Bid to rezone Kogarah Bay waterfront site for seniors housing development rejected

A request to rezone a Kogarah Bay waterfront for a seniors housing development of up to six storeys has been rejected.

Sydney South Planning Panel found the proposal did not demonstrate strategic merit.

The panel also agreed with an assessment by Georges River Council staff the bulk and scale of the proposed development was excessive for the area.

However the panel left the door open for a further modified application because of zoning discrepancies and noted the council was reviewing planning controls for foreshore land.

The sloping property, in Vista Street, Sans Souci, adjoining St George Motor Boat Club, is occupied at present by a two-storey house, sheds and garage.

Nanevski Development requested a review of the zoning to allow a development of a building rising in height from four to six storeys, with basement car parking.

The applicant originally wanted 48 units but cut the number to 32 in a modified application which also included reduced floor space ratio and increased setback but slightly higher building height.

The present zones are part W2 Recreational Waterways and part R2 Low Density Residential with a maximum building height of nine metres.

The developer wanted the W2 component rezoned to R2, the foreshore building line amended and the LEP changed to allow extra height (up to 19.3 metres) and floor space ratio allowed for seniors developments.

The panel refused to allow the the proposal to be submitted to the Department of Planning and Environment through the Gateway process.

The council assessment report said one and two storey homes adjoined the site to the north and east, while the southern boundary was next to a public reserve adjoining the motor boat club. 

The report said the present zoning restricted the building height to nine metres.

The sloping site would mean the height would be about two metres above the nine metre height limit when viewed from Vista Street.

Amended plans submitted by the developer were considered by council staff still to be unacceptable.

While there was a slight reduction in the bulk and FSR, “the scheme still presents a bulk and scale that is inconsistent with the local area”, the council found.

The council said the proposal was inconsistent with the South District Plan strategic merit test for “more housing in the right locations that carefully consider the local features and character”.

It was also inconsistent with the state planning policy for seniors housing as the development would not maintain a compatible scale with its surrounding low density character.

The council said the area was likely to retain its R2 zoning in the future. “An undesirable precedent would be established under the guise of creating seniors housing,” it submitted.