A SITE-SPECIFIC development control plan (DCP) for the former Corrimal Coke Works has been adopted by Wollongong City Council, paving the way forward for more sustainable homes on the site.
Illawarra Coke Company Pty Ltd and Legacy Property plan 550 residences for the former industrial site, which will include a mix of apartment blocks and townhouses.
Council adopted the DCP chapter on Monday night, which puts in place policies that will guide how the development needs to be designed to meet the requirements of the Wollongong Local Environmental Plan (LEP) and State-wide rules.
Council endorsed the site-specific DCP chapter for the coke works site to serve as a tool to guide the master plan, identify opportunities and constraints, and to provide guidance in the assessment of future development applications (DA).
Wollongong Lord Mayor Gordon Bradbery said the DCP chapter is an important document as it incorporates the feedback from key stakeholders and the broader community, along with findings of a range of technical studies that should be considered when assessing a DA.
Cr Bradbery said that the new chapter had gone through a series of revisions in response to community feedback.
“Council’s priority has always been on getting this process right from the get-go,” he said.
“Like the former coke works themselves, this redevelopment process has a long history to it, and we’ve worked hard to keep our community involved from start to finish.
“This has included consultation with local Aboriginal community members to acknowledge and understand the cultural significance of the site and broader area.
“We’ve taken their feedback onboard and now updated the DCP chapter to include a number of specific objectives and controls that consider the cultural significance of the land.”
The draft site specific DCP chapter was exhibited in 2021 as part of a suite of documents prepared in support of the draft planning proposal to rezone the site for residential use.
What’s different about the adopted Wollongong DCP 2009 Chapter D19?
Parking and active transport
A key recommended change to the DCP is a reduction in parking rates on site. This change reflects the Transport for NSW submission encouraging Council to achieve a more sustainable outcome by promoting active transport options given the proximity to the railway station.
As part of an integrated transport precinct masterplan, a key vision for the site is the inclusion of shared paths and bicycle paths. This aims to make it attractive and accessible for people to walk and cycle to key locations including the railway station, bus stops and the Corrimal town centre, schools and recreation area.
Aboriginal cultural significance and local heritage
Council says it has strengthened a number of objectives and controls to include acknowledgement of Aboriginal culture and the cultural significance of the location and surrounding areas. These controls, Council says will help encourage conservation of heritage.
Sustainability and climate-friendly design
One of the proposals from Sydney Water was the consideration of on-site recycling and reuse of water as part of water cycle management and wastewater services. The DCP now requires the development to reach a satisfactory arrangement with Sydney Water.
The DCP also encourages a number of different sustainability measures such as:
- Water Sensitive Urban Design – an approach that uses better urban planning and design to reuse stormwater, stopping it from reaching waterways by mimicking the natural water cycle as closely as possible.
- a voluntary commitment to achieving a 5-star Green Star through the Green Building Council Australia.
- requirements for electric vehicle charging facilities in new developments
- controls added to retain trees along Railway Street.
Community and business
A plaza precinct is proposed to act as a community meeting place. The DCP and master plan will guide the built form and design.
Council says it has also expanded the aims and objectives to include opportunities for small business operations. At the same time, Council clarified that the provision of neighbourhood scale retail precinct will be at a scale that recognises “retail hierarchy”. This means that Council is recognising the importance of the existing Corrimal central business district (DBD) and centres in East Corrimal and Bellambi and as a result limiting the size of shops in the Corrimal Coke Works development.
Legacy Property’s Mike Williams said the Corrimal Coke Works redevelopment has the potential to make a lasting, positive impact on Corrimal and is designed to be shared by all residents of the region, enhancing social connectivity and boosting economic outcomes.
However, Corrimal Community Action Group (C CAG) continue to raise concerns over traffic management and other environmental factors related to the residential development.
C CAG president Anne Marett says while the current plan is an improvement on previous proposals, there are still a number of concerns.
“The issue of greatest concern to the community is still the traffic this development will generate, all through one access point on Railway Street,” she said.
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