Glen Iris

The future of the former Glen Iris Golf Course

Glen Iris is a privately owned Golf Course which was purchased by the Eastcourt Property Group in early 2020. Eastcourt has indicated that it intends to develop the land as a residential estate.

Many of our residents enjoyed using the Golf Course. Others live close by and consider it an important part of their neighbourhood’s amenity. The City acknowledges that there is a great deal of anxiety in our community about the future of the land.

Here we wish to explain:
  • What happens next / the process
  • What the City’s role is in that process
  • What is happening at the site now
  • And provide a detailed FAQ

What will happen next?

Receipt of formal application

The City expects the applications to formally request the redevelopment will be lodged with the City soon. This will include:
  • A rezoning request (known as a scheme amendment – which is a request to change the permitted use of the land); and
  • A draft structure plan (principally a map showing the broad layout of the proposed estate, supported by detailed technical studies)

Steps before public advertising

Once those are received, City officers will check these to make sure they are complete and contain enough information to inform advertising. Before advertising can happen, there are still some formal steps that need to happen, including:
  • Seeking Council approval to start the formal process in the form of a Council report to a Council meeting.
  • Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) referral
  • WA Planning Commission consent to advertise.

Time between lodging of the applications and public advertising

The time between the lodging of the application and the formal advertising by the City can take several months. This is dependent on what timeframe in the Council meeting cycle the application is lodged, the quality of the information provided; and how quickly the EPA and WA Planning Commission respond.

Community Engagement

The City advertises planning applications, rezoning requests (scheme amendments) and structure plans for public comment.

Any rezoning initiated is likely to follow the ‘complex’ amendment planning stream requiring a 60-day period when the application is advertised. 

The City typically does so through the publishing of a notice in the Cockburn Gazette, and writing to nearby landowners advising that a full copy of the proposal including all technical reports will be available to view and download via the City’s Comment on Cockburn website opens in a new window.

A hard copy will be available for public inspection at City offices and the Cockburn Central library.

The process and key considerations relating to this stage in the overall planning process are as follows:
 
Planning Process / Key Milestones Key Considerations
Amending Planning Scheme (rezoning):
  • Initiation by Council
  • EPA referral
  • WA Planning Commission consent to advertise
  • Advertising – public / government agencies
  • Council compiles report on submissions and makes recommendation on finalisation
  • Process and recommendation reviewed by WA Planning Commission
  • Final decision by Minister
  • Alignment with state level planning (Sub-Regional Planning Framework, State Planning Policies and Metropolitan Region Scheme)
  • Why the zoning change is being requested
  • If changed, what is the appropriate zoning (e.g. a development area to enable a structure plan or straight to a particular zone)
  • Analysis of supporting assessments (e.g. environmental, servicing capability, traffic, bushfire, drainage etc.)
Structure Planning
  • Applicant preparation
  • Submission to Council
  • Assessment against Local Planning Scheme Regulation requirements (i.e. is the information provided sufficient to advertise?)
  • Advertising – to the public / government agencies
  • Council compiles report on submissions and makes recommendation on finalisation
  • Final decision by WA Planning Commission
  • Broad level design and interface with surrounding development
  • Liaison with adjacent landowners/community
  • Alignment with state level planning (policies such as Liveable Neighbourhoods)
  • Analysis of supporting assessments (e.g. environmental, servicing capability, traffic, bushfire, drainage etc.)
  • Key matters to be addressed at subdivision level.
 
At the completion of advertising, the City must consider both proposals, and make a final recommendation to the Minister for Planning and WA Planning Commission (respectively) on how those proposals should ultimately be determined.

The entire process can take many months, even years, from formal lodgement through to completion (links to the relevant WAPC process flowcharts can be viewed in or FAQ’s below).
 

What is happening to the land right now?

Eastcourt has started to prepare the land for their planned development. This includes removing reticulation, removing and pruning trees, draining artificial lakes, and installing new fencing.

The City strongly encourages the retention of mature trees within new development areas where possible although it has no legal power to enforce this. The City will assess the environmental report submitted with the future structure plan, with regard to both tree retention and impact on native fauna, including relocations as needed.

Any trees within existing road reserves remain the City’s property and will be protected accordingly.

How do I find out more information?

Eastcourt have employed Acumen Development Solutions as their community liaison. Enquiries may be directed to their Community Engagement Manager, Louise Richardson via email or telephone (08) 6115 6365, 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday.

Enquiries about the planning process can be directed to the City’s Strategic Planning team on 9411 3444.

More detailed information is also available in the FAQ below.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Who owns the former Glen Iris Golf Course?
The original developers sold the former Glen Iris Golf Course to the property developers Eastcourt early in 2020.

The City has never had any involvement in the ownership or operation of the golf course.
Has Council considered buying the golf course?
The City has never seriously contemplated purchasing the Glen Iris Golf Course.  In 2017 it commenced investigating the viability of acquiring and managing the land, but was denied access to important due diligence information.

The Glen Iris Golf Course was a privately owned and operated public golf course that has since been sold to Eastcourt in a private sale.
What can the owners develop on the former Golf Course?
The golf course area is currently zoned ‘Special Use No. 1’ which permits a golf course estate, private recreation, hotel, convention centre and associated uses. There is also a small area, approximately 2ha, upon which the driving range is located, which is zoned ‘Residential R40’.
What if they want to do something else with the land?
To develop the land for any other purpose, three separate processes are required:
  • a scheme amendment to rezone the land
  • preparation of a structure plan describing the general development intent and providing site and contextual analysis, environmental, servicing, and transport considerations
  • a plan of subdivision showing lot configuration, roads, public open space etc.
Do they have to use the land for something?
No
What processes do they need to go through to change the use of the land?
The planning processes are guided by state regulation. The Department of Planning, Lands and Heritage (DPLH) website contains flowcharts explaining processes are available at: While the City plays a significant role in undertaking community and stakeholder consultation for scheme amendments and structure plans and then reporting these to the WA Planning Commission, it is not the decision maker.
 
Who is the decision maker?
Scheme amendments: Minister for Planning
Structure plans: WA Planning Commission
Subdivision: WA Planning Commission
Has the City received any applications yet? What conversations have the City has with the developer? Has the City provided support for the proposal?
Whilst a proposal is considered imminent, the City has not yet received any applications to redevelop the land at this point in time, nor have any ‘assurances’ been given to the purchaser.
What happens when an application is formally lodged?
The City must first check the adequacy of the proposal and the content of the information supplied.

Ultimately the City must consider the merits of the rezoning and Council decide whether to proceed with preparing an amendment to its local planning scheme.  If so, it must also advise what application stream the proposal should follow under the Local Planning Scheme Regulations (i.e. basic, standard or complex).

If refused by the City, Eastcourt has means under s.76 of the Planning & Development Act (2005) to request Ministerial intervention.
If a local scheme amendment is initiated, it would likely follow the ‘complex’ amendment stream due to redevelopment not currently being foreshadowed in the City’s draft Local Planning Strategy, its overall scale, and its potential for impact on the broader locality.

 
Will I get a chance to comment?
Yes, but only if consent to advertise is given by the State Government.

Both the Local Scheme Amendment and Structure Plan processes involve a period of public advertisement, often run at the same time for residential estates.

Different matters are relevant to each process, as broadly outlined in the considerations table that appears in the project summary section above.
 
How will I be able to get a copy of the application?
Should advertising proceed, the City will write to all directly affected residents notifying them that the proposal is available for public inspection.

A full copy of the proposal including all technical reports will be available to view and download via the City’s Comment on Cockburn website opens in a new window.

Hard copies will be available for public inspection at City offices and the Cockburn Central library.
 
When will Council consider the application?
A report considering whether to initiate the proposed rezoning and associated draft Structure Plan will go before the City’s Elected Members later in 2021.

If initiated as a ‘complex’ amendment, both Western Australian Planning Commission (WAPC) consent, and Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) clearance will then be required before a minimum 60-day public advertisement period can commence.
 
What role does the City and Council take in the redevelopment process?
As a local government, our role in the key planning processes (for redevelopments) can be summarised as follows (the distinction of Council and City is used for clarity between Elected Members and the role of the Administration):
  • Council initiates the rezoning process through a report being brought to Council. This is a crucial step in the process which cannot be undertaken by City staff
  • The City determines whether there is sufficient information submitted to advertise a proposal.
  • The City facilitates community engagement and statutory consultation period
  • The City provides technical guidance and information on policy/regulation
  • The City compiles submissions
  • Council makes a recommendation to the decision maker for scheme amendment (Minister for Planning) and structure plans (WAPC)
  • The City makes recommendation to the decision maker (WAPC) for subdivisions (including whether they are aligned to the earlier stages of the planning processes and suitable technical conditions)
The City is not the ultimate decision maker in the planning process for these proposals, and any recommendations that the City makes must be in line with legislation and State Government policy.
 
Has this been approved already?
No ‘assurances’ been given to the developer. We understand the value you place on your neighbourhood and that you will be interested in any proposals to change land uses or zonings.
I was told this would always be open space/golf course
The City cannot comment on what others have previously stated, including developers of the original estate or people selling established homes or lots in the estate. The City is not a part of those transactions.

In terms of the City’s information, the land has never been indicated as public open space or any other form of reserve. It has always been privately owned.
Traffic/access concerns
Any application to rezone the land would need to address issues such as traffic generation and access.
Clearing bush/vegetation/wildlife concerns Including draining lakes)
Any application to rezone the land would need to address issues including environmental assessment.  With Department Biodiversity Conservation and Attractions (DBCA) approval the lakes were drained in July 2020 allowing the turtles to be  relocated to an approved location.  This was determined to be the best outcome given they were residing in a private dam on the golf course. DBCA are the approving authority with regards to management of native wildlife and issuing permits for fauna relocation.
What powers do the City have to make sure the property doesn’t become an ‘eyesore’?
There are no provisions in any Act which the local government can use to force landowners to keep their property well-manicured and irrigated.
 
Should there be other matters such as illegal dumping or storage of materials, then the City is able to deal with this.
 
Under the Local Government Act, the City’s Rangers can ensure the property is kept in a tidy condition; this is generally only applied in a circumstance where a build-up of disused material is readily seen from the Road.
 
If there is a build-up of grass, the City can initiate a Works Order on the owner to ensure the grass is mown. Like previous years, the Golf Course will still be inspected each year (in November/ Dec) by the City’s Fire Officer
Can the City force the new landowner to keep using it as a golf course?
No, the former Glen Iris Golf Course is private land and like any private landowner, they are allowed to discontinue the use of a property and leave it vacant.
Can the City force the new landowner to keep the amenities on the land (such as the clubhouse)
No, this is private land and like any private landowner, they are allowed to apply to demolish buildings.
Can the City stop demolition of buildings?
No - while the City is responsible for issuing demolition licences for any buildings proposed to be removed, this only regulates the demolition process and does not give the City the ability to refuse the demolition.
Can the City force the new landowner to keep watering the grass/trees?
No, the former Glen Iris Golf Course is private land and like any private landowner, if they decide not to irrigate their land, that is their choice.
 
Grass will have to be mown during summer to an acceptable height.
Can the City ensure fire breaks are provided?
A firebreak variation has been approved by the City.

The entire site will be managed to a low fuel state during the high threat period, allowing vehicles to traverse it as per the requirements of the variation.

Outside of the high threat period the grass will be managed within 20m of adjacent residential properties.
Seeking commitment from Elected Members to not support rezoning/redevelopment
Elected Members are not able to provide commitments to support or otherwise on any matter until Council’s formal deliberations as part of a Council meeting.
How could redevelopment affect the price of my home?
While value of property can be an important consideration for home owners, it is not a matter which local government is permitted to consider in its assessment as a ‘planning consideration’. Therefore, if this is a concern it is best to speak to a property valuer.
What is the status of the developer-run Community Reference Group and workshops?
The City has no direct involvement with this initiative, including its membership structure, and while we see this as a positive engagement strategy, this process is the landowner’s voluntary consultation and plays no part in the statutory planning processes. This consultation serves to give the local community an opportunity to contribute to the draft development proposal. 

The Reference Group and its outputs will not be considered as representative of the local community’s views, and prior to assessing any formal re-development proposal, the City will undertake its own consultation, ensuring all local residents have the opportunity to comment on the site’s future.
We note there are landowners who have chosen not to be involved in the developer run consultation and respect that right.
Will there still be government-led consultation?
Yes – the City facilitates its own community engagement and statutory consultation period regardless of what a developer may undertake before they submit an application.
There is uncertainty about time frames – how long till the community can understand what the future is for the area?
Nobody likes uncertainty and the planning processes are quite lengthy. A really important reason they are long is to allow for proper consultation and considered decision making. The future of an area is not a matter to be rushed.

Some broad guidance on timeframes can be found in the planning processes information sheet.
Where to find further information
Eastcourt has set up an online engagement and consultation platform which is currently the central information and contact point for all engagement and information on the project, including the Concept Plan released to the Community on 28 April 2021.

Visit www.HaveYourSayGlenIrisEstate.com.au

Eastcourt have employed Acumen Development Solutions as their Development Manager. Enquiries may be directed to their Community Engagement liaison, Louise Richardson via email or telephone (08) 6115 6365, 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday.

Enquiries about the planning process can be directed to the City’s Strategic Planning team on 9411 3444.
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