Bays Precinct – Council's guiding principles

These guiding principles were first published by the former Leichhardt Council in November 2015. Inner West Council was formed in May 2016 from a merger of Ashfield, Leichhardt and Marrickville councils.

1. The Bays Precinct provides a unique opportunity to masterplan such a large area in such close proximity to the Sydney CBD. Given the potential National Significance of this site, Council is of the view that the National Government should be formally invited to have representation on the Taskforce.

Governance

2. The plan should ensure that an open, transparent and evidence based approach is adopted, unencumbered by any pre-determined outcomes.

3. The plan should ensure that wherever possible foreshores are retained in public ownership, accessible to the wider community.

4. The plan should include appropriate governance arrangements, in particular in relation to ensuring that the governance arrangements:

  • Involve all stakeholders throughout the process
  • Encourage collaboration between the various levels of government
  • Are maintained over time
  • Include mechanisms that balance the various points of view, for example balancing the view and priorities of those located next to the site and those located further away
  • Investigate and plan issues within the metropolitan context.

5. Learn from previous government decisions and ensure that sites within and adjacent to the Bays Precinct that benefit from the project, make appropriate contributions (financial and otherwise) towards the realisation of the plan.

Environment

6. The entire area should be climate positive – this approach to development is now an established practice across the world, in particular in the case of large scale opportunities such as the Bays Precinct, refer to: http://docklands.com/cs/Satellite?c=VArticle&cid=1240298084981&pagename=VicUrban%2FLayout&site=Docklands

7. Water cycle management should be a key feature of the plan, again it may be useful to have an objective to generate water from the site for the maintenance of surrounding playing fields, parks, reserves and gardens.

8. The plan should explore opportunities for the location of renewable energy and/or decentralised power units (plus associated heating and cooling networks) at strategic points across the site, to serve both the site and surrounding areas.

9. The plan should improve biodiversity and protect, enhance and increase indigenous natural heritage.

10. Environmental testing of soil and groundwater should also include a robust assessment of the:

  • Existing environmental conditions of the sea bead of the Bays Waterways, in particular Rozelle Bay and Blackwattle Bay
  • Existing water quality within the Bays Waterways

Context

11. The plan should respond to the existing geography points, headlands, valleys, and built form – buildings, cuttings, bridge structures etc.

12. The plan should ensure that significant views and view corridors are protected.

13. The plan should ensure that there is a transition from established areas into the Bays Precinct Masterplan area. Common tools include extending replicating street patterns, existing or dominant building forms etc.

14. The plan should respond to existing shared pedestrian and cycle networks and look at the opportunities for knitting suburbs together and extending the networks via the establishment of new/additional connections:

  • Between Balmain and Pyrmont
  • Between Rozelle and Pyrmont
  • Between Leichhardt and Balmain
  • Between Leichhardt and Pyrmont
  • Between Annandale and Rozelle
  • Between Orange Grove and Lilyfield
  • Along the waterfront
  • Between the proposed waterfront promenade back into the adjoining established neighbourhoods
  • Between the Sydney CBD and the Bays Precinct

15. The plan should recognise that the residential areas abutting White Bay berths 1-6 are some of the most sensitive areas of the Bays Precinct and should be afforded due consideration in any master planning process in terms of protecting their amenity.

16. The plan should ensure that future land uses are reflective of their proximity to existing residential areas and the need to protect their amenity from matters such as noise, fumes and odour.

Transport and Traffic

17. The plan should ensure that traffic, parking and transport considerations are properly addressed at the “front end” of the planning process and are integrated into land use considerations.

18. The plan should ensure that the long term use of the area does not result in increased traffic congestion within the surrounding suburbs.

19. The plan should facilitate the integration of pedestrian, bicycle and public transport services.

20. The plan should respond to existing, ferry, bus and light rail services and look at the potential for expanding the existing services.

21. The plan should respond to the existing commuter cycle network and look at the opportunities for extending the network onto and through the area, in particular the establishment of a low level crossing to Pyrmont and the CBD.

22. Reduce the reliance on private motor vehicles within the Bays Precinct and limit the supply of car parking across the Bays Precinct.

23. That in relation to the Waterfront Promenade give consideration to:

  • Age-friendly precincts
  • Accessible points of entry for people with a disability or mobility problems.

24. Give consideration to establishing a physical connection between Wentworth Park and the Harbour.

Social, Recreation and Community Facilities and Infrastructure

25. There is a shortage of active and passive open space within the LGA – Refer Leichardt Recreation and Open Space Needs Study 2005. The plan should consider opportunities for a playing field – comprising a cricket wicket, two soccer pitches and a baseball diamond, a group of tennis/netball courts linked into a network of shared pedestrian and cycle paths.

26. The plan should emphasise the desirability of providing pedestrian access to the harbour shoreline. In this regard the plan should ensure that pedestrian access to the harbour is not unreasonably restricted by future land uses.

27. Quality public domain should be a feature of the plan, comprising a range of finishes – paving, trees and grass etc, suited to the specific locations.

28. The plan should explore options for the retention and expansion of water based sporting opportunities.

29. The plan should ensure that pedestrian access to the harbour is central to future land uses.

30. The plan should ensure that a minimum of 25% of the land area is allocated for community use and amenity (open space and recreation) and that public access to the foreshores is a primary outcome of the Bays Precinct process.

31. The plan should include the timely provision of community infrastructure – e.g. transport, schools, open space and recreation amenities, as it is required, not many years after – if at all.

Heritage

32. The plan should explore the adaptive re-use of heritage buildings, for example the former White Bay Power Station as a renewable energy centre, decentralised energy centre, recycling centre or cultural facility.

33. The plan should facilitate the retention, restoration and utilisation of a number of significant heritage items located within the area, eg the Glebe Island Bridge could be utilised as a new low level pedestrian and cycling crossing from Balmain, Rozelle and Leichhardt to Pyrmont and the CBD.

34. The Bays Precinct area be extended to include Glebe Island Bridge which should also be identified as a “Landmark” on the investigation area map.

Housing

35. The opportunity for locating affordable housing sites at key points within the area should be considered.

36. The plan should improve biodiversity and protect, enhance and increase indigenous natural heritage.

37. The plan should ensure that a minimum of 25% of the land area is allocated for community use and amenity (open space and recreation) and that public access to the foreshores is a primary outcome of the Bays Precinct process.

38. The Bays Precinct area be extended to include Glebe Island Bridge which should also be identified as a “Landmark” on the investigation area map.

39. The plan should include the timely provision of community infrastructure – eg. transport, schools, open space and recreation amenities, as it is required, not many years after – if at all.

40. Provide a range of housing options across the site, including aged housing and drawing upon examples from benchmark sites and developments, provide an appropriate proportion of social housing and rental housing for key workers.

Urban Planning

41. The plan should integrate land use planning and infrastructure so that they support each other and work towards common objectives.

42. The plan should include firm targets for key elements such as affordable housing, open space and sustainability etc. and agreed and widely understood terminology.

43. Maintain and expand the unique range of land uses and activities currently found within the Bays Precinct, for example historical maritime land uses, the heritage fleet, rowing and dragon boating.

44. Where possible, establish a range of employment opportunities that will enliven the Bays Precinct, making it a safe, active and vibrant area throughout the day, seven days a week.

Bays Precinct in General

45. Biodiversity in our urban environment is under pressure from increasing urban density with competing priorities for public open spaces in our parks and reserves and smaller areas for native vegetation landscaping in our residential and commercial and other properties.

46. The Bays Precinct transformation provides the opportunity to develop and implement innovative approaches to protecting and increasing biodiversity in an urban environment. A specific master plan should be developed to provide for the protection and increase of biodiversity in respect of the total area of the Bays Precinct.

47. This should be complemented by the requirement to complete a plan for each site in the Bays Precinct which sets out measures for protecting and increasing biodiversity in respect of that site. This includes sites for residential, commercial, recreation, heritage and other purposes in addition to specific sites designed as natural heritage conservation areas.

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Page last updated: 21 Nov 2018