UPDATE: 30 August – Planning Panel to meet 12 September:
The next, and possibly final, Planning Panel meeting to determine the fate of this historic cottage will take place on Wed 12 September from 5pm at the Mantra Hotel, Valentine St, Parramatta. There are six items in front of the Panel that night so it could be a long night! The papers (including the council recommendation on the cottage site DA) are now available here
We have also attached the key Council paper here. Yet again, council staff are siding with the developer to help them get this DA passed. The heritage issues are dismissed, and the focus is on reducing on site car parking – to a rate below one space per unit. The theory is that this will ease traffic but is the reality just that people will end up using surrounding streets to park their cars?
WE NEED YOUR HELP! The Trust wants to show the Planning Panel that the demolition of the cottage is totally opposed by this community. Locals have rallied, signed petitions, written submissions and attended meeting. Council has now passed a resolution in support of retention of the cottage. Now it is time to show the members of the panel that we still support the cottage. Please attend the meeting.
Council Resolution: – 13 August:
The City of Parramatta Council were presented with the community’s petition (signed by more than 1,500 people) at the council meeting on 13 August. It was tabled by Cllr Lorraine Wearne and she also tabled a motion for action by council on the demolition proposal before the next Planning Panel meeting decides its fate.
There followed a lively debate with a wide range of councillors voicing support for preserving the area’s heritage items and encouraging council to take a range of actions. The motion was increased and expanded during debate and the final wording was approved unanimously:
(a) That Council receive and note the petition on 1500 signatories and a copy be provided to the Planning Panel.
(b) That Council request that the Planning Panel be requested to review the (2) private heritage reports obtained by the Epping Civic Trust and an independent heritage expert in the local community as part of their deliberations.
(c) That if despite the above, the Panel approves the DA, Council consider seeking legal advice regarding an appeal against the decision.
(d) That all Councillors be forwarded a copy of the petition.
(e) That this be sent to the panel within the next 48 Hours.
(f) Further, that Council formally advises the Panel that Council strongly oppose the DA for the following reasons: –
1. There are contradictory views of the heritage cottage that have been provided in expert reports.
2. The Community value of cottage is of extreme importance and is in the public interest to be retained.
3. Council sees itself as the custodian of heritage items in the City and this item should be preserved as another fine example of Parramatta Heritage.
4. That the developer be encouraged to consider other development options for this site – the amalgamation of the site, increased height to preserve the heritage item.
The DA will be coming up to the Planning Panel again in September so it is now essential that the council acts fast on these motions. The community is watching.