Support gathers for Dingley golf course

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THE number of submissions from people hoping to save Kingswood Golf Course in Dingley from being turned into housing has surpassed 8000.

The charge to save the course from being subdivided into lots is being run by the Save Kingswood Group, which has been rallying to prevent the development for the last three years.

“The course is in the centre of Dingley Village and it’s the only big tree parkland we have. This development could easily flood out Dingley Village more than it does already, and traffic, infrastructure, and services are barely keeping up at the moment. They certainly wouldn’t be able to cater for another 1000 small units. We do love the green nature at Dingley Village and it’s just sacrilege to bulldoze it,” Save Kingswood Group Secretary Kevin Poulter said.

The cut off point to submit the objections was 30 August, and the Save Kingswood Group has now submitted them to Kingston council offices.

Plans have been touted since 2015 to redistribute the land and turn it into housing. The project’s senior development manager Anna Martiniello outlined the plan for the course to The News earlier in the year.

“We are proposing a master-planned residential community, with 760 individual lots. The development will include a mixture of low-density and medium-density housing, more than 14.6 percent of the site dedicated to usable open space, flood retention works for some 62,000m3 of stormwater, more than five times the statutory requirement, a financial contribution to council of $7525 per dwelling, and a dedicated financial contribution towards affordable housing,” she said (“Homes plan on course”, The News 25/7/18).

The Dingley Golf Course land was bought by fund manager ISPT for $125 million in 2014.

On 27 August Kingston Council debated whether they were ready to prepare a feedback report for the land’s planning scheme amendment for their September meeting, but that was voted down. Cr Barth said that consulting all stakeholders and preparing the report is “too significant a task for it to be rushed” given the large number of submissions. This delays any decision on the future of the course until later in the year. A summary of community feedback is an aspect of that planned report.

Member for Isaacs Mark Dreyfus MP has publicly flagged his opposition to the plan to turn the 53 hectare space into housing. Mr Dreyfus has recently been knocking on doors to signal his concerns to residents in the Dingley area.

“Dingley Village is a fantastic community, but it has limited public transport options and the proposed development of Peninsula Kingswood Golf Club would clearly create significant road congestion and change the village feel of the community,” he said.

“I’ve met with members of the Save Kingswood group and spoken to many Dingley Village residents about this matter. It is clear to me that this proposed development is not right for Dingley Village and the planning scheme amendment application should be rejected.

“Developers should not assume that when they buy special use-zoned land it will be re-zoned as a formality. That is not how planning should work. This is a fight that can be won. I have made a submission to council opposing this proposed planning scheme amendment and I encourage Dingley Village residents to do the same.

“The community feel of Dingley Village matters. This development should be rejected and the land retained for open space for generations to come.

First published in the Chelsea Mordialloc Mentone News – 5 September 2018

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