All Green Wedges

Green Wedges proposed planning scheme amendments - May update

Alan Thatcher
Green Wedges: 

Attached is the May update for proposed planning scheme amendments in the Green Wedge municipalities.

Those proposed amendments that relate directly to the Green Wedge zones are shaded in light blue.

Please note C100 for the Frankston City Planning Scheme is for a review of the planning scheme and offers the opportunity for GWC members to have their say about the future direction for land use and development in the municipality.

Green Wedges proposed planning scheme amendments

Alan Thatcher
Green Wedges: 

Proposed planning scheme amendments


The purpose of this listing of proposed planning scheme amendments (attached as a pdf file) is to alert your groups to any proposed land use changes in your municipal planning scheme that may be of concern to your organisation for the future of the Green Wedges.. And assist in pointing your organisation to the appropriate sources of information and most importantly timelines. Please forward this information to any groups as you think appropriate.


Future directions - GWC website update March 2016

Alan Thatcher
Green Wedges: 

Louis Delacretaz has done an excellent job redesigning the  new look Green Wedge Coalition website. 

I have attached my first 'Future directions website update. This is the same document that was circulated to you earlier by Rosemary West in a request for information on activities from member groups.

The purpose of this document is three fold, to identify:

1. Overall priority issues

Plan Melbourne Discussion Paper (2015)

Green Wedge Coalition

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

Yet the Green Wedges are in danger of disappearing from both the ongoing encroachment ofurban development and more insidiously a gradual increase in built development under uses permissible under existing nonurban zoning. These could lead to ‘death by a thousand cuts’.

Saturday, 12 September, 2015


At our recent electoral forum on planning policies for Green Wedges, the ALP and Greens Planning Spokespersons Brian Tee and Greg Barber both provided strong commitments to protect Melbourne’s Green Wedges by opposing any further expansion of the Urban Growth Boundary(UGB).  The Planning Minister Matthew Guy has matched that commitment, though he declined our invitation to address our forum (which we combined with the AGM), after initially agreeing to attend. 

This marks a big improvement on the 2010 election, when Green Wedge supporters were reeling from the rezoning of 43,000 ha of Green Wedge land for urban growth in 2010 and bracing ourselves for a new round of rezonings in the Coalition Government’s election policy  This led to another 6000 ha of excisions from the Green Wedges, including some owned by Liberal Party donors and to a review of the rural zones which allowed a number of urban uses including schools and hotels into the Green Wedges. We support the protection of agriculture but making agriculture as-of-right and undermining the Native Vegetation controls will mean more clearing of which we won’t even be notified. Mr Tee says a Labor Government would again review the zones with a view to tightening controls on urban uses in the Green Wedges. 

We are now back to bipartisan support for Green Wedges, for the first time since 2008. An important milestone:  we hope the losses of the past five years have been stemmed.

The Green Wedges are however, still under threat, though we have been quieter than in the turbulent days of the "logical inclusions", "anomalies" and the rural zones review.  The threats this year are not as direct as they were before the 2010 election, but still there.

The main threat now is uncertainty.  Plan Melbourne provides for a permanent urban boundary, but the Metropolitan Planning Authority is responsible for implementation, with input from Councils. Minister Guy says this does not herald a new round of rezoning bids and we certainly hope he is right.


Apart from this, the main threats to the Green Wedges now consist of:

* A weakened Rural Conservation Zone as a result of the Rural Zones Review 

*  Decisions by Kingston Council to rezone or pave the way for subdivision of their Green Wedge land that could inspire developers and their friends in other Councils to do the same, unless the Minister promptly and firmly says no.  He has said he would fix these issues but has not done so. (see Defenders of the S-E Green Wedge bulletin (below)).


These comments may be attributed to Rosemary West, joint coordinator of the Green Wedges Coalition, 0418 554 799; For comment,  call Kahn Franke, President, GWC (Nillumbik) 0456 701 663 or for Kingston issues, Barry Ross, secretary, Defenders of the South East Green Wedge,9598 6266.


Matthew Guy is proposing planning changes that would “urbanise” ​​our precious green wedges by allowing schools, medical centres, service stations, hotels, shops and other suburban facilities to be built anywhere across the countryside.


He is also proposing new residential zones will allow shops, offices, medical centres and churches to be established without a planning permit in many residential streets. The new commercial zones setup a retailing and commercial free-for-all. Much of Melbourne will have little protection against piecemeal development. Our historic strip shopping centres will be demolished or distorted to facades in front of medium and high-rise development.

All this would be a disaster. It is completely unacceptable to communities in and around the city. We will all join to deliver that message loud and clear to the Baillieu Government on Thursday 29 November.

We ask you to join us to defend Melbourne and its Green Wedges –-- for you, and for your children and grandchildren.

Planning Minister Guy’s proposals are “a ‘hit job’ on Green Wedges, according to RMIT University Planning Professor Michael Buxton. They would give developers carte blanche to build across the peninsula’s beautiful open farmland and the environmental and agricultural treasures and landscapes of all the green wedges.That means we would lose it forever.


For more information, please see Green Wedges Coalition submission, one of 2000 received by Government despite a brief ten week period for submissions and virtually no community consultation, except by alert councils at Manningham and Mornington Peninsula. 

Mornington Peninsula groups are hiring buses to get supporters to the rally and home again. The aim is to get to the city mid-morning so you can shop, meet friends &c then attend the rally at 1pm. Details of route, times and prices are being worked out. If you are interested in the bus option, please contact Peter Hall (Flinders Community Association) (5989 0140) or David Harrison (Red Hill Community Action) 2285). They believe seats will fill fast, so don’t delay! 



Submission to the planning zones review

Rosemary West

1. Background: Green Wedges and the role of the Green Wedges Coalition


 The 1968-71 metropolitan planning process officially established nine Green Wedges as non-urban zones between Melbourne's main urban development corridors. It outlined acceptable non-urban uses, including recreation, flora and fauna conservation. landscape protection, resource utilization and farming. The protection of public land and of public open space is integral to the first two of these uses, but not necessarily to the others.


Saturday, 29 September, 2012

Planning for disaster

Michael Buxton, The Age

Melbourne already has 30 years of land supply but Ted Baillieu and Matthew Guy want more.

HOPES have faded that the Baillieu government would continue the moderate approach to land use of former premier Sir Rupert Hamer. Instead this is government in the Jeff Kennett style.

The Baillieu administration is rushing to change the Victorian planning system, with radical deregulation changing Melbourne irrevocably for the worse.



Rosemary West

In the latest assault on Melbourne’s green wedges, Planning Minister Matthew Guy plans to take another 6000 ha from the green wedges to give Melbourne more urban sprawl and to concrete over more fertile farmland and environmentally significant wetlands, grasslands and woodlands. This is subject to a vote in Parliament which will bring huge unearned windfall profits to landholders, developers and their lobbyists, including Liberal party donors and fund-raisers: an estimated $500 million for one 103 ha property (see media coverage: Coalition policy is for another UGB review is due in two years, about the time of the next election.

This latest Green Wedge land grab will create continuing uncertainty around the Urban Growth Boundary by proposing 14 areas to be excised from the green wedges for urban growth and recommending a further 16 areas for “possible future review.” This signals that Melbourne will go on sprawling for as long as the Coalition Government stays in office. A further 20 green wedge areas were ruled out for urban development. This latest green wedge land grab is particularly deplorable as it is not based on any demonstrated need for more development land. The Growth Areas Authority recently estimated that the Growth Corridor Plans (for the 43,600 ha of land rezoned in 2010) would provide 20 to 50 years’ land supply for the continued urban sprawl which most of us don’t want. Every representative survey conducted, from Manningham’s in 2002 to Kingston’s in 2011, finds overwhelming majorities want green wedges protected for environmental conservation, agriculture, parklands, landscape value and recreation. It appears to breach federal requirements that environmental strategies to protect endangered species including Southern Brown Bandicoot, Growling Grass Frog and Golden Sun Moth must be finalised first and that urban development plans must work around them. None of these environmental strategies have been finalised and the SBB strategy has been postponed for six months. Meanwhile land that spans a proposed bandicoot habitat corridor in Casey has been approved for excision from the green wedge. See VNPA media release. We are calling on Matthew Guy to listen to communities, abandon plans for illogical incursions and return to policies to protect the green wedges. This may disappoint the developers and property consultants, but will please everyone else.

Her green vision should be hailed

Mary Delahunty should be remembered not for her occasional frustration with anti-development groups (''Delahunty memoir reveals developer sway on planning'', 22/8) but for her historic vision and the green wedges protection policy she developed with the backing of then premier Steve Bracks in 2002.



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