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Frankston City Council introduces Priority Planning

Frankston City Council have taken a proactive step in enabling further investment to flow into the municipality by implementing further changes to their planning framework, designed to expedite planning applications and enhance investment potential in the area.

Frankston City Council has developed an innovative program, called Priority Planning, to facilitate significant commercial precinct development within the Frankston city centre, and potentially other parts of the municipality, which demonstrate significant economic benefit.

The process seeks to ‘cut red tape’ by ensuring more efficient planning decisions are made on applications that drive employment and/or activate the Frankston city centre, while encouraging high quality developments.

Invest Frankston: Priority Planning

Priority Planning revolves around pre-application meetings between Council and the applicant in order to communicate issues and mitigate points of difference, thus avoiding these once the application is submitted. Over a five year period average planning process days for delegated planning decisions have tumbled from near on 105 days to just 45 days.

There are two streams in the streamlined application process. Stream 1 deals with moderate sized applications that can be delegated to Council officers. Stream 2 deals with major applications with a development cost of over $ 5 million and/or three or more levels, which must be considered by Councillors.

Invest Frankston: Priority Planning
446-450 Nepean Highway. Image © Doig Architects

Ultimately the revised process equates to major projects being resolved within a nominated 60 day period. An example of a Stream 2 project is the above 11-level office tower at which was highlighted by Urban Melbourne earlier in the year. 446-450 Nepean Highway has since been approved and stands as an example of Frankston City Council's willingness to generate investment into the city via higher density developments.

The delivery of prompt processes to prospective developers will send a strong message that Frankston is open for business. We are a city undergoing transformation and we have to capitalise on the interest in our city right now and Priority Planning is already reaping excellent results.

Darrel Taylor, Frankston City Mayor

Comment

Hats off to Frankston City Council for beating their drum in terms of encouraging investment, although one adage comes to mind: you can lead a horse to water, but you can't make it drink.

While the new $80 million South East Water HQ may act as a generator for investment, some of the good work seems to have been undone by the apparent failure of Airio Apartments. With online sales no longer visible and the project website banished, it seems demand is not quite there for a 14 level apartment tower in Frankston.

Regardless, see the good work of Frankston City Council via Invest Frankston.

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