All clear for Collison

Collison Estate residents agitating for subdivision rights in February. 135033_01 Picture: STEWART CHAMBERS


RESIDENTS at a Cranbourne East residential estate have been spared a mooted $1 million-plus council planning bill to pave the way for them to subdivide their land.
For many years, Collison Estate’s residents have been divided over whether further urban development should be allowed in the semi-rural locale.
Cr Amanda Stapledon said she was confident Casey Council had at last found a “way forward” to the impasse.
“It is a win-win for everyone, which will allow people to develop while others don’t have to.
“And there won’t be a big impost to the residents or a big impost to the council.”
The possible solution is to rezone the estate – which is within the urban growth boundary – as general residential, with up to three development plan overlays.
This would give residents the choice of whether to subdivide or not, or to opt into being connected to mains water and sewerage services.
It would also shelve the council’s proposed Precinct Structure Plan (PSP) for the estate, which would cost the council $1 million plus in upfront planning costs.
The council was set to possibly bill upfront the estate’s landowners – if they were “willing or able” – at least $10,600 each.
Ms Stapledon said a minority of the estate’s residents were still against development but the council “got to the point it had to do something”.
“We shouldn’t be prescribing how people in Collison estate live.
“We should be giving them the opportunity to do it or not do it – it’s important they get to choose.”
Cr Stapledon said the planning changes could take up to 18 months, about half the time of a PSP.
Cr Gary Rowe said the “only way forward” was for a group of residents to partner a developer.
“It comes down to the costs of development and when it will be viable.
“It will be the market that determines when it is developed, which is as it should be.”
Graham Smith, who has lived in the estate since 1992, said residents long sought the right for subdivisions of up to 12 lots.
He said councillors had passed four resolutions for a PSP which had not been acted upon by council officers.
He described the latest solution as “a really good outcome – provided it’s not a way of delaying things”.
“I just want the options available to us in the future.”