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Chapel reVision

Chapel reVision Structure Plan (C172) and Activity Centre Zone (ACZ1

August 29, 2017

After 5 years of on-going collaboration with Council, we are pleased that innovative recommendation in the Chapel Re-Vision Structure Plan (2014) are now implemented as permanent planning controls (via Activity Centre Zone 1) in the City of Stonnington’s Planning Scheme.

In 2012, Hansen Partnership was appointed by the City of Stonnington to prepare the Chapel ReVision Structure Plan. Ongoing rapid growth along and behind the Chapel Street spine formed the impetus to this strategic work.

Much of the change focused on redevelopment of former industrial and commercial areas behind the retail strip for residential apartments and less investment was being directed along the retail strip given, the heritage value of many of the shop-frontages.

Market demand for residential redevelopment has also resulted in less construction of commercial space, with considerable employment being lost from the area, further diminishing the role of Chapel Street as a Principal Activity Centre. The Chapel ReVision Structure Plan has sought to address this phenomenon through innovative land use and built form controls that work within Victorian Planning Scheme.

These innovative approaches to planning and built form controls have receive multi-faceted support from the community, industry experts and received Ministerial gazettal in August 2017.  They included:

  • Vertical zoning.  Permit triggers that encourage the lower levels of buildings to be used for retail and employment generating uses, regardless of whether upper levels are used for residential.
  • Adaptable buildings. A requirement for increased floor to floor heights in the lower levels of buildings along main streets, to allow for a change of use over time, as community needs change.
  • Flexible layouts – Guidelines that encourage flexible and adaptable internal layouts of buildings, to allow for a mix of uses and variations in apartment size and configuration, over time.
  • Responsive building setbacks – A sophisticated suite of building setbacks that respond in a positive way to the wide variety of interfaces and abuttals that exist throughout and around the centre.
  • Mandatory and discretionary building height limits – A balance of mandatory and discretionary building heights to provide certain to the community that redevelopment in the most valued precincts within the centre will be appropriately managed, whilst providing flexibility in less constrained parts of the centre.
  • Main streets and side streets.  A distinction between main streets and side street in terms of the land use controls that apply, especially at street level and in the lower levels of buildings.
  • Neighbourhood plans – Tailored requirements for different neighbourhoods that exist through the centre, which add to the eclectic mix, character and diversity that makes the Chapel Street area such a wonder destination.

The realisation of Chapel ReVision Structure Plan and subsequent Activity Centre Zone demonstrates positive collaborative process with the City of Stonnington and their panel of experts to appropriately balance development opportunities that considers valued distinct characters of each neighbourhood along the Chapel Street spine, including Forrest Hill, South Yarra, Prahran and Windsor. Its implementation also future proofed a true mix of uses are retained, or accommodated in the long term.

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