows for the parking spaces to be managed handling both day time commercial requirements, as well as resident and entertainment uses. The future proofing also extends to making provision for charging for electronic cars and car share places.

Frasers concept plan has also increased the publically accessible space on the site by 33%. They have defined a new square by removing one of the proposed building to the north of the new park and redistributing floor space around the site. This new square includes the park and the old brewery yard and allocates the floor space from the missing building primarily to the commercial development on the corner of Abercrombie Street and Broadway. Some new pocket parks will also be added. Commercial space on the site will raise from 40% to 50% with a corresponding change in residential space under the amended proposal.

Frasers have purchased the balance properties in Kensington Street and are proposing to turn this area into an ‘edgy” entertainment precinct. Owning all properties on Kensington Street will make it possible to propose closing the street and creating a pedestrian precinct. Frasers have appointed some leading architects to create designs for the site including for the tower which will stand opposite the UTS tower which is evocative for some of the Hanging Gardens of Babylon.

Many changes in the concept plan were made in response to issues raised by residents with Frasers over the last few months. The Green Star credentials and the increase public space have been widely welcomed by residents. Residents have continually raised their concerns about the density of the site in their meetings with Frasers. Frasers have continually reminded residents that the price they have paid for the sight is for a certain level of floor space on the site as set out in the earlier concept plan and that it is not financially viable for them to reduce floor space.

Given resident representations on the need to try and reduce the density, residents were stunned to lean after the Frasers announcement, that the new Concept Plan also included the provision for a 6% increase in floor space over what had been previously approved. Frasers told resident representatives, after the announcement, that this increase may not be all used but that they need it to cover some of their increased costs for the development.

When the proposal goes on exhibition in a couple of months, the community in their submissions and ultimately the Department of Planning and its Minister will need to decide if the increased density proposed for the site is an acceptable price to pay for the improvements proposed in Frasers amended concept plan for the Broadway site.

New Planning Laws on Exhibition until 24th April 2008

Keeping to the Planning theme on this update, you may have seen some discussion in the media such as the SMH article Warning: Sartors new laws invite graft  about a new round of changes to the states planning legislation. Details of the proposed changes can be found at www.planning.nsw.gov.au/planning_reforms/index.asp. The Local Government and Shires Associations of NSW came out strongly against the proposal and is running a community campaign against the proposed changes – for further information on the campaign see their website www.keepitlocal.org.au . Below we have reproduced a piece on the proposed new laws from Clover’s enews of Friday 11 April 2008.

The NSW Government has allowed only three weeks for public comment on two draft exposure Bills which, if adopted, will dramatically change the planning system in NSW for the worse. Released last Thursday, submissions on the two bills, totalling 170 pages of new legislation, close on Thursday 24 April.

The two Bills, the Environmental Planning and Assessment Amendment Bill 2008 and the Building Professionals Amendment Bill 2008 will further exclude communities from developments which impact on their homes and neighbourhoods, counter to the spirit and  aim of the original Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979.

The most dramatic change in the proposed legislation will take many development approvals out of the hands of democratically elected councils and hand them to planning panels or private certifiers.

The Environmental Planning and Assessment Amendment Bill 2008 proposes the establishment of a Planning Assessment Commission, with all members appointed by the Minister. The Commission will be responsible for determining applications for Part 3A projects and concept plans delegated to it by the Minister.

The Minister will also appoint three members to proposed new Joint Regional Planning Panels, which may be set up to make planning and development decisions for particular areas. Local councils will appoint two members. The Bill also provides for local Independent Hearing and Assessment Panels and a Planning Arbitrators Register, with the Minister approving all register listings.

There is widespread concern that these panels will significantly reduce accountability, increase the risk of corruption, create additional red tape and layers of bureaucracy and increase costs for Councils.

The new legislation will also expand the role of private certifiers, enabling them to effectively approve a wide range of developments, such as home renovations and extensions.  The City and other Councils have experienced serious problems with private certification.

Other changes being proposed in the draft legislation include:

  • New definitions of community infrastructure and public infrastructure for the purpose of collecting developer contributions; and
  • Changes to the appeal processes, with panels and planning arbitrators being able to review DA decisions.

The City is preparing a submission on the draft legislation and I encourage you to do the same.

RWA Development Approvals – CarriageWorks Hours and NICTA Signs

The Redfern Waterloo Authority has posted two new Notices of Determination on their website. One is for the continued current hours of operation and delivery times at CarriageWorks. The CarriageWorks approval continues existing arrangements for a further 5 years with the Plan of Management to be reviewed with Redfern-Waterloo Authority, Arts NSW and CarriageWorks centre management every 12 months for 4 years to address changing usage patterns and local residents' concerns.

The second approval is for the installation of two (2) illuminated business identification signs to the south-east and south-west building facades of the ATP’s NICTA building.

The poor state of NSW Housing children’s playgrounds in Waterloo and Redfern

On 10th April Waterloo Tenants met with some department and agency representatives to set up a mechanism to take up non housing issues that affected public and private tenants alike in the area. When Geoff returned from the meeting there was an email from a resident to politicians and the media about the state of Housing NSW Children’s playgrounds. We thought it worth passing on to highlight the kind of issues that need to be tackled for all who live in the area. We have put the photo’s referred to below in Housing NSW Playgrounds (1 MB PDF) on the REDWatch website.

“I am a resident of Redfern and when the Redfern Park children’s playground disappeared in early 2007 due to a ‘refurbishment’ I had to hunt for a new one for my 2 now 3 year old in my neighbourhood and was very disappointed to find the closest ones, the Housing NSW playgrounds, in such a shocking state of disrepair.

Over the past year I have realised that most of the Housing NSW playgrounds in my area are in the same state, that is unsafe and mostly unusable, please see photographs of playgrounds near ‘Lawson’, Morehead St, Redfern, ‘James Cook’, Pitt St, Waterloo and ‘Marton’, Cope St, Waterloo. I understand now why the playground in Redfern Park was so intensively used.

I wrote a letter last year to the Housing NSW office in 232 Pitt St Waterloo to let them know that the playground next to the ‘Marton’ Building in Waterloo was unsafe and had a reply that it was being ‘looked into’ but nothing has been done.

So I thought the best way would be to send images to people to show what the children in the apartments in the public housing estates of Redfern and Waterloo are missing out on and so that this equipment can be made safe and maintained.”

Inquiry into Overcoming Indigenous Disadvantage – New Submissions

The Inquiry has added a number of new submissions to its website. We found the ISRCSD submission (number 68) which looks at service delivery issues of special interest as many of the issues raised about service delivery are also applicable more broadly to service delivery in Redfern Waterloo. The Inquiry is still taking submissions with the current deadline being the end of April 2008. The new submissions are:

Redfern Residents for Reconciliation Meeting - What the Indigenous Land Council (ILC) is doing in Redfern – 7.30 pm 16th April 2008

Redfern Residents for Reconciliation is providing an opportunity to come and hear about what the ILC is doing in Redfern. The RRR meeting will be held at Redfern Community Centre on Wednesday 7.30 pm Wednesday 16th April 2008. For more information contact Lyn Turnbull - turnbullfamily@stassen.com.au.

Eveleigh Again Supports Maitland Steamfest – 19th April 2008

Once again it is time to go to Maitland for the Steamfest Festival. Join Old Mateland Steamfest Flyer on Saturday, 19th April 2006 as it travels the scenic main north line across Hawkesbury River, along Mullet Creek and the Brisbane Waters, through the suburbs of Newcastle and on to Maitland, arriving in time for lunch. For 21 years it has been a tradition to supply this service for the people of Sydney and for the benefit of tourism in the Hunter. As was the case last year this will be the only scheduled heritage train service running from Sydney Terminal. The Old Mateland Steamfest Flyer is a special charter with a heritage diesel locomotive pulling heritage carriages. For full details see Old Mateland Charter - Sydney to Maitland for Steamfest (33 KB PDF)

Connect Redfern - Making Connections Term 2 Update – changes by 21st April 2008

Jo Fletcher from Connect Redfern Schools as Community Centres Program will be updating the Making Connections brochure for Term 2 during the school holidays. If you have any changes, additions or fliers you would like included in the brochure please contact Jo connectredfern@yahoo.com.au NO LATER THAN MONDAY APRIL 21. You can find Connect Redfern listings and other tools to find local services on the REDWatch site under Find a Local Community Service.

Indigenous Job Market 2008 – 9am – 2pm 20th May 2008

The Indigenous Job Market is the best place to meet potential employers from business and the government. It also provides an opportunity to meet and talk to Job Network members, TAFE, Universities and Group Training. The Indigenous Job Market this year is being held at Kevin Betts Stadium, Ralph Place, Mt Druitt. For information about being involved contact Cathy Craigie at GROW Sydney ACC on 02 9890 7804 | 0419 223 563 or email cathy.craigie@grow.org.au

Have your say – Summary of Current Consultations

Below we have listed consultations currently open for community input and provided a link for further information: 

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