Save Mount Piper and Jeffreys Lane Broadford from housing development

Save Mount Piper and Jeffreys Lane Broadford from housing development

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Narelle Ayson started this petition to Mitchell Shire Council

Mitchell Shire Council released their Draft Broadford Structure Plan for public comment in August 2020 (available here: https://engagingmitchellshire.com/broadford3658/widgets/206250/documents which includes a proposal for a high-density housing estate on the southern fringe of Broadford township, bordered by Mount Piper Conservation Reserve, Jeffreys Lane and Dry Creek.

We, the residents, ratepayers and visitors of Mitchell Shire, wish to object to the scale, density and location of the proposed residential development (as outlined on pages 26-29 of the draft Broadford Structure Plan), for the following reasons:

  1. The proposed development is not in keeping with our rural landscape and country town feel of Broadford. We are a rural community which has a natural beauty that should be preserved and enjoyed.
  2. Such high-density development will have a negative impact on the rural farming environment and will leave a visible scar on Broadford’s beautiful natural landscape.
  3. The draft plan doesn’t adequately address the concerns of the greater Broadford community with regards to preserving threatened indigenous flora and fauna, especially near Mount Piper, nor preserving biodiversity, including tree retention and creating environmental corridors for wildlife movement.
  4. Many of the affected residents are responsibly farming the land contained in the proposal, with a view to conserving its natural beauty, biodiversity and regenerating the land/soil and indigenous vegetation, not clearing it for concrete and bricks.
  5. The proposed area for development is grossly over-sized, with an anticipated 4,000 new homes equating to ~12,000 new residents. Mitchell Shire Council have stated [Ref. 1&2] that the current Broadford population of ~5,000 is expected to double in the next two decades, and yet the plan proposes a total of 17,000 Broadford residents by 2041. We simply don’t want this!
  6. The proposal states “more generous lot sizes” but the average block size in the proposed development is 660sqm for General Residential Zone and 1,000sqm (quarter acre) for Low Density Residential Zone. This is NOT generous nor sympathetic to the rural landscape! We should have rural properties with acreage on the outskirts of Broadford. Urban sprawl should be kept in urban or suburban areas, within the Urban Growth boundary.
  7. The proposed high-density development would increase the incidence of litter, dumped rubbish and vandalism to the local area, which can already be seen as a result of other high-density housing estates within Mitchell Shire.
  8. The draft plan does not propose nor promote environmentally sustainable design of houses (inc. solar panels, north-facing living areas and rainwater capture) within the development precinct.
  9. Any residential development should be nearer to the town centre (e.g. as a continuation of First Street to the west of Dry Creek), thus eliminating a very long main street with reduced travel speeds over several kilometres and hence, longer travel times for residents.

Many people enjoy Broadford for its magnificent ever-changing landscapes, rolling hills and natural, relaxed, rural character. If you wish to keep it that way, please contact the Mitchell Shire Councillors and let them know your concerns: councillors@mitchellshire.vic.gov.au

If you’re interested to learn more, some preferred outcomes are outlined following the references below.

Thanks for your support.

References:
1 Broadford Structure Plan Stage 2 Information Sheet, August 2020, p2: “The Structure Plan is based on doubling the Broadford population to 10,000 residents by 2040.”

2 Draft Broadford Structure Plan, August 2020, p9: “Based on historic growth, existing population demographics, and a range of other factors Forecast ID projects an additional 2,124 residents between 2019 to 2041 (97 per annum), which would lead to an estimated 7,101 residents by 2041.”

In response to the draft Broadford Structure Plan, some of our desired outcomes would be:

  1. That there’s no development within a 500m buffer of the Mount Piper Conservation Reserve.
  2. That the farming properties along Jeffreys Lane be left out of this proposal, unless they actively want to be included.
  3. That any high-density housing be set low in the landscape and relatively hidden from view.
  4. That any development between Broadford-Kilmore Road and Mount Piper be zoned Rural Living or Low Density Residential (unless hidden from view).
  5. That any development be sympathetic to the landscape, i.e. rural living and not high-density suburban.
  6. That the local biodiversity be preserved by Mitchell Shire Council and further protected from developers over-writing Mitchell Shire Council’s plans.
  7. That local access streets, at a minimum, allow for two cars to pass whilst cars are parked on both sides of the road.
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