Planning application at 126 Union Road Surrey Hills VIC 3127

R O'Donnell sent a message to Jim Parke.

Jim Parke
R O'Donnell
Planning application at 126 Union Road Surrey Hills VIC 3127
April 29, 2018, 4:44 a.m.
The proposal to locate a self cleaning public toilet on the nature strip in Croydon road is generating much angst for local residents who are deeply concerned this is even being considered by Boroondara Council.

Unfortunately I wasn't able to attend the public consultation yesterday where it was (apparently) mentioned that 48 traders & residents have petitioned Boroondara Council for a public toilet in Surrey Hills Village. What could possibly be their justification when we already have public toilets at the train station, neighbourhood centre and those provided by local cafes & restaurants? I understand "operating hours" for the proposed public toilet are still being determined. This makes even less sense.

I'm opposed to another public toilet in Surrey Hills Village and was glad when it didn't form part of the final plan for the COLES development. I've also been highly cynical of the official reason for the removal of the mature oak tree in Croydon road - it's just been too convenient for the adjacent COLES development. But never did I imagine these two issues would become connected.

I'm interested to know whether Croydon road would've been considered the most suitable location for a public toilet if the oak tree was still standing? COLES were required to retain and build around the heritage art deco wall yet it's apparently okay to put a public toilet in front of it? An architecturally designed public toilet - however sympathetic to its setting - won't disguise the fact it's a toilet as it would defeat its purpose to do so. Have those responsible for this proposal sought to views of those responsible for preserving Boroondara's heritage?

At the VCAT hearing which approved the COLES supermarket, there was considerable attention given to the impact on pedestrian & vehicular safety from blocking sight lines in the vicinity of the COLES car park exit. Concerned residents funded an independent traffic report which identified this issue. Boroondara Council say they'll now consider shifting the public toilet closer to the intersection with Union road to mitigate against its risk to public safety. Do you think this is good enough for what will become a much busier intersection when COLES is operational? A public toilet at this location is discretionary and there's no need to compromise public safety. And what will be the impact on the mature tree on this corner - will it too suffer the same fate as its neighbouring mature pin oak tree, for "safety" reasons?

Since Boroondara Council are effectively sanctioning public toilets in residential streets with this proposal - something I am vehemently opposed to - why was Guildford road dismissed as the preferred option? It's nature strip is just as wide and there's no heritage art deco wall to contend with at this location?

I'm unaware of any self cleaning public toilet in Boroondara that's located on the nature strip of a residential street. They are located either within or adjacent to a car park. If another public toilet is deemed necessary, what's preventing it being located in either the station car park or the council-owned car park behind the neighbourhood centre? Is it beyond the wit of Boroondara Council to negotiate with VicTrack? Alternatively, rather than reducing the usable space in the neighbourhood centre courtyard with more planting, why not set aside some of this space for an architecturally designed public toilet?

For a mature oak tree in a residential street to be been felled and Boroondara Council propose it be replaced with a public toilet is a disgrace. Why shouldn't I conclude that residents are being stitched up at the behest of vested interests?

I urge Boroondara Council to abandon this proposal.

From R O'Donnell to local councillor Jim Parke


R O'Donnell posted this message to you on PlanningAlerts in response to the following planning application.

Your reply, and any other response to this email, will be sent to R O'Donnell and posted on the PlanningAlerts website publicly.

Planning Application for 126 Union Road Surrey Hills VIC 3127

Description: Post RequestBuildings and works to construct a supermarket (including a fence, awning and road works) pursuant to Clauses 34.01-4, 43.01-1, 43.02-2 and 44.05-1; Externally alter a building; and full and partial demolition of the existing buildings.

Read more and see what others have to say here:

Best wishes,

Jim Parke
April 30, 2018, 6:50 a.m.
Thank you for your email.

I am responding on behalf of the Mayor, Cr Jim Parke to acknowledge receipt of your email and advise your comments have been noted by the Mayor.

The Mayor has asked me to register your email within our corporate system following which it will be sent to the relevant Manager for the appropriate action.


Tula Sahinidis
Secretary to Mayor and Councillors

8 Inglesby Rd, Camberwell, 3124
(03) 9278 4457

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