Community groups are making submissions on the Reformed Zones in Victoria. The government's zoning aims to increase commercial areas into residential areas in a serial manner and to intensify activity in the green wedges. The Department of Planning and Community Development has appointed a Ministerial Advisory Committee 'to review all submissions and provide advice back to the government', but the Chairman of the Committee is Geoff Underwood, who is prominent in the affairs of the Australian Population Institute (APop), which is officiated by professional developers and has the primary aim of promoting a huge population for Australia. What chances do robust submissions have with APop defining the parameters of planning in Victoria? See Planning Backlash submission inside.
The zones in question have as their stated objectives 'to better manage growth' and to 'simplify requirements' and to 'allow a broader range of activities to be considered' and 'to ensure that they still reflect the aspirations of all Victorians'.
Despite the latter objective, the zoning, if it remains as it is, will increase the intrusion of commercial areas into residential areas in a serial manner and intensify activity in the green wedges. The government has appointed the Ministerial Advisory Committee to consider all submissions, but the Chairman of the Committee has been prominent in the affairs of the Australian Population Institute from its beginning. APop is officiated by professional developers and has the aim of promoting a huge population for Australia. Along with billionaire, Richard Pratt and Steve Vizard, it played a major role in ex-Premier Steve Bracks's 2002 Melbourne Population Summit which began the current campaign to institute population growth as a norm for Australians and used sophisticated propaganda techniques to do this. See /node/594#comment-981and http://candobetter.net/node/149
The members of the committee are:
Geoff Underwood, Secretary to the Victorian Branch of APop http://www.apop.com.au/who.html
Chris Canavan, QC, represented Hotel Windsor Holdings in their bid to get an extension in time for redevelopment, which had been denied them by this [Baillieu] government.
Joanna Stanley, Communications Consultant with the particular specialty of "Advocacy and influence through media and stakeholder relations," but who is better known as the media spokesperson at Brunswick Residents Unite.
Liz Johnstone, Planner, Planning Institute of Australia and Manager, Planning Policy & Projects, Municipal Association of Victoria (MAV).
Planning Backlash's submission
Below is Planning Backlash's submission to the 'Reformed zones for Victoria' Ministerial Advisory Committee. It begins by thanking the Minister for his good work, because of his apparent receptiveness to the need for democratic input, however it then requests very challenging, but absolutely necessary, real reforms.
"Suburban - Residential
We agree with the proposed changes to residential zones as finally we can have the protections against inappropriate development that we have been advocating for since Melbourne 2030 was brought in and forced onto us by the previous government, in spite of our objections. The Residential Zones are excellent and we thank the Minister of Planning for his courage bringing these in, no doubt against the wishes of the DPCD.
However there are a number of points requiring amendment and the Minister has heard us voicing our concerns and has said he is open to change and is waiting for the report of the Review Committee. Our agreement to the whole zone concept is dependent on these amendments, because if these are excluded, the advantages would be seriously compromised.
List of Amendments that we request
1. The Minister will scrap the ‘within 100 metre’ of a commercial zone to prevent commercial creep into residential zones. This can in effect double the business area and has unwanted implications.
2. The Activity Centres will be Principal and Major also central, and must have fixed boundaries, and not extending out 400 metres.
3. Neighbourhood Activity Centres will be just local shopping strips.
4. There will be no population targets.
5. There will be no reduction in residents right to object and appeal.
6. Maximum heights must apply to all buildings in the zone.
7. The only uses not requiring permits in residential zones will be those not requiring permits now. Everything else requires a permit and residents retain the right to object. Current prohibitions must be retained with no dilution of present conditions. Rather, enhance the zones to provide the tools to enable the protection of neighbourhood character.
8. The Council working with residents can say where and how big the residential zones will be and the Minister will approve and the DPCD will not interfere.
9. If the Council wants mandatory heights the Minister will give it and the DPCD will not interfere.
10. No offices and shops as of right in the Residential Growth Zone (RGZ) or the General Residential Zone (GRZ).
11. No food and drink premises as of right in RGZ.
12. No medical centres as of right in RGZ, GRZ or Neighbourhood Residential Zone (NRZ).
13. No place of worship as of right in any residential zones.
14. No changes in size of land where houses can be built without a permit.
15. No to nine metre building heights in NRZ areas as these areas are predominantly one and two storey houses, or in GRZ where it conflicts with the Neighbourhood Character.
16. Neighbourhood character must be considered and this could mean in areas of predominantly single story detached housing that ResCode is varied to suit neighbourhood character, allowing prohibition of boundary to boundary dwellings
17. Height limits must apply to all buildings and not just residential. "
NEW POPULATION BOOK HOLDS SOLUTIONS TO OVERPOPULATION & HABITAT DEPLETION: Sheila Newman has just published new theory in a new book, Demography, Territory & Law: The Rules of Animal and Human Populations (see link). Two chapters are on multi-species demography, the rest apply the theory to non-industrial societies and the author comes up with a completely new test for the collapse model of Easter Island, which will stun those who thought they knew all about it. Forensic biologist, Hans Brunner writes of it: "This book takes us to a completely new paradigm in multiple species population science. It shows how little we understand, and how much we need to know, of the sexual reactions when closed colonies with an orderly reproduction system are destroyed, be it people or animals."