Residents gather to discuss Draft City Plan
About 45 residents gathered in Lind Street, Thornlands this afternoon to discuss the Redland City Council’s Draft City Plan.
Of particular concern is a proposal that part of Lind Street be rezoned from minimum block size of 6,000 sqm to allow residential development with an average lot size of 400 sqm.
Local residents discussed the proposed rezoning for this area and its likely impacts which include loss of significant trees and a huge increase in traffic volumes.
A draft submission, prepared by a local resident, has been made available as a template for others to use in making submissions.
Submissions about the Draft City Plan close on 27 November 2015.
Information about making submissions is available here.
Template submission – Lind Street Thornlands
If you are concerned about this proposed rezoning in the Draft City Plan you can use (and modify) this template and make a submission. The deadline for lodging a submission is 27 November 2015.
Chief Executive Officer
Attention: Draft Redland City Plan 2015
Redland City Council
PO Box 21
Cleveland, QLD 4163
OBJECTION TO REZONING 5-23 LIND STREET THORNLANDS AS LOW DENSITY RESIDENTIAL
The publication issued to advise residents of the Redland City plan contains the following text relevant for Lind Street.
A 3.7ha property south of Lind Street, Thornlands, is proposed to be zoned Low Density Residential. It is currently zoned Park Residential. The site is close to several schools, can be serviced by existing infrastructure and is accessed through a similar Low Density Residential area.
Property Number: 249470
Legal Description: Lot 800 SP 155697
Division Number: 3
Grounds for Objection
I am writing to lodge an objection to the Draft Redland City Plan 2015 for the proposed rezoning of the said 3.7 hectare property south of Lind Street, Thornlands, to low density residential. The land at 5-23 Lind Street is currently zoned as park residential and currently has overlays as described above.
The objection is based on the following:
1. The current zoning of the section of Lind Street is – Park Residential. This is listed under the “Conservation” heading on the Redland Planning maps. Indeed, it is listed as Koala habitat. The rezoning to low density residential may result in blocks that are as little as 400m2 and therefore out of step with the character of the surrounding development which consists of tree filled acreage on all three adjoining sides of the block in question and larger residential blocks (approximately 700m2) on the other side of the road. The rezoning to low density residential has a high potential to adversely impact on the ability of the area to protect the local wildlife. Rezoning would significantly inhibit the movement of wildlife through this green space as a result of increased fencing and loss of habitat. This would result in a loss of amenity for local wildlife, myself, my family, my neighbors and the surrounding existing landholders.
2. The land at 5-23 Lind Street backs on to acreage blocks which currently have building envelopes and environmental protection overlays. For example, trees cannot be cut down and building is restricted to portions of their total blocks. In essence, these are restrictions to ensure that those existing residents do not detrimentally impact on the character of the area and are a reflection of the importance of the wildlife area. The rezoning to low density significantly contrasts to the existing zoning of habitat protection as any development would result in the removal of habitat for wildlife, loss of green space and loss of amenity.
3. The block in question currently has a flood prone overlay. Water flows from the western side of the block to the north east to the storm water detention basin and provides a water source and habitat to the many Curlews, Water Fowl, Ducks, local Pheasants, Lorikeets, Cockatoos, (including Black Cockatoos), the local Wallaby population and Turtles. The proposed rezoning to low density would have a detrimental impact on the local wildlife and the amenity of the residents who live in the area.
4. The proposed rezoning may result in the removal of the stormwater dam. This provides a means of access to enable the wildlife to exist in the suburbs. Removal of this stormwater dam would remove the presence of both wildlife, native plants and green space for the existing residents resulting in a loss of amenity for the existing local residents. Indeed, it could be replaced by a road which would increase noise and create additional traffic hazards for local residents.
5. The planning scheme states that a Specific Outcome is that fencing does not inhibit the movement of native animals. Small lots will have significant impacts on the ability of native animals to move in this important natural habitat area.
6. The current zoning of Park Residential allows the retention of native plants. (4.17.7 (2) (d) (i) e.) As the native plants are consumed by the local fauna. For example, Wallabies eat the local grass and Cockatoos eat the Shee Oak trees. If the protection for the food of the wildlife is removed by lower density and even if it is taken away and later replaced by replanting in whatever vacant land remains left, the existing land based animals such as wallabies would either move or starve. The construction of 400m2 blocks is not consistent with supporting local wildlife.
7. I note that the Enhancement Area for bushland has been removed from the Proposed Plan. The retention of this overlay is a fundamental barrier to the urban areas and a buffer between the Environmentally Significant zones to the east of the block. I note that the wallabies appear to require adequate distance to live in the area as the urban noise and movement scares them. It is crucial that this overlay remains so that the Environmentally Significant zone is fully usable for wildlife. Removing this Enhancement Area will result in the Environmentally Significant zone simply become the next buffer zone! It will result in the destruction of wildlife in this area.
Built Form and Density
8. The “Overall Outcomes for Park Residential Zone Code” as per 4.17.7 include 5 key characteristics, one of which is “Amenity”. This includes ”contributing to a visual transition between urban and rural or bushland areas”. Given 5-23 Lind Street is surrounded on three sides by acreage and in front by lots that are almost double the 400m2 block size, the zone would not provide the transition referred to. If 400m2 blocks were to abut the existing acreages, there is no transition. The inclusion of Low Density Development of 400m2 blocks in the estate is a loss of green space and visual amenity and detracts from the existing character of the estate.
9. Under 4.17.7 the Overall Outcomes for the Park Residential Zone require for the (b) Built Form and Density that (iv) “Building appearance is compatible with the preservation of semi-rural bushland setting”. Given the acreage lots may have multiple lots abutting their property under a low density residential zone, the it would not be possible to preserve the appearance of a semi-rural bushland and clearly no transition from rural to urban.
Traffic, Parking, Emergency Vehicle and Service Vehicle Access
10. The proposed access to the Lind Street property is stated as being through “similar Low Density Residential”. Given that low density can now include blocks as low as 400m2, the impact on the residents currently living on the access – Lind Street – could be considerable. The “similar” current blocks are approximately 700 m2 with approximately 20 metre frontages. Given the low density blocks may be as small as 400m2 the “similar” blocks are almost double in size and potentially double the street frontage. I consider the statement in the flyer in the City Plan is misleading when it states that “the site is …. accessed through a similar Low Density Residential area” as allowing 400m2 lots (i.e. halving the lot size) is at odds with the existing development and should not be considered “similar”.
11. At the time of purchasing, a covenant existed which restricted development to ensure the development standards and planning scheme intent was maintained for the area. The development of smaller size blocks with access roads from Lind Street will reduce the tranquility of the area by the addition of considerably more traffic. Parking on streets at Lind Street is already a challenge with the narrow road only just sufficient for garbage truck pickup and emergency vehicle access. The additional proposed development will result in additional traffic movements and parking requirements which I believe would not be sufficiently catered for by the existing infrastructure.
12. The proposed rezoning allows smaller size blocks of 400m2. Given the total area of 37000 metres and that blocks could be as small as 400m2, it is possible that up to 92 blocks (less the provision of roads) could be built on that land. Given most families have two vehicles and traffic planning guidelines suggest nine traffic movements per car per day, the existing residents in the “Lind Street access” would be exposed to considerably more traffic volumes, traffic noise and vehicle lights. Based on the traffic movements, my family residing in a narrow residential street would be exposed to approximately 900 vehicle movements instead of the peaceful amenity of bush land frontage. This provides a considerable decrease in amenity for local residents.
13. The width of Lind Street is quite narrow. If residents park on the street, a car must venture to the other side of the road to pass. If residents were to park on either side of the road it would block it. Residents already currently park on the vacant side of Lind Street as a courtesy to prevent any impact on traffic. Given the rezoning may result in much smaller lot sizes, the access road will likely become very congested and existing residents would need to park on the road instead of the footpath as the vacant side of Lind Street would also be utilised by new residents or guests parking their cars on the road. This would block the street. Residents’ safety could be at risk as emergency services vehicles such as ambulances and fire engines may be obstructed due to the congestion of vehicles and narrow roads.
14. Part of the area and the area south west of the Lind Street block is also zoned a medium bushfire hazard. The proposed rezoning to low density residential will logically increase the presence of vehicles in the area and with the very narrow residential streets, restrict the access to emergency vehicles if there was a fire, putting residents (including the additional proposed residents), dwellings, wildlife and nature at high risk.
15. The proposed development would require cars to access the site via the roundabout on Conley Avenue, Vintage Drive and Ziegenfusz Road. This roundabout is already overloaded with residents experiencing difficulty leaving the area at school times. The addition of up to 100 – 200 new vehicles accessing this roundabout would adversely impact on the ability of residents to egress the estate. Given parents/carers dropping children off at school already park in Conley Avenue and Trundle Street this will create considerable traffic issues given the narrow streets. The increase in population and cars may endanger the safety of school aged children and their carers. In addition, previously during heavy downpours, this roundabout has flooded which has prevented two wheel drive vehicles from departing the estate.
16. As many residents work in Brisbane city, the provision of transport services is an important element for residents in the Lind Street surrounds. The only direct bus available for residents walking to a stop is the 273 (other further away stops require driving to the stop). The closest stop is on Moselle Drive. Given Zigenfusz is already busy especially at peak work and school times and yet to be fully impacted by the increase in traffic volumes from the recent Pinklands developments, Zigunfusz Road already very busy would be difficult to safely cross. If the rezoning occurs a pedestrian crossing would be required to cross this Ziegunfusz road.
Potential Flooding Impact
17. Given part of the lot is already marked as flood prone, the flow of water will be impacted by the developer and the eventual residences that are proposed to be built on the site. This may adversely impact on the existing adjacent residences and local watercourses as the timing of water flows down the hill will be altered. Although there has been no issue to date to the existing residences, altering the timing of water flows by any proposed development may create a flooding issue.
18. The area south of Lind Street does not have sewerage but instead relies on alternate treatment systems (septic). Residents have already invested in septic systems. A concern is held that they may be later requested to make a contribution to connect to the sewerage infrastructure that will be required to be constructed?
The current character of the estate is embodied by the prevalence of nature in an urban environment, children playing in the narrow suburban streets and low traffic volumes (except for the Conley Avenue in school times). The proposed rezoning will increase noise, increase traffic volumes, reduce the presence of local wildlife, reduce the ambience created by the green space and overall destroy the character of the estate for existing residents.
To be clear, I am not opposed to the development of the land in question with the existing planning scheme. However rezoning the property to low density residential which may involve blocks as low as 400m2 provides the risk of development which is significantly out of character with the transition from the acreage (more rural) blocks to 700 m2 urban blocks
People invest in the Redlands to live, to work, to bring up their families, enjoy the lifestyle and the green spaces. Please do not destroy what we came here to enjoy.