Skip to content Skip to main navigation

Opinion

Expert strata, facilities & building management services

New Canberra Brickworks plan a win for the community

By TheYRA - 31 August 2015 16

artists impression yarralumla brickworks

The Yarralumla Residents Association welcomes the government’s scaled down development plans near the Canberra Brickworks and looks forward to further discussion about the details within the new designated boundary.

We acknowledge the efforts of our members, local residents and people across Canberra who have raised their concerns during recent years. Such efforts have made the government rethink what had been a series of unacceptable proposals. We hope this marks a new era of improved government consultation with communities across the ACT.

The reduction in the maximum height of dwellings from 8 storeys to 3 storeys is in line with community requests and no longer contravenes the government’s own planning rules. The reduction in the total number of dwellings from 1,880 to a new maximum of 380 is more in keeping with community expectations.

The YRA is particularly pleased that the walking circuit that follows the ‘Old Uriarra Track’ and links Yarralumla to Dunrossil Drive will now be retained.  While the track will still be dissected by a road that links the Brickworks to Dudley Street and the Cotter Road, we expect that it will remain serviceable as a circuit for all Canberrans to enjoy.

Big winners from the government’s announcement of a smaller scale development appear to be the Golden Sunmoth, the native grasslands and the Governor General, all now lying outside the designated boundary. The Governor General will not face the prospect of having to share a driveway with the brickworks.

Other big winners are future residents not being forced into an inappropriate grid design on the site, Canberrans who support the principles of the Griffin plan, and local residents that may have been subject to rat running through the suburbs.

While cautiously optimistic about the government’s new proposal, we are yet to see the details of street layout and location of residential sites within the new precinct boundaries.  We also need more details on the protection of the public realm and funding for the brickworks, which should be at the heart of the development.

The development will also exacerbate the current congestion on Dudley Street, and put additional pressure on the Yarralumla Shops (which suffer a chronic shortage of car spaces). We will continue to press the government on how to resolve these issues.

We look forward to further consultation with relevant government agencies and stakeholders to ensure that any development is sustainable, in keeping with the character of Yarralumla, and contributes to the wider Canberra community.

(Photo: An artist’s impression of developments previously proposed for Yarralumla, via the Land Development Agency.)

What’s Your opinion?


Post a comment
Please login to post your comments, or connect with
16 Responses to
New Canberra Brickworks plan a win for the community
Acton 11:45 am 01 Sep 15

Zultan said :

Me wonders if this was the plan all along. The Yarra nimbies would have objected to this proposal if it had been wheeled out at the start. This way, they accept a compromise and feel a bullet was dodged. Just a thought.

If Zultan is right about it always being the intention of the ACT Government/LDA/Property Council to have a small development, then this represents a massive fraud and costly deception imposed upon the residents and ratepayers of Canberra. The work and numerous consultancies involved in pushing for large scale development over the years would have cost millions.
Rather it is a case of: “To ask too much is the way to be denied all.”
In any case, what should residents have done? Nothing? And what do you think would have happened then?
As we know from the Higgins oval, the Telopea playing fields and other recreational areas around Canberra, this is a government desperate to flog off any land it can to its highest bidding property developer mates.
If you love your home and the environment you live in, if you want our kids to have open spaces, then you have an obligation to show some intestinal fortitude when someone wants to take that land away from you.
A meek and mild populace has always been the desire of a bullying and arrogant government. This is our city and our home and the Barr Government/LDA/Property Council and their associated hangers on must stop acting like feudal robber barons trying to appropriate land from the local peasants.

TheYRA 11:20 am 01 Sep 15

Acton said :

Community activism and a 4000+ petition has achieved a sensible compromise and stopped destruction of a valued recreational area. Bird-lovers, dog-walkers, joggers, local kids and residents will now continue to enjoy these woodland walking trails.
It was simply irresponsible of the LDA to propose flattening and bulldozing a significant ACT habitat for a critically endangered species.

Despite the predictable squawks of ‘nimbyism’ from certain quarters, this exercise in environmental vandalism was averted.
Well done YRA for all your work in opposing what was rightfully described by one planning expert as a ‘monstrosity’ of a scheme:

http://www.canberratimes.com.au/comment/ct-letters/canberra-brickworks-and-environs-strategy-dicing-with-disaster-20150311-141ds2.html

Thank you – the ‘monstrosity’ of a scheme has been averted. There are still many issues to be resolved and we appreciate that the Chief Minister has listened to our concerns. The LDA has now promised to consult with the YRA and other stakeholders in a ‘proposed community engagement model’. We look forward to working with the LDA to find the best possible outcome for all Canberrans.

TheYRA 11:15 am 01 Sep 15

rubaiyat said :

Still need to fix transport issues, and would it be too “Out of the Box” to orient the new dwellings to the northern sun, and protect them from our cold winter South Westerlies as it is actually on the leading southern edge of Yarralumla, sloping to the south?

We agree that transport remains a problem. Dudley Street is alreay congested and the projections look dire. The new develoment will exacerbate the problems. The ACT government will now need to look at a fix for Dudley Street, Kent Street/Novar Street Bridge and access to Deakin from Cotter Road unrelated to the Brickworks development. The YRA looks forward to being part of that discussion.

We have been pushing for any development to be sustainable and with solar access. There were major issues with the previous grid pattern, orientation and flat-earth policy in the previous 1800 residence proposal. We plan to work closely with the LDA to achieve the best possible outcome for future residents.

TheYRA 11:03 am 01 Sep 15

madelini said :

I don’t think that the Yarralumla shops will become significantly more congested. While there will be more residents in the area, the shops aren’t a destination for people doing large grocery shops (the IGA being better for unusual items or for topping up bits and pieces. The cafes, pizza place and kebab shop are ace, but are popular with people who live outside of Yarralumla as well.

Yarralumla’s proximity to Deakin, Manuka and Woden will give new residents lots of options for doing their local shop. Also, being only a ten minute walk from the Brickworks (and faster by bike) perhaps that will be a better option for the people lucky enough to live there.

We will be pushing for walking and bike paths along with other sustainable design features for any development.
We are yet to see the proposed street layout in the new precinct, but we have always noted that the Curtin Shops would likely attract the most customers when there is direct access to the Cotter Road.

The Yarralumla Shops is certainly frequented by many people who do not live in the suburb. Apart from the great restaurants and cafes, there is also a post office, florist, drycleaners, butcher, dayspa, and a couple of hairdressers. The doctors surgery also attracts patients from outside the suburb. The Yarralumla Shops suffer a chronic shortage of car parks. The YRA has been working with the ACT government on possibly solutions. One architect who was working closely with the LDA suggested we needed to knock all the shops down and put in underground car park.

The reduction in the number residences from 1800 to a maximum of 380 is certainly welcome, but we cannot ignore the additional pressure on the parking at the shops.

TheYRA 10:49 am 01 Sep 15

rosscoact said :

Hopefully a fair number of those will be affordable housing as, if I recall, this was never an issue.

The YRA has always been open to public housing being part of any development near the brickworks, but the government has specifically excluded the area from future public housing plans. The proximity to the lake and Civic and the government’s need for revenue makes it hard to believe what can be described as ‘affordable housing’ will be built in the area. The Chief Minister has said there will be a maximum of 380 apartments of 175 townhouses. We realistically expect a mix of the two. The YRA has been advocating for any development to include accommodation suitable for the elderly, which would allow current ageing Yarralumla residents to stay in the suburb and pass on their standalone houses to a new generation. The flaw in this argument has been the lack of accessibility to transport and shopping facilities. We wait to see how the LDA will address these issues within the new boundary of the Canberra Brickworks Precinct.

TheYRA 10:41 am 01 Sep 15

Zultan said :

Me wonders if this was the plan all along. The Yarra nimbies would have objected to this proposal if it had been wheeled out at the start. This way, they accept a compromise and feel a bullet was dodged. Just a thought.

The YRA has been pushing for the Canberra Brickworks to be at the heart of any development in the area. We are genuinely pleased that the government has committed to restore and activate the Old Canberra Brickworks. The Brickworks Artisan and Designer Hub, reported in the Canberra Times recently, is one exciting possibility and we will be closely monitoring the government’s roll out of plans for the area. The government has also committed to a new form of community consultation and we will be meeting with the LDA in the next few weeks. We are cautiously optimistic that the government will deliver, but there are many unanswered questions so the community will remain closely involved.

madelini 9:11 am 01 Sep 15

I don’t think that the Yarralumla shops will become significantly more congested. While there will be more residents in the area, the shops aren’t a destination for people doing large grocery shops (the IGA being better for unusual items or for topping up bits and pieces. The cafes, pizza place and kebab shop are ace, but are popular with people who live outside of Yarralumla as well.

Yarralumla’s proximity to Deakin, Manuka and Woden will give new residents lots of options for doing their local shop. Also, being only a ten minute walk from the Brickworks (and faster by bike) perhaps that will be a better option for the people lucky enough to live there.

rosscoact 6:10 am 01 Sep 15

Hopefully a fair number of those will be affordable housing as, if I recall, this was never an issue.

rommeldog56 11:36 pm 31 Aug 15

Zultan said :

Me wonders if this was the plan all along. The Yarra nimbies would have objected to this proposal if it had been wheeled out at the start. This way, they accept a compromise and feel a bullet was dodged. Just a thought.

This is the ACT Government we are talking about, so I would never confuse their rank stupidity for rat cunning.

rubaiyat 10:47 pm 31 Aug 15

Zultan said :

Me wonders if this was the plan all along. The Yarra nimbies would have objected to this proposal if it had been wheeled out at the start. This way, they accept a compromise and feel a bullet was dodged. Just a thought.

It occurred to me that the previous plan was an ambit claim too.

Just as the Dickson monstrosity most definitely is.

gooterz 10:35 pm 31 Aug 15

Zultan said :

Me wonders if this was the plan all along. The Yarra nimbies would have objected to this proposal if it had been wheeled out at the start. This way, they accept a compromise and feel a bullet was dodged. Just a thought.

Would be nice if we were let in on the master plan. Accountability, so when a small development changes into a skyscraper we can say.. why did it change on such a date rather than being left in the dark on everything.

In the Griffin days everything was planned to a T, now we’re lucky to get told a month out from contacts being signed, or the master planning is done after money is paid to developers. Where’s the master plan for light rail?

Come October 13 everything we do online will be tracked and recorded for someone elses viewing pleasure and yet we’re always kept in the dark.

watto23 9:45 pm 31 Aug 15

Zultan said :

Me wonders if this was the plan all along. The Yarra nimbies would have objected to this proposal if it had been wheeled out at the start. This way, they accept a compromise and feel a bullet was dodged. Just a thought.

Would not surprise me. Put in radical plans, let the Nimby’s scream then put in the appropriate plans so they feel like they have a victory.

Zultan 8:25 pm 31 Aug 15

Me wonders if this was the plan all along. The Yarra nimbies would have objected to this proposal if it had been wheeled out at the start. This way, they accept a compromise and feel a bullet was dodged. Just a thought.

rubaiyat 4:13 pm 31 Aug 15

Still need to fix transport issues, and would it be too “Out of the Box” to orient the new dwellings to the northern sun, and protect them from our cold winter South Westerlies as it is actually on the leading southern edge of Yarralumla, sloping to the south?

Acton 12:20 pm 31 Aug 15

Community activism and a 4000+ petition has achieved a sensible compromise and stopped destruction of a valued recreational area. Bird-lovers, dog-walkers, joggers, local kids and residents will now continue to enjoy these woodland walking trails.
It was simply irresponsible of the LDA to propose flattening and bulldozing a significant ACT habitat for a critically endangered species. Despite the predictable squawks of ‘nimbyism’ from certain quarters, this exercise in environmental vandalism was averted.
Well done YRA for all your work in opposing what was rightfully described by one planning expert as a ‘monstrosity’ of a scheme:

http://www.canberratimes.com.au/comment/ct-letters/canberra-brickworks-and-environs-strategy-dicing-with-disaster-20150311-141ds2.html

Related Articles

CBR Tweets

Sign up to our newsletter

Top
Copyright © 2017 Riot ACT Holdings Pty Ltd. All rights reserved.
www.the-riotact.com | www.b2bmagazine.com.au | www.thisiscanberra.com

Search across the site