Towers deferred

THE trio of mixed-use “Karrinyup West” towers planned for Karrinyup Shopping Centre has been deferred, with Development Assessment Panel members seeking some tidbits of information to clarify the final design.

The plan by Rowe Group for owner AMP adds 270 apartments across the three towers measuring nine, 15 and 24 storeys, and joining an upcoming seven storey block that was already approved. The council’s usual maximum in the area varies from four to eight storeys. 

Stirling council has a long list of objections including height, traffic, and the concerns of residents, but the call lies with the state-government dominated DAP. 

Most nearby residents oppose the towers, with 72 per cent of those within 210m outright objecting, and only 1.8 per cent were in favour. 

Usually a broader Precinct Structure Plan setting out a big holistic vision for an area is required before these big projects are allowed to go ahead, but the state government rule is pretty flimsy since the DAP can just decide a plan isn’t required if it feels a development “does not conflict with the principles of orderly and proper planning”.

The council and most residents think the proposed buildings do conflict with those principles, but the council only has two members on the DAP and the three other votes come from state-appointed members. Back in 2015 the DAP voted to approve the first stage without a PSP. 

Residents’ group Karrinyup Residents for Responsible Development would prefer four storeys on the site, and contends the project shouldn’t be approved without a PSP. Member Simon Wheeler says he would’ve preferred the council got onto the PSP years ago but he’s glad the current elected lineup is backing their opposition. 

Earlier this year the KRRD called for a special electors meeting where they convinced Stirling council to go ahead and put together a PSP.

But the Karrinyup West vote will likely be cast long before that’s set in stone, with the DAP wanting the last bits of info back so a decision can be made within 120 days.

The site owner reckons it’ll be good for the neighbourhood: AMP’s Scott Nugent told the DAP the project would transition the centre from a traditional 80s shopping experiences to a true mixed use outcome that’d lead to more vibrancy given the extra residents it’ll bring in.

He said it was a high quality development that’d underpin the whole Karrinyup redevelopment and create “an activity entertainment precinct”. 

by DAVID BELL

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