fishermans bend

BRIEF: Responses to the latest planning moves on Fishermans Bend in Melbourne, the prime development zone on the edge of the CBD, have been variable. New planning frameworks announced by the state government limit the CBD-matching building heights zones initiated by the previous Liberal government to more modest scales and population – 80,000 instead of the previous 120,000.

And while a lower density brings arguably more liveable zones, development industry advocates say that sites near the CBD are precisely those that can take greater density because they “borrow” existing infrastructure and lessen the need for big new expenditures, especially on transport. Transport, however, is still the sticking point, with estimates saying extending a tramline from the CBD and other infrastructure could reach $10 billion and the framework for providing this on largely privately owned land is still up for debate.

The latest rules impose a 6 per cent affordable housing target for all new developments. There will be an uplift for including social housing units. 

Regardless of the value of the latest plans, businesses owning property there such as Goodman, GPT and Dexus are holding their breath: all this could change if the Andrews Government is debunked in the 24 November election.

UDIA Victoria executive director Danni Addison said delays while making space for good planning, meant there would be no activity in the precinct until late 2019 at the earliest.