Bayside Council has asked the developer of a proposed $42 million redevelopment of the Bexley North Hotel to withdraw the development application.
“The request to withdraw is based on their current plans with show significant non-compliance issues that will result in a refusal,” a Bayside Council spokesman said.
The development application is for a six-storey motel containing 66 rooms and a nine-storey shop top block containing 80 dwellings on the hotel site at Slade Road, Bexley North.
The Stop the Tower action group has formed by residents to oppose the proposed the redevelopment of the hotel site saying it breaches height and floorspace restrictions, does not provide adequate parking and will add to the area’s chronic traffic problems.
About 70 people attended a public meeting called by the action group last night at The Clune Centre, Kingsgrove attended by Bayside councillors include mayor Bill Saravinovski, Councillor Andrew Tsounis and Rockdale MP Steve Kamper.
“We were given assurances from the council that it won’t progress,” Stop the Tower action group spokesman, Stephen Kelly said.
“The meeting was told that Bayside Council has last week informed the applicant for DA that they must either withdraw the DA or it will be refused.
“This is on the grounds that the current DA exceeds height, beaks floorspace restrictions and numerous other planning considerations, including lacking parking.
“At this early stage we are pleased with the intervention of Mayor Bill Saravinovski and the advocacy of Steve Kamper MP to the point that Bayside Council will reject the current development application but concerns remain that the applicant will by-pass council and seek the approval from the State Government.
“It is alarming that as this DA is over $20 million in budget it will ultimately be submitted for approval to the Sydney Eastern City Planning Panel which is an unelected and unaccountable group of bureaucrats who live outide of the area.
“Residents need to be vigilant that a new development application re-submitted needs to comply with existing guidelines but also it needs to meet the needs of people who live in the area.”
Mr Kelly said the development would not be out of place in Wolli Creek but is totally out of character in Bexley North.
“There needs to be a plan for the suburb and consistency. The proposed development is a monstrosity,” he said.
“The result would be a jarring anomaly when a nine-storey tower sits across the street from single storey houses. The buildings will be an eyesore. Planting a garden on the top a tower will not disguise a brutalist scar on the urban landscape.”
Mr Kelly also said that the planned motel seems to be designed for quick access to the airport where travellers will park their cars in clogged side streets to get on overcrowded trains and buses to catch flights.
“The group is also concerned about the NSW Government's plan to establish Priority Precincts in Bardwell Park and Turrella.
“Residents in Bexley North also reported that parts of Bexley North are likely to be re-zoned. Some people around the station and Shaw Street have received letters about this.”
The 4236sqm site is on the southern side of the rail corridor and 160-metres from Bexley North Railway Station. The proposed DA will have a 1267sqm of new commercial floor space.
The development would be staged to allow for the continued operation of the Bexley North Hotel and bottle shop in the medium term. The current DA relates to stage one works, with stage two to be the subject of a separate DA.
Because the project is divided into two DAs the developer sought a height variation.
The maximum extend of non-compliance on the site is 29.6m which equates to a variation of 9.4m or 43 per cent.
“The proposal seeks a variation to the height of buildings and floor space ratio development standards, however the breach is considered to allow for an appropriate development density in a well-connected location,” the Statement of Environmental Effects accompanying DA stated.