Building 25 Separation Street Northcote VIC 3070

A mixed-use development comprised of the: * Use of land for the purpose of Place of Assembly (Library) * Use of land for the sale of liquor * Construction of buildings and works comprised of six (6) buildings ranging in height between 4-28 storeys plus two (2) basement levels containing a Library, Retail Premises (nine (9) shops and a supermarket), an eight (8) storey Office building, 660 dwellings and associated car parking; * A reduction in the car parking requirement, as shown on the plans accompanying the application.

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We found this application for you on the planning authority's website 3 months ago. It was received by them 3 days earlier.

(Source: Darebin City Council, reference D/474/2020)

32 Comments

Have your say by adding your own comment.

  1. Magda Akkerman commented

    This is completely too large for the surrounding area and will overwhelm an already crowded area!

  2. Helen moss commented

    20 storeys is too high. Extra Car parking is needed Not reduced carparking. In the middle of a pandemic now is the time to think about How best to reduce The spread of disease - 29 storeys isn’t going to do this

  3. Claire Boyce commented

    A reduction in car parking for more development in the area is completely ridiculous.

    Already it is full. It will just become a place where people don't go because they can't park. The reason people take their cars when shopping is that they buy things which are bulky, heavy and too hard to carry home.

    There actually needs to be parking developed commesurate with the development.

  4. Charlie Kang commented

    Far too high and out of character for surrounding buildings. Will cast long shadows in the afternoon for houses to the east. Not enougj parking.

  5. Anne Gatt commented

    This development is out of character for the area, will overwhelm neighbouring residents, and will destroy the village feel of the area. The ‘Northcote Green’ development proposal states that it will create a social centre for Northcote - we already have that, a lovely community on High Street. The council should look at how hard the community fought against the development proposed on the Piedmonte’s site in Fitzroy North, and ask the developer to reconsider their plans. A smaller development footprint that fits the size of the existing plaza, a limit on the height of the building to the existing residential tower (which is already ridiculous), and no reduction in parking.

  6. Lara Finlayson commented

    Reduction in parking is completely inappropriate at a time when we are unfortunately using more cars and less public transport (which is likely to be ongoing thanks to covid-19)

  7. Robert Follis commented

    This development is outrageously large and way oversize for the area. 29 stories will tower over the area and is undoubtedly a developer joke, hoping the planners will say oh maybe 24 stories then! Just going to be more developer sky slums of the future! Max height should be related to surrounding buildings and no more.

    There should be NO reduced car parking. Lack of spaces sadly never ever stops people using cars, it just puts parked cars on all surrounding streets. This is just developer cheap-skating, mandate an on-site underground car park or no approval OR have a covenant for no car ownership.

  8. Katherine Palella commented

    I don't even know where to start with this? 29 stories? While I understand higher density living is necessary, this is extreme and out of character for the area. This density seems to reek of another another middle class slum of barely liveable apartments masquerading as a "community hub". Is there an appropriate infrastructure plan for roads and transport to keep up with this? Doubtful.

    Heavily reduced parking will not stop people from owning cars, instead it will force car owners in apartments to park on streets, reducing movement of visitors to the shopping centres and aid in a revenue raising activity for the council. This is 100% an example of punishing citizens for the benefit of developers and corporations under the guise of a green initiative that hobbles areas like this with hostile living conditions

  9. Karolinka Gruba commented

    Inappropriate for the area. We don’t need more high rise development.
    We need more green, open areas and space. Especially given the current and future infection concerns.
    Reducing car park space is a joke as the people using, visiting the site will
    Increase not decrease.
    Poor planning and future management on behalf of all involved

  10. Jennifer Nathan commented

    All Nations park is such an asset to the Northcote community to impose another multi-level accommodation on its fringe would ruin the amenity and overcrowd a popular recreation spot. This proposal exploits public facilities while appearing to contribute very little to the community.

  11. Stephen leah commented

    Disappointing to see so many negative comments about a woefully under used site. The Plaza is a Northcote icon in the best and worst ways. Let's be constructive instead of the usual NO NO NO. I remember Northcote / Thornbury 20 years ago and it was dead. Population expansion, demographic change and, yes, gentrification have all been (for the most part) good for the area that has evolved so much. Let's not kid ourselves that we live in a "village", we live in a thriving, independent metropolitan hub that maintains excellent transport links, access to no end of amenities and manages to retain its identity and community feel better than most. Of course the amenity of the park should be protected, the scale of the project proposed should be questioned and the quality of the planning and design outcomes should be high and well considered.

    Let's practice what we preach regarding wanting sustainable development outcomes and yes, often that means fewer cars, (we cannot ween ourselves off our car dependency if we constantly provide more) we cannot enjoy the benefits of population expansion and demographic change if we do not acknowledge that well connected and liveable suburbs need to evolve in a rapidly growing city. Northcote is well placed to do this and the plaza site in particular is well placed to do this because if not here then where, and the answer is not in my backyard.

    So please let's be constructive, by all means object but let's move beyond the predictable and outdated outrage regarding car parking numbers and ensure we get a well designed, sustainable and appropriately scaled development...

  12. Sandra Morris commented

    This development is too large. It will completely change the streetscape in this part of Darebin. Post COVID we will not need the density of housing like this so close to the city. We should be learning from COVID and thinking about the lessons for our recovery planning, this development must be considered in that light. Further reduction of parking will affect resident action to All Nations park and will also affect traders on High Street who are already reeling from COVID. If the Council is serious about maintaining the unique nature of High Street they need to oppose this development.

  13. Sue Burgess commented

    In a post-COVID world, this development is just completely inappropriate. More than ever, people are staying inside and when they go out, they are avoiding public transport. This means that more parking than ever will be required to service the shopping precinct and the apartments themselves, which will need to be more spacious and better designed to allow for the needs of post-COVID living.
    Already on this site there is an ugly and oversized development. Do not compound this error by doubling down on it.

  14. Sarah Murphy commented

    This is the perfect thing to do if you want to ruin a liveable suburb, making it completely un-liveable. Parking is already an issue, 20 levels must be a joke. Covid is highlighting the issues of high density Living. Congestion on roads is also becoming an issue. Greed is certainly ruining what was a wonderful little suburb. This development will completely change the face of Northcote, which is becoming unrecognisable.

  15. Chris Clarke commented

    All Darebin residents should be provided with more information including the actual plans and the timeframe for residents objections should be extended because of Covid.
    On the face of it the scale of the proposal is totally innappropriate. The existing far smaller tower is already an eyesore overlooking our best central park.
    We dont want parks taken over as the private backyards to massive residential towers.
    Parts of the park are already bare from high usage.
    There is already a shortage of carparking at the Plaza and any parks removed should be replaced.
    The landscaping at the Plaza is disgraceful with a lack of trees and large areas of bitumen with no shade. Council needs to encourage the owners to fix up the dilapidated grounds and merge the landscaping with the park - not allow massive overdevelopment.
    The planned tower would overlook Santa Maria College girls school and should be opposed by the school and all parents. It will shade the school in winter when sun is needed the most.

  16. Stuart Mitchell commented

    This proposed development is far too tall and out of character for the neighbourhood. It will destroy the community feel that existed with Northcote plaza and dominate over the village vibe of High Stree, casting long shadows in the mornings and afternoons. To reduce parking in the area while increasing residences and shops is completely crazy. This development would be catastrophic for the neighbourhood and the community

  17. Jenny Maiolo commented

    29 stories? This is 20 too much. This is destructive to the atmosphere of this community. It will be the slum ghetto of the future if the developers are grAnted their request. Think about the number of apartments and residents this would number and the burden placed on local resources - schools, transport etc. The loss of car parking is also a critical failure of design. I am a Darebin resident residing in Alphington that relies on these supermarkets and the ability to park my car to shop and use the local medical services.

  18. Paul W commented

    Northcote Plaza is currently a strata title that has had little or no investment over the past 30 years, a re-development such as this will be nothing but an asset our community. Would you prefer an ageing Kmart and secondary Coles or a community hub with a library, childcare centre, public landscaped spaces and a gallery?

    Sites such as this, so close to the city, serviced by multiple modes of PT should be first in line to be developed to assist with affordable housing for younger generations. This particular site is over 200m from High Street and I fail to see how the character of high street will be detrimentally impacted at all.

    In over 10 years of living in the area the car park has never once been completely full and I have always been able to find a park.

    Any COVID related arguements against this development are irrelevant and are being used as an excuse to oppose a project that will benefit the whole community when complete.

  19. Elif Cetiner commented

    The scale of this development is significant and not in keeping with the scale of other development in the area. The impact on traffic will be significant and the need for parking greater. There are already numerous apartment developments in the area and no consideration for public transport and the impact on liveability in the area. There needs to be adequate time for community consultation and for the impacts of the proposal to be considered.

  20. Jenny semple commented

    Completely inappropriate and far too high . Will not fit in with the area or work in with the All Nations Park or the surrounding area . Reducing car park is just ridiculous and clearly not helpful for local shoppers ! This development will increase traffic in the area , with more cars !!!
    Northcote is already losing a lot of its housing character, which is unique . This will just add to that loss and damage . Why would Council even consider this ???

  21. Janet Rayner commented

    Parking is essential in this location to enable shoppers to purchase goods and transport them home again. A reduction in parking in this already busy shopping precinct will only add to congestion. A multi-storey building in this area with no additional parking will reduce the amenity of and access to All Nations Park and further add to congestion in Northcote.

    Shadowing is also a concern for the park and nearby properties.

    The biggest problem with the new wave of multi-storey buildings built along the corridors to the CBD is the poor design and size of internal living spaces in the residential units. This must be addressed in any new proposals or Northcote will be the slum of the future. It has already started when multiple apartment buildings were allowed to proceed on St Georges Rd and High St in Northcote, Thornbury and Preston. By not having car parking in these buildings (or reduced number of parking spaces) it has not made people not own cars it has just forced cars onto the already crowded streets.

    Whilst I hear some people say this is not a COVID-19 argument, you would have to be naive to not at least consider how this will affect society in the future and this includes the types of buildings we will potentially live and work in and whether travelling on an already inadequate public transport system will be the best option.

  22. Christina Ellis commented

    Growth in a popular suburb is understandable, but 29 stories of far too tall for a suburb such as Northcote. It's not the CBD.

    This is yet another case of developers trying to squeeze every penny out of a site with little concern for the impact on the surrounding infrastructure and community. Separation street is very narrow and barely able to handle the current levels of traffic, adding dozens of stories of apartments will make that worse.

    This isn't a case of NIMBYism, per se, as the community doesn't seem to be wholly against the idea of a development there full-stop, just very against the idea of a team build in an area that should have balanced and sensitive development to meet the present community's needs without chucking it all out the window for residents who may not even live there yet.

  23. Cassandra Tormey commented

    Completely inappropriate and far too high . Will not fit in with the area or work in with the All Nations Park or the surrounding area . Reducing car park is just ridiculous and clearly not helpful for local shoppers! This development will increase traffic in the area , with more cars.
    Northcote is already losing a lot of its housing character, which is unique . This will just add to that loss and damage . Why would Council even consider this ???

  24. Victoria Lane commented

    This proposal is completely out of character with the surrounding area. Any further towers in addition to the existing tower will shadow over the Santa Maria girls school and All Nations Park. Even proposing 29 storeys in a post Covid world is ridiculous. Where is the sustainable housing element? Where is the social and affordable housing component? Why would a council ever approve a CBD office tower in the suburbs? How would the public transport system cope with the additional burden?

  25. Andrew Schmidt commented

    Twenty eight stories is dramatically out of step with the surrounding township. The current 10 story tower at the Plaza already stands out like a sore thumb and we should not be goi above that height.

  26. Jacquie Kelly commented

    the most important thing is to get the entrance way into the development right. Currently the traffic lights T- intersection on Separation St across from the Library is so, so ugly, stark and depressing. Take the building footprint back off the street and put some green space and trees there, with an attractive terracing and fence perhaps. Then only have 4-6 story buildings for residential, with lots of North facing windows. Create a piazza. Have shops that face outward and not lots of plain concrete walls. Do something creative, people friendly and beautiful. Not cookie-cutter.

  27. Andrew FB commented

    Is it just me or do others think supporting comments sound just like they are planted by the developers? Contributions to this debate should only be accepted from verified residents who live within 1km of the proposed ‘development’. 5-6 Buildings of up to 30 storeys is absolutely ridiculous. Completely out of character and utterly inappropriate for Northcote. This is Australia, not some corrupt emerging country. Keep our city, our suburb liveable.

  28. Niamh Doherty commented

    This proposed development is too large for northcote. Giant shadows will be created by the height of the buildings. The 29 stories is excessive. This development plans to reduce car parking.
    Currently there are not enough car spaces. Taking away car spaces means if locals cannot park they will drive further to other businesses for parking. Car spaces are required for local shoppers to carry large bulky items home. Driving further is not very 'green'.

  29. Mark Jay commented

    Scale and Size is inappropriate for the area
    Separation Street cannot handle the increase in traffic
    The shadow would impact the health of the park, the school grounds and nearby streets
    The sunlight reflection will directly impact the existing tower residents
    The loss of many existing mature lemon scented gums impacts wildlife and carbon storage
    Construction work on the scale required may cause damage to the existing apartment building

  30. Liz (Elizabeth) Schroeder commented

    The day before I heard about this proposed development I was looking at the surrounds from the top of the "hill" in All Nations Park. I was struck by the number of new developments that were visible to the west since the last time I had looked at that view - I was quite horrified.

    The most dominant, of course, is the development on the Plaza itself, but it would be dwarfed by the proposed development at 25 Separation Street. Any new development should be no higher than the Northcote Plaza building, but my very strong preference would be that it be significantly lower if any development is approved - and certainly no taller than two or three stories.

    This is because 1. it is a corner site, and any building beyond two or three stories high would be a very dominating building at that location. 2. Infrastructure in the area is already overwhelmed - try getting a seat on public transport (particularly trains) from this area in non-COVID times. There's absolutely no chance of getting a seat, and often, no chance of even getting on the train at all. Public transport on this line will not be improved if the Liberal Party wins the next State election. 3. The character of our city is very much based on strip shopping with lots of cute / quirky / interesting little shops, cafes and businesses. We don't need another soulless shopping centre adjacent to Northcote Plaza - and anything approved there would take business away from the small traders and businesses on High Street. 4. Parking is already an issue - any development must include parking for the residents of that building (a minimum of 1 car parking space per bedroom for each apartment, plus sufficient parking for anyone shoppers visiting that complex). Parking at Northcote Plaza is already frequently over-subscribed, so there must be many more parking spaces beyond those required for residents of the development and those currently existing in the Northcote Central basement and Northcote Plaza included in any development of the site.

    Developers seeking approval for multi-dwelling buildings in the City of Darebin should be required to build 1 apartment for social housing for every 5 they build at no charge to any level of government (all to be of the same standard, of course). This is a cost-effective way to build social housing and provides some social good from the impost and detriment placed on our community by such developments. (Some good should come of their greed at least.)

    Thanks!

  31. Jennifer Guha commented

    This is too tall a tower for the area. It would ruin the feel of the area being inner city suburb. We do not want skyscrapers here. Too many dwellings too in an overcrowded area. What about the relationship of densely populated buildings with the current pandemic? Future consideration is needed. Also car parking should be increased if you have more residents as people in Melbourne love their cars. With current pandemic more people are driving and fewer will take public transport. This will continue for quite some time. this proposal makes Northcote a way less appealing place to live.

  32. Vanessa commented

    While the upgrade of parts of the Northcote Plaza shopping centre might be of community benefit, this development proposal is unreasonable and will present a very poor urban outcome for Northcote if allowed to proceed in its current form.

    The proposed height of a building up to 28 levels will have many severe negative impacts. All Nations Park is a tremendous public asset and its large size provides many different areas where the community can enjoy many different activities. The existing 10 or so storey Acacia apartment building above the Plaza is overbearing from most vantage points in All Nations Park and the only part of the Park where it doesn’t dominate view-lines is from the far east extremity of the Park where it is obscured by trees. By comparison, the soaring visual bulk of the newly proposed building that, if allowed, would be 3 times as tall as Acacia, will present completely overbearing views from every part of All Nations Park and from the surrounding low level Northcote streets. This will be an enormous disadvantage to the community and particularly to all users of All Nations Park. A building of such height will severely detract from the huge community benefit that All Nations Park presents. The visual bulk of any building over 5 or 6 levels at the Plaza will have a harmful effect and detract from the enjoyment of All Nations Park for the entire community.

    This development proposal is by no means a proposal that could be said to be in harmony with the Northcote Plaza precinct. It is quite the opposite in its current proposed form, and not only in terms of its visual bulk. The shadows from such tall buildings will negatively impact All Nations Park and surrounding areas. The Acacia apartment building already overshadows parts of All Nations Park in the afternoons on various days of the year. Any new development at Northcote Plaza should not be allowed to cast any shadow on any part of All Nations Park at any time of the day on any day of the year – that is the only equitable way to assess the impact of the proposed development on the surrounding community and community assets.

    The development proposal in its current form will also have a large negative impact on Santa Maria College that sits opposite Northcote Plaza on the south side of Separation Street. The proposed development will cast long shadows over the school, particularly over their asphalt and grassed playing fields, primarily in winter when of course access to sunshine is critical to the health of the school community.

    One of the major drawcards of All Nations Park is The Hill which provides amazing views in all directions, interrupted only by the solitary building that is the Acacia apartments. The introduction of further bulky buildings will severely detract from the views from The Hill, negatively impacting the wonderful views and serenity that can be experienced all year round from The Hill. Despite protestations to the opposite, the proposed development will shut out some views of the Melbourne CBD from some parts of The Hill. This will be incredibly disadvantageous for the massive crowds that gather to watch the New Year’s Eve Melbourne city fireworks from all over The Hill structure, both on its peak and on its pathways.

    This proposed development will benefit a very small group of stakeholders but will negatively impact an enormous community. This development should not be allowed in its current form and should not be allowed to set a precedent for other inappropriate development in Darebin. Darebin Council needs to take a stand for the whole of the Darebin Community and do everything they can to prevent this unreasonably high and poorly conceived development proposal to proceed in its current proposed form.

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