160 community & environment groups across Melbourne have formed a coalition to protect Melbourne's green wedges. We regard maintaining the green wedges for future generations as a yardstick for our generation's commitment to developing a sustainable city in a sustainable world.

GWC Bulletin No 2 - March 2018

Author: 
Friends of the Glenfern Green Wedges

Green Wedges Coalition - a vision for Melbourne

Bulletin No 2 – 20 March 2018

This is an occasional publication to highlight issues of major importance to the future of the Green Wedges and is also posted on the organisation’s website at www.gwc.org.au

Update by Friends of the Glenfern Green Wedge

15/03/2018
Subject: 

GWC Bulletin No 1 - 20 Feb 2018

Author: 
Green Wedges Coalition

Green Wedges Coalition - a vision for Melbourne

Bulletin No 1 – 20 February 2018

This is an occasional publication to highlight issues of major importance to the future of the Green Wedges and is also posted on the organisation’s website at www.gwc.org.au

 

PLACES OF WORSHIP – BULK AND SCALE A THREAT TO GREEN WEDGES

20/02/2018

Green Wedges Coalition Advocacy Watchlist 2018

Author: 
Green Wedges Coalition

Purpose

The purpose of this document is to provide a resource document that identifies the specific issues of concern to the Green Wedges Coalition and its partner organisations across all the Green Wedges.

The advocacy themes are divided into:

  • State Government Programs

The main programs of immediate concern at present are the Smart Planning Program and the Sustainable Animals Industries initiative. These two programs have the potential to destroy the rural values of the Green Wedges.

12/02/2018
Subject: 

Submission to the State Government Discussion Paper: Reforming the Victoria Planning Provisions

Author: 
Green Wedges Coalition

The future of the Green Wedges is vital to the quality of life and the reputation of Melbourne as one of the world’s most liveable cities.

Yet the Green Wedges are in danger of disappearing from both the ongoing encroachment of urban development and more insidiously a gradual increase in built development under uses permissible under existing non-urban zones.  These uses and these threats will be exacerbated by the line-by-line program of deregulation advanced in this discussion paper, which could lead to ‘death by a thousand cuts’ for the Green Wedges. .

Wednesday, 31 January, 2018

Unsustainable Intensive Animal Production

Author: 
Christine Pruneau

This is a keynote address prepsented at the Green Wedges Coalition AGM on 7 December 2017 and a copy is attached as a pdf.

07/12/2017

Green Wedges to be protected and refreshed in latest Metropolitan Planning Strategy

Author: 
Green Wedge Coalition

The good news in Minister Wynne’s new Plan Melbourne Refresh is that Melbourne’s Green Wedges are safe, behind the locked-down Urban Growth Boundary that was an election pledge of the Andrews Government.

More good news is that the new plan builds on and provides much-needed detail to former Minister Guy’s original 2014 Plan Melbourne, which also committed to a permanent Urban Growth Boundary.

Let’s hope this heralds more collaborative planning and ends the practice by new governments of throwing out old, often sound policies and bringing in more development-oriented ones. Effective planning requires consistency, commitment and long-term vision.

We still need the Government to review and tighten controls on inappropriate develop-ments allowed in by the last Government’s deregulation of green wedge zones, especially the Rural Conservation Zone. Minister Wynne told us he would review the Green Wedge and Rural zones after he had reviewed the residential zones. We hope this will now be soon.

In the meantime we are battling applications like:

  • A “cleanfill” application at Oaklands Junction, where a developer wants to cover good farmland and environmentally significant grassland with up 600,000 tonnes of perfectly good soil generated by wasteful development practices;
  • Various communities applying  to set up large urban-style  residential and community developments: (a 3000-seat centre in Carrum Downs, a church in Lyndhurst with 23 metre towers and footprint twice the size of St Paul’s Cathedral,  a mosque in Narre Warren North; a brewery, a private school carpark  and restaurants with double the maximum number of patrons on  Mornington Peninsula.

Our members are also striving to save endangered species and significant landscapes on former green wedge land rezoned by former Labor and Liberal governments  in 2010 and 2012, for instance the Jacksons Creek Valley near Emu Bottom in Sunbury, Growling Grass Frogs in Merri Creek and Southern Brown Bandicoot habitat in  South East Growth corridor. 

Please attribute these comments to Kahn Franke, president of the Green Wedge Protection Group  and the Green Wedges Coalition, 0456 701 663, Rosemary West,  Green Wedges Coordinator rowest@ozemail.com.au;   0418 554 799,   or Alan Thatcher, GWC secretary, 0417 387 678 alancthatcher@gmail.com;   To contact  delegates from other Green Wedges, see attached constituent membership list. 

Background:

  1. Sunbury Residents Association is battling to protect the Jacksons Creek Valley

 from encroaching suburban development around Victoria’s oldest homestead, Emu Bottom;  Contact Trevor Dance, tdtd@ozemail.com.au0413822214  for more information see: https://www.change.org/p/victorian-government-save-jacksons-creek-valley sunbury?recruiter=149425465&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=share_email_responsive

2.The need to protect the Rural Conservation Zone (RCZ):

We have particular concern about the undermining of the Rural Conservation Zone,

which covers much of the Green Wedges as well as rural land around the water catchments, high fire risk areas and most privately-owned environmentally significant land.  

As part of their deregulation of the planning scheme to promote an anything goes approach, the previous government  removed the “in conjunction”  requirement and minimum lot sizes from the RCZ for tourist and other uses and allowed schools, trash and treasure markets and ‘innominate uses’ (ie uses not named in the planning scheme) to be approved by Council permits, where previously they were prohibited.  We are disturbed that this is likely to mean:

  • diminished concern for environmental conservation ( a primary purpose for Green Wedges);
  • diminished protection for our drinking water catchments and conservation areas in the new urban growth areas and in the rural areas;
  • diminished concern for increasing fire risk and the need for rural buffers;
  • diminished concern for  the substantial amount of agriculture in the RCZ in, for example, Nillumbik & Manningham Green Wedges, as well as Frankston and Casey

The Rural Conservation Zone as it stands is apparently to be opened up to all manner of urban development,   allowing restaurants, residential hotels, group accommodation, rural store and motels on lots of any size outside the Green Wedges, without requiring any associated farming, wineries or other green wedge uses.  We have pointed out the need to balance tourist facilities with conservation of the environmental assets that attract tourists to these areas. Why would tourists want to go bush for the weekend or to a restaurant in the country for Sunday lunch or to pick up their native plants if there is a quarry or crematorium next door not to mention mining service stations and trash & treasure markets?  There is a lot of grazing and other farming in the RCZ, and as we know, farmers see this kind of urban development as a blight that impacts on their work practices and hours and will terrify the livestock as much as the tourists. 

Unacceptable new development uses arising from RCZ change from prohibited to ‘permit required’ for innominate uses: 

Cemetery, Crematorium; Cartage contractor’s depot; Saleyard; Veterinary Clinic

Display home (prohibited in Green Wedges under Cl 57)

Freeway Service Centre/ Service Station (both prohibited in Green Wedges under Cl 57.)

Funeral Parlour (prohibited in Green Wedges under Cl 57)

Hospital (prohibited in Green Wedges under Cl 57)

Research Centre (no conditions, except in Cl 57; cf GWZ & GWAZ require min. lot size)

Many other uses previously not allowed in the zone.

 

Uses where “in conjunction” ruling has been removed in RCZ (except in Green Wedges by Clause 57):

Restaurants; Residential hotels; Group accommodation

 

Uses changed from prohibited to permit required

Primary & secondary school

Trash and Treasure Market

Animal boarding. 

13/03/2017

Big dip for theme park

Author: 
Dandenong Journal

Attached is an article from the Dandenong Journal 23 January 2017 entiled 'Big dip for the theme park'. This concerns a planning application for a Chinese theme park in the City of Greater Dandenong Green Wedge. 

23/01/2017

Church to 'spoil' Green Wedge

A copy of an story published by the Greater Dandenong Leader newspaper on 16 January 2017 on page 8 entitled "Church to 'spoil' Green Wedge' is attached. 

16/01/2017

Yarra Ranges Shire proposed planning scheme amendment C148

Author: 
Green Wedge Coalition

The Green Wedge Coalition sees one of the major threats to the future of the Green Wedges as being a ‘death by a thousand cuts’. This refers to increasing evidence of planning applications that seek to enable uses that tip the balance from an open rural landscape to an urban built environment.

Each individual planning application may seem relatively innocuous but the cumulative impact of many similar planning decisions over time will see the loss of the Green Wedges.

Thursday, 1 December, 2016

City of Greater Dandenong C143 Implementation of the Greater Dandenong Green Wedge Management Plan

Author: 
Defenders of the South East Green Wedge

In late October Planning Panels Victoria held a planning hearing to address the proposed Greater Dandenong Planning Scheme Amendment C143: South East Green Wedge Management Plan 2014.

Wednesday, 2 November, 2016

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