“three storey townhouses are not supported by the Municipal Strategic Statement”

Townhouse/ Apts at 51 Beverley Street Click to enlarge

Townhouse/ Apts
at 51 Beverley Street
Click to enlarge

Residents of leafy Beverley Street, East Doncaster 3109, breathed a sigh of relief when they were informed by the the Manningham Planning Department that a recent application for a three, partial fourth storey apartment/townhouse development at number 51, had been withdrawn. This was after  council had received 68 objections to the development, (application number P/L024481), during the advertising period.

The proposal was lodged despite council’s policy which restricts any building on the land to a townhouse style development of no more than two storeys. The MunicipalStrategic Statement says in part; “In this sub-precinct, (Sub- precinct A) if a lot has an area of less than 1,800m²,

a townhouse style development proposal only will be considered, but development should be a maximum two storeys.

The proposal failed to meet the Objectives and Standards of Precinct 2 Sub-Precinct A of Clause 21.05 (Residential) of the Manningham Planning Scheme, as the proposed three storey townhouse building is in excess of the two storey built form which is a desired building form sought by Sub-Precinct A  where  a lot size is less than 1,800m2.

The proposal failed to meet the Objectives of Clause 43.02 (Design and Development Overlay Schedule 8) of the Manningham Planning Scheme as the design of the basement car park is such that it projects excessively above the  natural ground level.

The development is also contrary to the provisions incorporated in Amendment C96.  “a three storey development of any type is not supported in the Municipal Strategic Statement where only two storey development is envisaged”

Grounds of objections received included; the three storey development does not conform  to the Manningham Municipal Strategic Statement where only a two storey townhouse style is specified on this land size, the proposal is not in keeping with neighbourhood character, the excavation disguises the true height of the building, increased traffic, devaluation of property, visual bulk, loss of privacy, overlooking, and insufficient car parking.

Three Storey Withdrawn Click to enlarge

Three Storey Withdrawn
Click to enlarge

The applicant has indicated that a further planning application will be lodged, once a revised design is completed.

Any new application will be subject to same notification process as the previous applications.

A new sign will have to be erected on the land  indicating the number of storeys etc and the process of receiving objections will start over again.

One positive aspect is the fact that objectors are now far better informed having “gone to school” on previous applications.



  1. Talford says:

    Approximately 3 years ago, when asked why there were no two storeys developments being built in accordance with council policy, Mr Paul Molan, the then Director of Planning and Environment, at submitters meeting, said in effect; “A three storey building can easily be designed within a height limit of 9m, the same height allowed for two storeys, particularly if the recommended flat roof contemporary design is employed”.
    This was a truthful statement which explains why the contemporary flat roof design, “the preferred character” is the only style being built in the growth zones. This is because it allows developers to gain an extra storey over and above what is proposed in Manningham’s policy statement.

  2. K D says:

    It will be interesting to see what they dish up with their third application. I hope Council will honour its policy and restrict any townhouse development to a maximum of two storey, if not we will be lodging another objection.


  3. David says:

    It is unreasonable to expect car park basement walls to be located completely below the ground level because the fall of the land does not always enable this. Therefore I would suggest that a maximum of one metre be allowed for this contingency.

    1.000 designated as a leeway for fall OR an allowance for protruding basement walls whichever is applicable.
    0.300 for floor slab,
    2.700 for first floor ceiling height,
    0.300 for slab between,
    2.700 for second floor ceiling height. (can be 2.4m (8 feet)
    0.200 for skillion roof)
    7.200 metres (23 ft 8 inches) total height required for a two storey contemporary building.
    This would be similar in height to townhouses already developed in the area.


  4. Jade says:

    If it is council’s policy for two storey developments to be built within a maximum height limit of 9m, (10m on slopes), as applicable to 51 Beverley Street, Doncaster East, and developers are demonstrating that three storeys, even an extra fourth, can easily be built within the 10m, then there is a need to make an adjustment to the schedule.
    An obvious solution would be for the schedule be altered to read;
    The maximum height of the building must not exceed two storeys or ten metres which ever is the lesser.

    • Agreeable says:

      I agree entirely, make it clear cut so as everyone can understand. The developers are not going to build any higher than they have to. A more realistic height such as eight metres plus a one metre allowance for fall, could be prescribed.
      It is rarely discussed, but according to the growth zone regulations the council can raise or lower the recommended maximum height of 9 metres.
      It clearly states; “Yes, 9 metres But a higher or lower maximum building height can be set by a council”.

  5. Objector says:

    The proposal at 51 Beverley did not comply with Amendment C96 as the site (approx 1500 square metres) was located in Sub-Precinct A of Precinct 2, (Residential Areas Surrounding Activity Centres and along Main Roads), and did not meet the minimum land area requirement of 1,800 square metres.

    The site area did not meet the Municipal Strategic Statement (MSS)requirements for a three storey building,

    The proposal was also add odds with Manningham MSS which limits the development to two storey townhouse style development within a maximum height envelope of 9 metres, (10 metres if the land is sloped)

    The car park basement walls projected excessively above the NGL (natural ground level),

    The height of the building (approximately 11.590 metres) was measured from the base of the excavation which concealed the true height of the development when measured from above the NGL

  6. Friend of Talford says:

    The application at 51 Talford Street, East Doncaster is another example where the council had crossed boundaries to favor the developer by not conforming to its own schedule or having any consideration at the impacts of the building’s scale and height. Council had allowed the developer a height 10.600 metres without adding the depth of the excavation which was about one metre making the overall height of the building approximately 11.600 metres!

    • Nick says:

      Given that the overall design objectives of the DDO8 and council’s policy document envisage two storeys town house developments on smaller development sites, gaining an extra storey due to the slope of the land is not addressing a site constraint, but rather turning it into a development advantage in terms of producing a greater unit yield. Council officials have been accepting applications where the actual height of the development is understated by it being measured from the natural ground level instead at the base slab below it in the excavation.

  7. Esme says:

    Council must adhere to its policy for two storey townhouse development and reject any proposal that is higher, otherwise it will be flying in the face of what was achieved by amendment C96 which put a stop to any three storey developments occurring on land under 1,800 square metres in Sub-precinct A.


  8. Beverley Street says:

    I object to three storey apartment buildings masquerading as “two storey townhouse style” developments.

    Townhouse cluster infill has been going on since the early 80’s and I have no objection to it continuing providing it is in keeping with what has already been built and that it be restricted to two storeys. I would object to such a high density as that proposed in the previous application in Beverley Street.
    A ratio of one unit per 175 square metres of land area would be more acceptable. This would equate to approximately four units on the average sized land and about eight dwellings for the Beverley Street proposal which is on a double block.

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