Formal request to initiate a scheme amendment
On 15 October 2021, the City formally receipted a proposal from Eastcourt Property Group to initiate an amendment to the City of Cockburn Town Planning Scheme No. 3
to rezone the former Glen Iris golf course land and develop it primarily for residential purposes.
City officers have assessed this proposal and a report was presented to the Ordinary Council Meeting on 9 December 2021.
At this meeting, Council voted to initiate the scheme amendment process.
It is important to note - this does not mean rezoning is approved or that the rezoning is supported by Council. It is the first step in a series of steps which will include the opportunity for all residents to have their say on the proposal.
On 10 March 2022, the Western Australian Planning Commission (WAPC) confirmed the suitability of the scheme amendment documentation for advertising and granted consent for the City to receipt a Structure Plan over the land for the purposes of proper and orderly planning.
As this is a significant proposal, the WAPC also accepted the City’s request to extend the Structure Plan advertising period to 60 days and align it with the Scheme Amendment so both proposals could be considered by the Community and City at the same time.
On 20 April the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) determined that the likely environmental impacts associated with the development are unlikely to have a significant impact on the environment and do not warrant formal assessment under Part IV Division 3 of the Environmental Protection Act 1986.
At the same time the EPA provided advice that (in part) recommended the inclusion of an additional scheme provision specific to Development Area No.45, to ensure subsequent structure planning and development suitably addresses the protection of black cockatoo habitat. The wording of that additional provision has subsequently been agreed upon with the WAPC and inserted into the scheme amendment documentation that will be released for comment.
Below is an overview of the processes that are followed for scheme amendments and structure plans, what the primary considerations are, what the City’s role is and who the decision makers are, as well as other relevant information.
The flow charts below provide a high-level overview of the process the City follows when it receives a formal request to amend its town planning scheme and / or receives a structure plan.
‘Complex’ Scheme Amendment Process
Scheme amendments typically involve changing the zoning of land and/or adjusting high-level development standards that apply to specific land.
In this instance, if the amendment is initiated, the City considers this proposal to fall into the ‘complex’ stream, due to the redevelopment not being foreshadowed in the City’s current or draft Local Planning Strategies, its overall scale, and its potential for impact on the broader locality.
The above flow chart provides a simplified version of the ‘complex’ amendment stream process. View the Department of Planning and Development’s more detailed process flowchart for complex amendments to local planning schemes
Complex Scheme Amendment Considerations
Below are some of the key matters the City takes into consideration when assessing a Scheme Amendment proposal, including a examples of matters that may not be considered.
View a more detailed explanation of what a scheme amendment is scheme amendment (rezoning process)
and links to the City’s Town Planning Scheme No. 3.
Structure Planning Process
Where enabled by an appropriate zone, a Structure Plan may be prepared for WAPC determination. A Structure Plan outlines the broad development layout, including land use, residential densities, key roads and public open space (as informed by detailed technical studies).
The above flow chart provides a simplified version of the structure plan process. View the Department of Planning and Development’s more detailed process Local planning scheme Structure Plans flowchart opens in a new window
Click here to view a more detailed explanation of the Structure Plan Framework and process
including links to the State Government Planning and Development (Local Planning Schemes) Regulations 2015
and the WAPC’s Structure Plan Framework.
Structure Planning Considerations
Below are some of the key matters the City takes into consideration when assessing Structure Plans.
Advertising – public comment period
The 60-day advertising period for both proposals will commence on Thursday 26th
May, running through to Monday 25th
Full copies of both proposals are available for inspection at City’s Administration office, the Spearwood Library, and Success Library during normal opening hours, or on the City’s website https://comment.cockburn.wa.gov.au/ opens in a new window
under ‘current consultations’.
Please note, advertising of proposals does not indicate formal support by either the City of Cockburn or the Western Australian Planning Commission.
When initiating the Scheme Amendment, Council also resolved to undertake a ‘Community Forum’ as an additional component to its statutory advertising requirements.
The City appointed independent facilitators Cannings Purple to conduct an online forum on 14 June 2022. View the video recording opens in a new window
The forum included:
- a high-level overview of the proposal;
- the statutory planning processes involved; and
- advice on where to best source information to consider and provide feedback on the proposal.
Comments must be submitted in writing, addressed to Chief Executive Officer, City of Cockburn, on or before 4:00pm on 25 July 2022, via one of the following means:
Mail: PO Box 1215 Email: [email protected]
Bibra Lake DC WA 6965 Online: https://comment.cockburn.wa.gov.au/
Please be aware that Council requires a Schedule of Submissions to be prepared which includes a submitters name and address. This forms part of a Council Agenda report, which will be available for public viewing (published in hard copy and on the City’s website). Please clearly state in your submission if you want your details to be kept confidential in the Council Report.
All submissions received during this period will be considered by Council prior to a final recommendation on both proposals being adopted and forwarded to the WAPC.
The WAPC will then review both proposals (including the content of submissions), before:
- seeking Minister for Planning determination of the enabling scheme amendment;
- before then, determining the underlying Structure Plan.
It’s important to note that as the final decision makers, the Minister and WAPC (respectively), must consider, but are in no-way bound to determine either application in accordance with the City’s recommendation.
How do I find out more information?
Enquiries about the planning process can be directed to the City’s Strategic Planning team on 9411 3444 or via [email protected]
More detailed information is also available in the FAQ below.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
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.Seeking commitment from Elected Members to not support rezoning/redevelopment
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.
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.Do they have to use the land for something?
NoWho is the decision maker?
Scheme amendments: Minister for PlanningWill there still be government-led consultation?
Structure plans: WA Planning Commission
Subdivision: WA Planning Commission
Yes – for proposals of this nature the City is required to undertake its own community engagement process regardless of what a developer may undertake before they submit an application.What role does the City and Council take in the redevelopment process?
If the scheme amendment is initiated, the City will seek WA Planning Commision approval to advertise the more detailed structure plan proposal at the same time (and for the same time period – 60 days) as the ‘complex’ scheme amendment.
The City plays an important role in initial processing of both the scheme amendment and structure plan processes, and will make recommendations as to how they are determined, but is not the ultimate decision maker (for either process).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.Traffic/access concerns
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.
A key component of the draft Structure Plan proposal is the introduction of a new traffic light controlled intersection onto Berrigan Drive. In concert with proposed adjustments to the existing intersections of The Lakes Boulevard and Turnbury Park Drive, this may result in improved traffic flows along Berrigan Drive to the benefit of the broader community.Clearing bush/vegetation/wildlife concerns Including draining lakes)
Both the Scheme Amendment and draft Structure Plan proposals are accompanied by an Environmental Assessment Report and Management Statement specifically addressing the various environmental issues relating to potential redevelopment. This information will be made available to the public should the proposals proceed to public advertisement.What powers do the City have to make sure the property doesn’t become an ‘eyesore’?
As an interim measure, following Department Biodiversity Conservation and Attractions (DBCA) approval to relocate resident turtles to an approved location, most of the lakes on-site were drained in July 2020. This was determined to be the best outcome given they were residing in a private dam on the closed golf course.
There are no provisions in any Act which the local government can use to force landowners to keep their property well-manicured and irrigated.Can the City force the new landowner to keep using it as a golf course?
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.
The land will continue to be inspected each year (in November/ Dec) by the City’s Fire Officer to ensure compliance with their fire management obligations. If there is a build-up of grass, the City can initiate a Works Order on the owner to ensure the grass is mown (or any other fire safety risk is removed).
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.Can the City ensure fire breaks are provided?
The landowner must continue to meet their fire management obligations however, which will require the grass being mown during summer to an acceptable height.
A firebreak variation has been approved by the City.How could redevelopment affect the price of my home?
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.
If this is a concern, you should seek the opinion of a licenced property valuer.What is the status of the developer-run Community Reference Group and workshops?
Importantly, whilst the value of property can be an important consideration for home owners, it is not a valid ‘planning consideration’ that the local government is permitted to consider in its assessment of a proposal.
Whilst seen as a positive engagement strategy, the City had no direct involvement with this initiative, including its membership structure or final outcome. There is uncertainty about time frames – how long till the community can understand what the future is for the area?
The process gave the local community an opportunity to contribute towards preparation of the draft proposals, but play no part in the statutory planning processes.
The Reference Group and its outputs will not be considered as representative of the local community’s views, and in accordance with the requirements of the Planning and Development Act (Local Planning Scheme) Regulations 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.
Nobody likes uncertainty and the planning processes involved are quite lengthy. An important reason why they are long is to allow for proper consultation and considered decision making. The future redevelopment of an area is not a matter to be rushed.
Some broad guidance on timeframes can be found in the planning processes information sheet