OBJECTORS to a planned 14-storey tower on Nepean Highway say it will “divide” Frankston’s city centre and the beach.
Frankston Council granted a conditional permit for the development at 446-450 Nepean Highway at last month’s council meeting. The final fate of the 14-storey mixed use building is likely to be determined at VCAT, although The Times understands that an appeal has not yet been lodged.
Council received 16 objections to the proposal when putting it out for consultation. Former Kananook Creek Association president Rob Thurley says the building will “create a great wall of high rise right on the waterfront, which will divide the waterfront and the town centre.”
“This is the antithesis of the near two decade planning of Frankston as a regional activity centre while protecting the renowned waterfront precinct,” he said. “Without any mandatory height limits, in effect the structure planning is a shambles. Out of the hands of the council and community, and outcomes determined by the luck of the draw at VCAT.”
In a submission to council, Thurley compared the development to the South East Water building.
Frankston mayor Nathan Conroy said that before council considered the proposal, it had notified residents “in the form of mail to adjoining owners and occupiers and two signs were erected, one at each road frontage”. It also held a meeting with objectors to the plans.
The 2022 draft FMAC structure plan was used by council officers to determine whether the building would be appropriate. The plan has only been adopted in draft form, and is not expected to be implemented in the near future. Conroy said that council had used this plan because “council is required to consider all planning applications and is unable to prevent an application being determined due to a potential change in policy. In addition, an applicant can lodge an appeal at VCAT if council fails to assess a planning application within a 60 statutory day timeframe.”
“The planning assessment was undertaken against both the FMAC structure plan 2015, which is a referenced document in the Frankston Planning Scheme, and the draft FMAC structure plan 2022,” he said.
The building is expected to contain 94 apartments and a licensed restaurant able to trade each day from 11am to 11pm. It is proposed that the development have a maximum height of 49 metres to the top of the lift overrun. The 2022 draft FMAC structure plan states that the preferred maximum building height in that precinct is 41 metres.