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All Fishermans Bend proposals headed for mass approval?

Community turned advocacy group Fishermans Bend Network recently released a detailed discussion piece on the progress of Fishermans Bend. Central to the report are four guiding principles devised by the network in order to facilitate a quality outcome for the urban renewal area:

  1. Governance structures able to deliver the vision, the expertise and the processes needed to generate a real and robust city
  2. A funding model and funding mechanisms able to direct government and private funding to securing the early provision of the environmental, transport and community infrastructure needed to generate a well-planned city
  3. A commitment to recognise best-practise urban design principles for producing a genuinely liveable, sustainable, diverse and vibrant city
  4. A comprehensive implementation plan that closes the widening gap between the government’s stated visions and their likely delivery on the ground

What immediately jumped off the screen is this quote provided by Fishermans Bend Network:

Reports are circulating that the Minister and /or the MPA is proposing to approve all of the applications on his desk - in total 34 towers, all within the Montague area, which has no infrastructure (currently or budgeted for future development) to support these developments.

Fishermans Bend Network e-mail, 2014-05-25

Would this not be akin to the cat jumping out of the bag and opening Pandora's box in order to get to the can of worms? If the above proves to be true the public discussion following will be well worth following. Nonetheless issues have arisen with certain areas of Montague and the inability of developers to gain a return on investment due to prohibitive preliminary height limits, or so it has been reported widely.

A likely outcome would see Lorimer Precinct remain free of height limits, while Mongague Precinct and Sandridge Precinct (to Boundary Street) would have their preliminary structure plans augmented to allow far higher density outcomes. In this the majority of Fishermans Bend would remain low and medium-rise while at the same time appeasing the array of local developers who have to date submitted planning applications.

The map above (provided by Fishermans Bend Network) highlights approved small scale and high-rise developments principally within the Montague precinct.

In addition, ten residential towers had been submitted for approval within Lorimer Precinct, while an earlier proposal at 125-133 Thistlethwaite Street had been withdrawn, pending the final structure plan which will be delivered by Planning Minister Matthew Guy shortly.

Read more in Fishermans Bend Network's report: 'A cleverly densified inner city?'. To provide context, the images below were created by Laurence Dragomir - featuring Montague precinct's envisaged skyline - created for Melbourne Knowledge Week 2013.

Montague Precinct within the wider Fisherman Bend. Image © Laurence Dragomir

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