St Leonards Central development not given go-ahead
20 January 2016
Willoughby Council has been informed by the Department of Premier and Cabinet that the State government has decided not to progress the Unsolicited Proposal by the St Leonards Consortium (Brookfield Multiplex/Alto Group) for the ‘St Leonards Central’ development in and around, St Leonards Station.
The land involved is property owned by Council, RailCorp and a private owner, the Alto Group. The proposed preliminary concept design was for three mixed commercial/ residential towers up to 55 storeys in height and a plaza over the railway corridor.
The Premiers Department has outlined the following reasons for not progressing the proposal past Stage 1 of the process:
- The pending outcome of the St Leonards Strategic Centre study (currently underway with the Department of Planning and Environment and local councils) – which will set the framework for the future of St. Leonards and future development.
- More clarity is needed by the Department of Transport regarding the alignment of the new Sydney Metro tunnel at Crows Nest/St Leonards.
- Council’s position on the provision of its land as part of the proposed development site. In May 2015, Willoughby Council gave landowners consent to the lodging of the Unsolicited Proposal with the State Government but did not support the proposal that emerged. Proposed Council amalgamation in the area may change how Council proposes to use their property in Chandos Street.
The St Leonards Consortium and/or other entities may submit updated or new proposals once the planning framework, transport infrastructure and Council’s land ownership position are resolved, and are addressed in any new submission.
Willoughby Mayor Gail Giles-Gidney said Council agreed with the State Government’s decision and reasons not to move forward at this stage, and pointed to community feedback as another vital reason why the proposal needed further refinement.
“The proposal drew significant community interest and we received a large amount of feedback from our residents. Our residents told us they are not opposed to change, but they did not support the vison for St Leonards Central as put forward by the proponent. It’s imperative the local community is involved in setting a sustainable future direction for this important centre,” Mayor Gail said.
“Likewise, Council supports growth and change in the city however it is important for this to be underpinned by sound strategic planning. The proposal is for a large mixed-use development, but this contradicts the Local Environmental Plan (LEP), which earmarks the area to provide jobs in the centre’s commercial core,” Mayor Gail said.
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