Government rejects plan for senior units on golf course

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A plan to put 95 seniors living units on a stretch of Bayview golf course has been rejected by the Sydney North Planning Panel, which cited environmental and legal reasons.

On Tuesday night the independent panel took into consideration council planning laws and resident concerns in knocking back the $84 million Waterbrook Bayview development.

It would have taken up 2ha of the course, between 1825 Pittwater Rd and 52 Cabbage Tree Rd.

An artist’s impression of the rejected Bayview Waterbrook plan.

In its decision the panel noted that there was a site compatibility certificate (SCC) allowing ‘95 infill self care units and ancillary facilities’ on the site, however it questioned the permissibility of the certificate.

An SCC can be awarded to allow seniors housing next to urban or rural land. But the panel questioned whether the environmentally sensitive land surrounding it could be classed as urban.

The judgment said the SCC “clearly requires the resolution of issues relating to form, height, bulk, scale, setbacks and landscaping, flood risk, carparking, access and potential ecology impacts”.

Northern Beaches Council put forward a submission against the plans, which the panel gave strong consideration to. The panel expressed concerns over the “proposed typology, scale, height, footprint and density” of the plans.

“The form of the proposed buildings, their length, height and basement parking produce a built form which is incompatible with the existing and desired future character of the area

“The visual impact of the proposed buildings when viewed from neighbouring properties and the golf course itself is incongruous to the existing low scale and recreational character of the area.”

The panel also pointed to concerns that the “development will have a substantial adverse impact on the biodiversity of the site and area”.

Bayview Golf Club was called, but has not yet responded.

The panel deferred a decision last Wednesday to allow more time for deliberation and consideration of new evidence.

A further deferral was considered to allow the developer to amend the plans by reducing the building’s heights and to get independent legal advice on the permissibility of the SCC. But a majority of the five-person panel concluded “that design modifications required to satisfy (the council’s planning codes) were too significant”.

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