The Woden Valley Community Council has hailed changes to Geocon’s proposed four-building WOVA development on the Woden Tradies site as a victory for the community.
The ACT’s planning authority has approved Geocon’s amended development application that was lodged in the wake of community concerns about the proposal, but imposed conditions relating to the height of the building fronting Melrose Drive.
Geocon proposes a mixed-use development on the site bounded by Launceston Street, Melrose Drive and Furzer Street consisting of 800 residential apartments as well as retail, community and commercial uses across four buildings ranging from 12 to 24 storeys, with parking for 1160 vehicles.
Concerns focused on potential overshadowing of the Bellerive Retirement Village on Melrose Drive and the sheer size of the development.
Geocon reduced the building height and mass fronting on to Melrose Drive and increased the height of the building fronting Furzer Street, but the approval is conditional on reducing the scale of Building 4, which fronts Melrose Drive, from 16 storeys to 12 storeys and for the upper levels of that building to be terraced. Among other conditions, the facades and landscaping will also need to be improved.
WVCC president Fiona Carrick said development was welcome but the community wanted it to be done well.
“While we still have concerns about the size and scale of this development, we acknowledge the improvements that reduce the overshadowing of the Bellerive Retirement Village and the condition to improve the facade,” she said.
“Thank you to everyone who lodged a submission. This outcome demonstrates that the community can make a difference.”
ACT Chief Planner Ben Ponton said there had been 109 representations from the community on the original application and the changes provided an excellent outcome for the community as well as the developer.
“These changes provided a considerable improvement to the overshadowing impacts of the development,” he said.
“WOVA and the associated extensive areas of public space and commercial tenancies will provide another valuable contribution to the energy of the Woden Town Centre at a time of renewed growth for this important centre.”