GREATER Bendigo council has voted to move the city’s residential limits to accommodate the region’s largest-ever subdivision.
Council this week agreed to ask Planning Minister Matthew Guy to authorise a rezoning exhibition process for a 1400-house subdivision at Maiden Gully.
The rezoning will see Bendigo’s Urban Growth Boundary extended, and could pave the way for an extension of Bendigo’s residential limits.
Birchgrove Property is behind the 183-hectare Forest Park Estate, at 244 Edwards Road.
The development includes “medium density” and “compact” properties and features a series of walking and bike paths.
It also abuts bushland, and council has identified any potential fire risk as an important part of the approval process.
The report to council was favourable towards the plan, despite the fact the land is not identified for future development within the council’s Residential Development Strategy.
“The site presents an opportunity to provide for additional housing in an area which is able to be fully serviced and is contiguous with existing residential development,” the report said.
“The land has few physical constraints to development, is in single ownership and is largely cleared of significant vegetation. Overall, the site is a logical inclusion within the Urban Growth Boundary.”
Birchgrove Property spokesman Damien Tangey said the development would have a significant impact on the local economy.
He said direct onsite investment is estimated to be more than $500 million. The project would employ about 150 people a year during its estimated 10-year construction phase.
“Up until completion in 2030, assessors have projected an $800 million injection into Bendigo’s gross regional product as a direct result of Forest Park,” he said.
“In terms of economic stimulus Forest Park’s flow-on effect will complement Bendigo’s new hospital development – as both projects significantly enhance the long-term economic prospects of our community.”
Mr Tangey said this exhibition process would provide Maiden Gully’s community with an opportunity to see how Forest Park will develop“Our proposal adopts a very transparent and thorough process,” he said.
“It’s been reviewed by council officers and referral authorities, and is now going before council to determine if it is to be recommended for public exhibition.
“Following a process of community consultation, the newly-elected council will be involved in determining the future of Forest Park.“Community input is vital in order for the proposal to respond effectively to local needs.”