Two Storey Beverley St Click to enlarge

Two Storey Beverley St
Click to enlarge

Two Storey Beverley Street Click to enlarge

Two Storey Beverley St
Click to enlarge

Tribunal Comments: “In reference to the height (10m), it is recognised that the desirability of providing some flexibility for design outcomes that might include, for example, the need to accommodate varied topographical conditions that are a characteristic feature in Manningham, pitched roof forms, architectural features or even a recessive third storey element”.  “Thus, I consider that the approach advocated for the applicant, said to derive from a strategic imperative to fill the building envelope by reference to its maximum height, is a flawed yardstick with which to measure the acceptability of this proposal”.

VCAT decision…..p627-2016-wang-v-manningham-cc-anor-mat12091

John Joyner,


ex senior planning officer at Manningham council, now the principal of Melbourne Planning Outcomes (MPO) and advocate for the developer wrote:  “With regard to Council’s policy position regarding three storey development only being supported in precinct A where a minimum 1,800 sqm lot size is met, the particular point to be made that the support for two storey development in this case is not a mandatory control and the Council has the procedural freedom to determine that a development with a three storey component can be approved on this site”.

“Clause 21-5 (Residential) can be quoted as follows with reference to sub-precinct A DDO8-2:In this sub-precinct if a lot has an area of less than 1,800, a townhouse style development only will be considered, but development should be a maximum of two storeys. All development in sub-precinct A should have a maximum site coverage of 60%”.

“The language, after careful consideration through and including the panel process, should has been kept as “should’ rather than “must” and does not therefore create a prohibition on three storey components of a development in precinct A”. (even if it did, the efficacy of using the Municipal Strategic Statement as a directly prescriptive device should be questioned)

Advocate statement in full …applicants-advocate-re-51-beverley-st

advertised-plans-pl15025757-38-frederick-street-doncaster        (8 metres high)

2 Storey 7.5m Townhouses Click to enlarge

2 Storey 7.5m t/house
Click to enlarge                                                             

7/2 storeys 7.7m high Click to enlarge

7/2 storey 7.7m Clay Dve
Click to enlarge                      



Beverley Street Proposal Rejected

Beverley Street Proposal and adjoining Townhouse developments


  1. D.Gleeson says:

    Very well written by the tribunal adjudicator.
    Developers will not build any higher than what is sufficient for two storeys unless the land on which they are developing is at least 1,800sqm in which case 11 metres is allowed for three storeys.
    The developer of 21 Clay Drive, also in sub-precinct A and located on sloping land, would have gone higher than 7.7metres to fit three storeys had the minimum site area condition been met.
    What would be the point of designating a minimum land size of 1,800sqm for three storey buildings if council were allowing them on smaller blocks of land.

    1. Roy Arnel says:

      I agree with the VCAT even though we ourselves would benefit if three storeys were allowed. We need to establish some degree of fairness, if council wish to retain a maximum height of 10 metres then they must also mandate two storeys because there will always be borderline cases. If we were to put a limit of two storeys only on smaller blocks there would be no problems..the developer is not going to waste money building any higher than what he has to.

    2. Warren Welsh says:

      Manningham council say that state planning have encouraged councils to specify heights only in their Development overlays rather than storeys which is why they are not mentioned in the DDO8 schedule. However Council do have a design objective for two storey townhouses on blocks of land under 1800 m2 but as this application has shown the maximum height limit of up to 10 metres, (if the land is sloped), will easily accommodate three storeys. A three storey development provides the opportunity for developers to maximise profit from larger townhouse units without exceeding the maximum site coverage condition.

  2. Damien says:

    This decision will not be the end of three storey buildings on smaller blocks nor does it mean that apartments can’t be be built anywhere in the precincts.

    43 It is also relevant to observe that:
    • although mandatory height controls exist, there is no mandatory limit
    on the number of storeys that a building may adopt; and
    • an apartment development is not a prohibited typology on a lot with
    an area of less than 1800sqm in DDO8-2. (Sub-Precinct A and also Sub-precinct B)

  3. Mei says:

    “A squeaky hinge usually gets the oil”
    The future of this type of development (three storey) may well depend on the number of objections council receive at the outset. If council get anything like the number they received against this and the previous two proposals on this land then council are more likely refuse to issue a permit and given the rationale used by VCAT it would be unlikely a developer would want to appeal.

  4. Francis says:

    I believe that every three storey proposal on a double block will be approved, even Beverley Street eventually, as long as it conforms to the neighbourhood and is not too bulky as this one was.

  5. Thomas says:

    There were three separate permit applications for a three storey development at 51 Beverley Street. Two were withdrawn and one went to VCAT where it was rejected.
    According to the Manningham council register the three proposals drew a total 215 objections. 95, 68 and 52. Manningham council should take heed and make the necessary changes to the DDO8 and remove the uncertainty. Even the Vcat members can’t agree…PLEASE!

  6. Lee says:

    VCAT have overlooked the fact that it is council’s policy that calls for the “preferred” neighbourhood character building, the flat roof contemporary design requiring up to 1.5 metres less in height than the pitch roof style that easily enables three storeys within the specified maximum height limit.
    But council’s policy is for two storey townhouse development on building sites with an area of less than 1,800 sqm.
    “To encourage development that is contemporary in design that includes an articulated built form and incorporates a range of visually interesting building materials and façade treatments”

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