14 Cosgrove Avenue, Keiraville NSW 2500

Residential - multi dwelling housing development comprising the construction of five (5) buildings with a total of 47 dwellings, 109 car parking spaces, associated earthworks, tree removal, internal accessway, landscaping, APZs, stormwater drainage, substation and Subdivision - Strata title

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We found this application for you on the planning authority's website 8 months ago. It was received by them 19 days earlier.

(Source: Wollongong City Council, reference DA-2020/4)

15 Comments

Have your say by adding your own comment.

  1. Karen Wyatt commented

    I strongly oppose this development!
    It is out of character, utterly barbaric and lacks complete common sense.
    The front of the properties access is a single driveway and is on an extremely narrow road that already has parking congestion from the University. Building 47 units will undeniably cause major traffic problems.
    Surrounding properties are low density residential homes, with narrow roads. This development is oversized for the location and is not in keeping with the surrounding infrastructure.
    The size of this proposed development will not only negatively impact the area regarding traffic flow and aesthetic appeal but also could potentially become a tinder box for fires from the escarpment.
    I am also extremely concerned about the natural environmental impact the building works will have on the flora and fauna. I believe that as a society we are obligated to preserving as many trees and wildlife as possible, particularly as we have lost so much during this seasons catastrophic fires.
    The council has the power to do the right thing for the community of Keiraville by opposing this monstrosity. We need to know that council is listening to our pleas and shows insight into how this will impact the environment and the residents that currently reside in the area.
    Thank you for your time and hopefully we can gain the support from the council by unanimously rejecting this development and inevitably retaining the unique beauty of Keiraville.

  2. Kristy Robaard commented

    I strongly oppose this development!
    1. It's going to change the natural habitat of our environment. Mount Keira is a site of significant cultural heritage for the Wodi Wodi people and is well known for our natural escarpment all of which is sacred land to the Wodi Wodi people of the wider Dharawal language group. Mount Keira is known for its distinctive shape and proximity and is a major local landmark. Please don't destroy this and allow this oversized development. Lots of trees will need to be pulled down and everyone is worried about climate change. Doing this overscale development is not keeping with the small community feel that Keiraville is known for and something we as residents, want to keep.
    2. With so many bushfires happening at the moment, we need to stop building further up the mountain as it makes it even harder for the fire brigades to protect us. At the moment they have that access. In the 1990's there were fires that burned through where Cato Place in Keiraville now exists. Our city is not invincible to fires. Please don't make it harder for our fireman to protect us.
    3. The gradient of the driveway is very steep and cars would really have to accelerate to get up the driveway which would add extra noise pollution to that area that doesn't currently exist and would be terrible for the neighbours either side. At night, cars would be accessing the driveway and their headlights would be blinding for houses all around that driveway.
    4. Where are all the bins going to be left. Cosgrove Avenue and the streets surrounding aren't very wide and 94 bins will need to be collected every week.
    5. Lots of houses are already having trouble with their drainage. Where is all the water going to go without causing further problems to what is already a huge existing issue?
    6. The streets are all narrow surrounding Cosgrove Avenue and is always busy with cars parked from the university. This area was not built for this kind of development joined with existing traffic which all leads out to Robsons Road causing extra congestion including traffic from the university. Where will the 47 units visitors park? Why not add extra cars to the non existent parking already?
    7. I'm worried about the flora, fauna and wildlife. So many animals have been killed in the bushfires already. We don't need to add to this.
    8. I live near Cato Place. Since it has been built, there has been so much extra traffic flying up and down our street that didn't happen till that was built. There has been cars that have been booked but nothing has changed. If this oversized development goes ahead I believe that the surrounding will undoubtedly have the same problem that we have.

  3. Andrew Reveley commented

    I am writing to object to the proposed development at 14 Cosgrove Avenue, Keiraville NSW 2500.
    I am surprised the planning officers would even allow someone to spend their money in applying for such a ridiculous development.
    This is a bush block with one building area approved many years ago for a single large residence.
    Nothing has changed. The same issues apply now as they did when Cleary Brothers owned it.
    In fact building approval should be even more stringent.
    This is a bush fire prone area and as such this application should be rejected.
    Any development needs to manage storm water runoff as previously identified. This involves significant work installing sumps etc. under the road in Cosgrove Avenue, Andrews Avenue and Georgina Avenue.
    How on earth can the small suburban roads handle another 109 cars? I am amazed that Council Officers even allowed the developer to submit such a ridiculous proposal.
    Are we sliding back into the old dodgy planning decision days of the past that Wollongong is infamous for?
    My property adjoins this block and my family moved into it because of the quiet location and proximity to the natural bush. The development would greatly impact our lifestyle and our property value.
    Please do not allow this development to proceed in any way. Assuming this is an ambit proposal I expect the developer will try to submit a smaller revised plan.
    Please remind the developers this is only approved for one large residential dwelling.

  4. Paul Roe commented

    I agree with all the previous comments. Since when did the zoning change for this property? How does a zoning for low density single dwelling transform into 47 units with 109 car parks? This is outrageous, the traffic management or lack of should be enough alone for this to be denied. This is just completely out of character for an area of single family homes. As a child I spent a lot of time up that hill, so emotionally I don’t want to see such a development that will destroy the natural surrounds, destroy the outer escarpment and destroy the neighborhood that I grew up in and my elderly parents still live. A Chinese consortium has no right to buy the council and have whatever they want approved. I hope common sense prevails but I won’t hold my breath as we are dealing with Wollongong City Council. Just look at what they have done to Flinders st and all over the city with excessive high rise and all the problems that go with them. Disgusting.

  5. Stephanie Roe commented

    It absolutely beggars belief that WCC is even contemplating this shocking development. Everything about this is wrong: bushfire risk, traffic increase and loss of amenity for the residents in the surrounding streets.
    I thought the recent clean-out of the WCC was supposed to have fixed the corruption evident. Clearly I was wrong. At what point can any reasonable, rational person think that allowing 109 additional cars and 47 units onto a steep block of bushland in an area of high bushfire risk to be a good idea?
    You do not need to have a degree in town planning to see the lack of sensibility on display here.
    If WCC allows this development to go ahead, then be warned - you obviously have completely underestimated the tsunami of anger from the locals who will be significantly, negatively affected by this dreadful proposal.

  6. David Winton commented

    Dear Council
    As a neighbor to this proposal I fiercely oppose this development for the following reasons:
    It will destroy invaluable open space and tree cover.
    It will change for the worse the low density single dwelling per lot character of our village.
    It will add to the horrendous traffic and parking congestion which I largely attribute to the university.
    It will exacerbate the strain on infrastructure, my street already suffers ie low water pressure, storm water flooding and dangerous traffic congestion
    I fear a lack of objectivity from approving authorities as this development will massively increase the rate-able value of the land.
    It will decrease the amenity neighboring property and decrease its value
    It runs the risk of becoming a ghetto, where uncontrolled private rental practices run rife ie subletting, squatting etc all at odds with the family character of our neighborhood
    I would like to know why earlier single dwelling applications did not progress.

  7. Brian Hood commented

    Dear Greg Doyle, GM Wollongong Council,
    This development must be opposed. The application fails on multiple grounds:
    1. Site access is extraordinarily limited. Single driveway with a very steep gradient making emergency evacuation / access near on impossible
    2. Clearing of over 250 mature trees from the escarpment. Developments like this need to considered for in-fill in existing suburbs. Sprawl through virgin bushland really should be considered a last resort for urban planning in the modern era
    3. Proximity to bushland and bushfire risk. Why would we voluntarily approve 47 houses in the path of such a destructive force which will, inevitably, affect these unfortunate residents?
    4. Density. The residents of Keiraville are fiercely proud of our village. This development is grossly disproportionate to the character of the street, the surrounds and the suburb.
    5. Waste. By my calculation, 47 units will require 141 individual bins. Where will these bins be stored? How will they be collected? If not individual bins, then 660L or larger bins will require specialised rubbish trucks which will not be able to get up and down the single access, and steep driveway.
    6. Parking. Cosgrove, Georgina, Robsons, Gipps, Northfields are all completely and utterly full. Residents are unable to enjoy the same parking privileges as most other residents of comparable suburbs (i.e. simply parking on the street in front of their own house) because of the University. The Developer is unfortunately deluded if he thinks 109 car spaces will be adequate.

    Summary: Large scale developments such as these must be considered as part of a broader urban planning policy within the Wollongong LGA. I would think a modern, progressive and environmentally aware planning process would dictate these type of large scale developments by considered as in-fill developments closer to city centres.
    Thank you for your consideration

  8. Amanda Cooper commented

    I wish to lodge comment on the development proposal for 14 Cosgrove Avenue Keiraville.

    With regard to Council's resolution in 2014 that the ten (10) vision statements for Keiraville and Gwynneville be endorsed, I feel that vision statements 4.1 (Keiraville and Gwynneville are villages), 4.3 (building styles reflect village character) and 4.8 (valuing the university while retaining our character, are not supported by the proposed devlopment.

    Specifically;
    1. 4.1- villages. I am concerned about the density of dwellings in this proposal. 47 individual dwellings located within 5 buildings, with an accompanying 109 car parking spaces, accessed by a single driveway is a high density proposal. I note that these dwellings are not within the immediate vicinity of the village shops, where housing development is higher than in other parts of the village. The density of existing dwellings in Cosgrove Avenue, and in surrounding streets, Is significantly lower than this proposal. Existing street widths are designed for the current density and traffic needs.

    2. 4.3 - building style reflects village character. 47 dwellings contained within 5 buildings, in my opinion, is not reflective of the village character, nor of the character of dwellings on this street and surrounding streets.

    3. 4.8 - value university but retain character. This proposed development appears to be attempting to take advantage of the university's student and staff population’s hunger for accommodation and to maximise a financial return on it, at the expense of the character of the existing Keiraville village, and without sympathy for the same. Given the nature of capitalism, I am concerned that allowing this precedant will then result in further degradation of the character of our village in our to satisfy this existing hunger, and compensate for the University’s failure to supply appropriate and affordable accommodation, infrastructure and transport across the region for their students.

    I also note that the removal of over 250 mature trees is not in keeping with the spirit of vision statement 4.9 (protect green spaces), which I find concerning given the rapid rate of climate change and global warming. In fact, given the events of the current fire season, and the fact only blind luck prevented the Illawarra escarpment from becoming another catastrophic fire ground, and the likelihood of the same luck not holding in future fire seasons, I am frankly astonished a development of this density, on the edge of this tract of bushland, is considered by anyone to be a wise proposition.

    Practical considerations such as waste disposal, storm water mitigation, traffic congestion, visitor parking, noise and light pollution are all obvious issues and I would hope don’t need to be laboured upon.

    It is also worth noting that this piece of land has never been considered appropriate for more than a single dwelling previously. Additionally, the gradient of the access has prevented even that single dwelling being built to date. I remember earthmoving equipment being unable to ascend the slope previously, and becoming stuck. This piece of land is wholly inappropriate for the proposed development in my opinion.

  9. Luisa Guo commented

    Dear General Manager,

    I'm writing this comment to oppose the proposed development at 14 Cosgrove Avenue as a Keiraville resident. I am super concerned about the size and scale of this development and its potential impacts on my current living quality and property value for the following reasons:

    1. Size and scale. It's such a compact development that is completely at odds with the surrounding community. What about its garbage removal ability? 47 new homes with 94 rubbish bins (red and green or yellow) lining on the street? that's lots of bins from one location. Do they have enough space for them?

    2. Traffic and parking. With 47 new households coming from one narrow outlet, this will add tremendous pressure on the existing parking and traffic problems we've got in Keiraville. When my neighbour rented out their house, instead of having 1 car, the 4 student tenants have 4 cars, 2 parking on the street. This will definitely happen on the new development considering its proximity to the University of Wollongong. As a result, we are not just facing traffic and parking challenge from 47 new households, it can be over 100-200 individual household depending on how many of them rented out to students.

    3. Bushfire and Climate Change: I noticed that this proposed development is literally on the edge of the Illawarra Escarpment. Do you have concerns about frequent devastating bushfires we just experienced over the last 6 months in light of a fast changing climate. I also noticed that there are lots of trees on the land, are the developers going to remove those trees to create more space? If that's the case, I would be very upset as our Keiraville is well known for its leafy environment.

    4. Keiraville property value and environment: People are willing to pay more to live in Keiraville simply because this is such a nice and peaceful suburb w/ the right amount of properties, people and public facilities. We definitely do not want it to become an overly-crowded messy suburb. We are welcome developments that are more in line with Keiraville vibes and make it a better place to live.

    I hope my concerns can be considered.

    Cheers!

  10. Glen Moore commented

    As a life member of Destination Wollongong, I appreciate the iconic value of Mt. Keira and the escarpment below it. Mt. Keira has tremendous economic value to the City and should be protected from encroachment such as this.

    Some years ago the land in question had substantial clearing, leaving bare soil. The scar was visible from across Wollongong and it was a relief when it greened again. We must protect this important piece of the escarpment.

    I am also very concerned about having such a large number of residences only serviced by a single driveway since this is a fire zone. The streets through which these new residents would travel are totally inadequate for the increased traffic.

    Flooding is a concern. My property, and that of my neighbors, was damaged in the floods of 1998. If there is increased stormwater flowing into the creeks adjoining the development there will be increased opportunity for a damaging repeat. It should also be remembered that this water eventually flows into Wollongong Botanic gardens where a diminished water quality is quite undesirable.

  11. Ruth Procter commented

    As a past resident in Georgina Ave I was shocked to learn of the above development application.

    Cosgrove Ave, being a cul de sac at the edge of the Illawarra Escarpment, is totally unsuitable for this project.
    1. The land in question is steep. Reality and past history tell us that it could be prone to slippage, extreme drainage problems for the properties below as far as the Botanic Gardens.
    2. The land is heavily wooded being on the escarpment so is truly in high fire prone zone.
    3. In case of any emergency imagine the chaos and difficulties getting into the cul de sac with one entrance/exit. Fire fighters would have serious difficulties reaching the properties.
    4. The structure of a large block of unattractive units stuck in the middle of the bush, is totally out of character with the area. A blot on the precious landscape.
    5. The problem of parking and number of extra vehicles in an already saturated parking area due to the University, has been grossly overlooked in this whole inappropriate fiasco.
    Yours very sincerely
    Ruth Procter

  12. Jesse Tulloch commented

    As a resident in Keiraville I strongly oppose this corrupt plan by the WCC.
    This block is steep with only one entry/exit point making emergency evacuation near impossible. Also firefighters would have a hard time getting up because of the one entry point.
    A I hike up there it would be devastating to see this area ruthlessly destroyed by some developer.
    Please listen to our pleas and stop this stupid project.

  13. Ursula Szafraniec commented

    As a former Keiraville resident whose child attends Keiraville PS, I strongly oppose this development proposal and am concerned about the negative impact it may have on residents, the local environment and local resources.
    Bushfire risk - The proposed development is located in the middle of a high risk bushfire area. In light of an already catastrophic fire season, this seems irresponsible and must be reconsidered.
    It also includes only one access point. In the case of a bushfire and evacuation, this single road would be the only way for a considerable amount of residents to drive out of the estate, all whilst emergency vehicles are trying to enter to fight the fires.
    Traffic and access - This proposal is in an area already overloaded with traffic and parking from students. Indeed, the entire Keiraville area struggles with current traffic and parking loads! The proposal doesn't make mention of the results from a recent Keiraville and Gwynville traffic study. These results must be considered.
    Also, a single access point to the estate is proposed, with a two-way street on one side and a one-way street on the other. This access point is meant to service approximately 109+ cars, in a suburb already saturated with traffic and parking.
    Environmental protection - The area of the proposed development was originally zoned as needing environmental protection for animal habitats and vegetation. This should not be ignored. In addition to this, the area would be aesthetically damaged beyond any repair and significantly harm Mt Keira’s natural landmark beauty. This is also part of an important landmark in our local Indigenous communities.

    Impact on current residents - It is expected that the development will be in construction for years. During this time there will be trucks, heavy machinery, traffic controls and everything else that comes with a significant development such as this. This will heavily impact current traffic and all nearby residents, particularly vulnerable pedestrians such as parents with prams and young children and the elderly. These pedestrians already struggle with the traffic on these roads, but would face further dangers and difficulties as a result of the construction. Whilst it may be argued this impact is only for a limited period of time, no benefit is evident from this proposed development which would offset the inconvenience and difficulties.
    Please listen to the community. Thank you for your consideration.

  14. Cherylyn Fenton commented

    I would like to register my dismay at the proposal. It clearly states in Our Wollongong 2028 Community Strategic Plan , p.24 Goal 1. "We value and protect our environment. 1.1.3 The potential impacts of natural disasters, such as those related to bushfires, flood and landslips are managed and risks reduced to protect life, property and the environment. " The property at 14 Cosgrove Avenue is already a known slip area and in a precarious position adjacent to the Illawarra Escarpment for bushfire. Attempts to put much smaller developments on that block have been rejected by Wollongong City Council in the past. This much larger development will put residents and their property in danger and create havoc in the cul de sac. The retention of soils and land stability in the area would benefit from retention and increase in vegetation rather than overdevelopment. I am bewildered as to how the majority of this block was ever zoned medium density and would question how and when this decision was made.
    Traffic in this area is very congested during times when The University is in session. The traffic study needed to be conducted during these times and not when exams are on or during breaks in sessions. I feel that any decision to permit this development will set a very dangerous precedent for large scale residential developments in areas adjacent to the escarpment or on private property that is in the designated escarpment.

  15. Irit Alony commented

    Dear Council, Thank you for protecting us residents from inappropriate overdevelopment in our area. This submission is a clear example of such overdevelopment, breaching concerns in the areas of geo-techincal feasibility, bush-fires risk, traffic and access, floods, environmental protection, community and amenities, and its unreasonable impact on local residents- not only during construction but also post completion.

    -Geotechnical issues
    The slope at the proposed area is extremely steep. In fact it is so steep that garbage collection trucks will not be able to access it. In addition, the geology of the land is a hard bedrock covered by slip-area quality soil. The area has had mud slides following rain periods over the last half of the century. Residents who spent their childhood here decades ago still recall occasions after rainy days when they would go to the proposed development area and slide down the muddy slope of the steep hill, enjoying the ride. It would require extreme reinforcement measures to make construction of the proposed scale viable and not to put at risk of considerable damage to themselves and the properties below (such as my home).

    -Bushfire risk
    The summer of 2019-2020 provided us with a loud and clear wakeup call. The proposed development is located in the middle of an area of high risk for bushfire, which were only avoided this time due to wind conditions. The proposal suggests building 47 housing units, which will house 150-200 people. In light of expected changes in climate which will only increase the risk of bushfires, this is irresponsible and must be reconsidered.
    Furthermore, as explained under ‘Traffic and access’ below, the proposed development relies on a single access point. In the case of a bushfire and evacuation, this single and narrow road would be the only way for estimated 110+ cars to drive out of the estate, and for the emergency vehicles to enter to fight the fires. This is a recipe for a disaster on a national, if not international, scale, and anyone who approves the project should be considered an accessory to any resulting loss.

    -Traffic and access
    All construction project MUST consider the results of council traffic studies. The proposal does not mention the results from a recent Keiraville and Gwynville traffic study, and it must consider them.
    A single access point to the estate is proposed, with a two-way street on one side of it and a one-way street on the either. This access point is meant to service an estimate of 110+ cars in a suburb already overloaded with traffic and parking of students attending the nearby university campus. There are no footpaths and due to parking cars, most people simply walk on the road itself. Adding heavy vehicles during construction, and traffic after completion, will greatly exacerbate the problem.

    -Floods
    The risk of floods resulting from this proposal was grossly (and possibly deliberately ) underestimated. The proposal relies on irrelevant rainfall data. First, the data is from 1987, and therefore does not consider floods which resulted from heavy rainfall occurrences in 1988 and the 1990s. Second, the data in the proposal considered rainfall at a distant Illawarra location (Port Kembla) which regularly receives less rainfall than that in the proposed development area. Heavy rainfall on the proposed development area would result in distribution of water above and beyond the capacity of current stormwater systems, and could result in flooding of properties not only near by but further down the catchment area.

    -Environmental protection
    This area was agreed by council as requiring environemtnal protection, and it is not clear why all of a sudden it is considered for medium density housing. The area of the proposed development was originally zoned as an area requiring environmental protection for animal habitats and vegetation. Furthermore, this area would be aesthetically damaged beyond any construction on the escarpment and significantly harm Mt Keira’s natural landmark beauty. The precedent of such damage would be devastating for the entire escarpment and inconsistent with Council's plan for it.

    -Community and amenities
    Little benefit, if at all, will result to existing residents from this development. The proposed development will effectively be a ‘gated community’, and its residents will only be able to drive in and out of their property due to the extreme incline that will restrict pedestrian access. It will not integrate its residents into Keiraville’s community, nor will it offer the estate’s residents any reasonable amenities. No public transport will be able to access the community, and no shops or community facilities were included in the proposal. It would possibly house students and having them so isolated from the rest of the community opens the door to many possible negative social and criminal outcomes.

    -Impact on current residents
    A development of such scale would be expected to take years to construct. During this time trucks, heavy machinery, traffic controls and construction access will impose heavy restrictions on the area and will impact current traffic and all nearby residents. This is particularly important for vulnerable pedestrians (parents with prams and young children, elderly, etc.) who currently often make up the pedestrian traffic at Keiraville would face danger and difficulties on a daily basis. No benefit resulting from this proposed development is evident which would offset the inconvenience, and therefore cannot be justified.

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