You need to be signed in to add your comment.

Do you have any comments about the Draft Voluntary Planning Agreement Policy?

by Willoughby Admin, over 6 years ago

This consultation has concluded.

  • Willoughby Admin over 6 years ago
    Council is seeking submissions about the Draft Voluntary Planning Agreement Policy 2013. You can view the policy and associated documents in the library section of this website: The Draft Policy and supporting information may also be viewed at Level 4 of Council’s Administration building at 31 Victor Street, Chatswood from 8:30am - 5:00pm Monday to Friday. Comments can also be sent to or posted to PO Box 57, Chatswood NSW 2057 by Wednesday 30 October. All enquiries should be directed to Strategic Planner, Craig O’Brien, on 9777 7647.Thanks for taking the time to have your say.
    • 123degrees over 6 years ago
      I am interested in the community having a say in what is built around them and some tangible benefits for the immediate neighbours and the broader community. I would like to see strict guidelines in place to protect the environment both natural and community. Things like over shadowing, noise and access to open space are crucial to the health of the community. I have endured a year of constant noise from the Kiah development some days from 7am till 5pm and it would have been great to know before it started that there would be some benefits to me for example are there going to be lights there to help me cross, will there be some public open space I can access are the buildings lean and green so as not to put more pressure on the environment If you know these things in advance it can help you endure the seemingly endless noise and dust.
  • Lynn over 6 years ago
    I am concerned that developers should not be given too much latitude when it comes to building high rise units in peaceful residential areas. Overshadowing, overlooking, increased traffic and noise are untenable as we are already a busy community - we need more green space, continuous footpaths for pedestrians, bike tracks so that riders do not use the footpaths. Perhaps developers could contribute towards an updated Leisure Centre instead of building pools within their complexes.
  • chrisw over 6 years ago
    The voluntary planning agreement policy is a disgrace.There has to be a development control plan that the community approves of, and then that plan must be adhered to.If the community does not want tall buildings in an area then this should be respected.The developer will ALWAYS attempt to maximise the building heights and size of developments to maximise profit. There is no other motivation. It is not to benefit the community.Having voluntary planning agreements is like the federal government favouring one company over another company and over individual taxpayers and saying it can pay less tax if it were to build an office building for them.Or the tobacco companies getting a reduction in duty or being allowed to return to coloured packaging if they funded the lung cancer ward in the hospital.Or the beer producers being allowed to sell beer to teenagers because they fund a healthy drinking education campaign in schools.Such agreements will always lead to corruption, deception and inconsistent decisions, because the rules are open to interpretation and can be twisted and manipulated for the developer or the corrupted councillor to argue his case.The individual councillor could be bribed to vote a certain way and always argue that he believed that it was in the community interests because the developer provided a token community room. And that councillor could hide behind the “agreement”.Why is the exceeding of building height restrictions ALWAYS the main breach of a developer’s plan? Because it knows it is what the community does NOT want. If council wants to have taller buildings, draft a new development control plan and have a council election/ referendum to allow the community to vote on this. That would be democracy.Having the voluntary planning agreement policy means that the most profitable developer that stands to make the biggest profit by building the tallest building that breaks the most regulations, will be the one that succeeds because he is the one that is willing to pay the biggest bribe? What kind of council policy is that? What kind of governing, governance and accountability is that? Why is council so weak? Has it been wasteful with the millions of council rates collected? It is as if Willoughby council is part of a 3rd world economy.I am sure property owners prefer to pay higher council rates (which they should as property prices in Chatswood have risen consistently), rather than allow developers to control a financially struggling council so eager to please developers and so eager to be manipulated.The voluntary planning agreement is a mockery of a planning regulation or policy. It is a disgrace to call it a “regulation” or a “policy”, because it is not one. It is decision-making based on what the developer wants, and not what the community wants. The community should decide what it wants and council can decide what it wants, and then put it up for tender. Developers can then decide how they wish to provide that community benefit item, and tender for it.