No Demolition without Approval - Notice of Motion

Published: Friday, 27 July 2018 at 3:15:52 PM

The City of Vincent Council this week supported a Notice of Motion to investigate if it is possible to reinstate development approvals before the demolition of single houses in the City of Vincent.

In 2015, the former State Government introduced new Planning and Development Regulations that removed the requirement of a development approval before the demolition of single dwellings. This means that houses can be demolished without having development approval for what will be built on site.

“Currently you don’t need development approval to demolish a home, only a demolition permit. Unfortunately, the 2015 change in regulation is impacting our ability to influence better retention of local character and intact streetscapes in Vincent. Sites are simply being cleared without consideration of future development or landscaping requirements,” said Mayor Emma Cole.

Prior to the 2015 change, the City was able to undertake a development assessment process, including community advertising and consultation, could refer applications to the Design Review Panel for advice, and had the opportunity to discuss with applicants the benefits of character and tree retention. It also allowed for the City to prevent vacant lots being undeveloped in our neighbourhoods for lengthy periods of time. 

“Reinstating the requirement for development approval prior to demolition would give us back the opportunity to have dialogue with applicants before they make the decision to demolish old homes or remove mature trees, and talk through the incentives and assistance available to them. It is also a really valuable tool in preventing “broken tooth” streets, where vacant lots can sit idle for months or even years.” said Mayor Emma Cole.

“The change to regulations mean that in order to retain character we have to introduce a Heritage Area or make individual homes heritage listed. But heritage listing isn’t always the right solution for every home. Character homes and intact streetscapes are also really important in Vincent, but the lack of regulation impacts the effectiveness of our Character Retention Areas, where sites can still be cleared without approval.”

“We have been advocating for the State Government to reintroduce the ‘no demolition without development approval’ provision into the Planning and Development regulations, and will continue to do so. At the same time, we want to see what the City of Vincent may be able to do to reinstate the provision specific to Vincent, including whether we can have a provision within the City of Vincent’s Local Planning Scheme 2. In the meantime, we are really keen to keep the lines of communication open with people who are looking at demolishing homes and removing mature trees prior to development,” she said.

For more information email mail@vincent.wa.gov.au or call 9273 6000.

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