Kyneton South subdivision to VCAT

Residents of Kyneton South say Harpers Lane could not cope with the amount of traffic a proposed 87-lot subdivision would create.

Residents of Kyneton South have won the support of the local council in their fight against an 87-lot subdivision for Harpers Lane but the decision will ultimately fall to the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal.
The developer has taken the matter to VCAT after council failed to decide on the application within the prescribed time, but councillors determined at their meeting last week that they would have refused it.
Council’s director of planning and environment Angela Hughes told the meeting officers had considered the application against the planning scheme, and 26 objections received, and found key problems centred on it not responding appropriately to the character and constraints of the site and surrounds with lot sizes that would not facilitate an adequately low-density development character in context of interfaces with surrounding properties.
“On this basis it is recommended that council resolve it does not support the application and that council would have refused the application had it not been appealed to VCAT,” Ms Hughes said.
Cr Janet Pearce moved a motion, seconded by Cr Rob Guthrie, in support of the officer recommendation with an additional point that the application did not take into account the heritage value of the bluestone pavers within Harpers Lane.
The motion was supported by all councillors. Cr Mark Ridgeway had earlier declared an interest.
Local resident Chris Kakris said objectors were buoyed by the decision of council and hopeful they would get a chance at VCAT to register their issues.
“Our current neighbourhood character is lots of farmland, lots of rural land and large blocks of two acres and above so the proposal to put in 87 half-acre blocks is definitely out of character,” Mr Kakris said.
“The current proposal puts all of the traffic from the subdivision onto Harpers Lane, and Harpers Lane is already very dangerous.”
Neighbouring landowners Ruth and Ian Williams said the intersection posed the triple danger of the bend in the road on a hill, the western sun, and fog and black ice in winter.
“The intersection has proved difficult already to make adequate safety improvements,” Ms Williams said.
“Blind Freddie can see that the corner of Lauriston Reservoir Road and Harpers Lane is dangerous already, so to spill 400 more trips a day onto Harpers Lane from an 87-lot subdivision won’t work.”