Sunday, June 23, 2024

Georges River commits to housing crisis action

Georges River Councillors have unanimously resolved to address the national housing crisis with a new Additional and Diverse Housing Planning Proposal for the local government area.

Mayor, Sam Elmir said Council was committed to delivering its share of the National Housing Accord.

The new Planning Proposal responds to the NSW Government’s Low and Mid-Rise Housing proposal, which will significantly increase housing in the local area but does so using a set of State-wide blanket ‘one-size-fits-all’ controls, said the Mayor.

“This very important report is the combination of seven months of hard work by our expert planning team so that Georges River is in the best position possible to be in control of our planning destiny,” he said.

“The proposal provides very sensible and balanced development outcomes to address the urgent need for increased housing and diversity across the Georges River area while still safeguarding local natural environment, heritage, biodiversity, tree canopy cover and the unique character of our residential suburbs.”

To ensure protection for unique local characteristics like heritage, the foreshore environment and biodiversity, the proposal strikes a balance across all these priorities in the Georges River community, said the Mayor.

The Planning Proposal responds to the current housing crisis in view to allow 8,245 new dual occupancies, townhouses, villas and small-scale apartments in low and medium density residential areas. This is to provide more types of housing, especially for families and downsizers, the Council said in a statement.

“It has been prepared with our local community in mind by tailoring the planning controls to create new family homes that respect and enhance the ‘green and leafy’ character of our suburbs.  Council also developed these controls based on the protection of local heritage, biodiversity, the foreshore scenic areas, landscaping and tree canopy cover,” it said.

“Council is committed to addressing the urgent need for increased housing capacity and diversity across the Georges River but is recommending our proposal in lieu of the Low and Mid-Rise Housing proposal to the State Government to strike a balance between providing additional dwellings and the protecting environment and local character of our suburbs.”

To ensure development is balanced with the protection of local biodiversity and character, the Planning Proposal will be progressed concurrently with the Biodiversity, Character and FSPA Planning Proposal (PP2024/0002) to implement the Georges River Biodiversity Study and Foreshore Scenic Character Study, the Council said.

“The Planning Proposal will only be progressed if Council is granted a deferral from the State Government’s Low and Mid-Rise Housing proposal.”

The Proposal is one component within a series of projects that Council is working on to create more housing. Council also will shortly commence the preparation of master plans for the Kogarah Town Centre and the Riverwood Local Centre to facilitate the delivery of well-located homes and jobs. 

The Council has also adopted a staged approach to local planning growth, to ensure it is sustainable over the long term. 

To read the Additional and Diverse Housing Planning Proposal, visit the Georges River Council – Planning Proposals (nsw.gov.au).

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