The Melrose Park Precinct is located on the eastern boundary of the Parramatta LGA, approximately 7km east of the Parramatta CBD. Approximately 55 hectares in size, the precinct is divided into northern and southern parts, with Hope Street dividing the two. The northern part is bound by Victoria Road to the north, Wharf Road to the east, Hope Street to the south and Hughes Avenue to the west.
The southern part is approximately 20 ha in size and is bound by Hope Street to the north, Wharf Road to the east, Parramatta River to the south, and Atkins Road to the west. The Precinct is referred to as Melrose Park, however it also incorporates a portion of Ermington along the western edge.
Planning for the redevelopment of this precinct has been occurring since 2016 and has involved consultation between Council, landowners, applicants and various Government agencies.
Reason for change(Back to top)
Land use needs in Sydney have changed significantly over the years with many existing industrial areas are no longer considered suitable or viable for continued industrial operations. Melrose Park is one area that has experienced a decline in recent years due to the restructuring of the pharmaceutical manufacturing industry, which is progressively relocating its operations off-shore or to larger industrial parks.
These companies were located within large purpose-built warehouses that are difficult to adapt for other uses. This combined with other factors such as distance from major arterial transport corridors and the close proximity to residential areas means that the precinct is no longer considered suitable for industrial uses and therefore presents a good opportunity for urban renewal.
Past planning work(Back to top)
Employment Lands Strategy
To respond to the changing nature of industrial lands, the City of Parramatta Council undertook an Employment Lands Study in 2015/2016, which was used to inform the subsequent Employment Lands Strategy (ELS). This Strategy reviewed all Employment Lands within the Parramatta LGA and provides a consolidated set of land use planning Actions for these areas.
Melrose Park Precinct is Precinct 11 in the ELS and identifies the precinct as being suitable for redevelopment for non-industrial uses. The ELS only reviewed the existing industrial land in the precinct which is coloured grey in the image below. A requirement of the ELS is that a Structure Plan be prepared before any changes to the planning controls in the precinct can occur. The ELS was reviewed in 2020 and is available to view using the link below.
A Structure Plan is a high-level planning document that is intended to act as a guide for future development in a particular area and must be prepared to allow a coordinated approach to redevelopment. Unlike a Planning Proposal, a Structure Plan does not have the ability to rezone land or change any planning controls such as building heights and floor space ratios. Instead, it provides an overview of where infrastructure such roads, open space and retail centres may be located. It also provides some indication of densities, similar to a Master Plan.
In mid-2016 it was decided to split the precinct into northern and southern parts to enable better management of the planning process. The Northern Structure Plan was adopted by Council December 2016 and the Southern Structure Plan adopted by Council in December 2019.
Transport Management & Accessibility Plan
Traffic and transport issues were identified as a key consideration early in the planning process for the entire precinct (both north and south) and as a result, Jacobs Consulting was commissioned by key northern precinct landowner, Payce, to prepare a Transport Management and Accessibility Plan (TMAP) for the precinct. A TMAP is a detailed traffic and transport study that examines the existing traffic, parking and road network conditions and public transport services for an identified area. It then makes recommendations regarding the required road infrastructure upgrades, such as intersection improvements and road widening, and identifies the required public transport improvements needed to support the area relative to the anticipated future growth. The preparation of the TMAP was also a condition of the Gateway determination associated with the Melrose Park North Planning Proposal.
A project group was created to monitor and provide input into the TMAP process. The project group comprised of stakeholders from Council, State agencies including Transport for NSW (TfNSW) and the Department of Planning and Environment (DPE), and applicants from the northern (Payce) and southern (Holdmark and Goodman) precincts. The group was facilitated by the DPE. The TMAP was completed in January 2019 and has been endorsed by TfNSW. It is required to be used as a supporting technical document for all Planning Proposals within the precinct, in addition to the standard site-specific traffic and transport impact assessments that are submitted with Planning Proposal applications.
The TMAP identifies that the precinct (north and south) can accommodate up to 11,000 dwellings providing the required infrastructure is delivered as included in the Implementation Plan. The Implementation Plan specifies when the new infrastructure is required to be delivered/in place relative to the number of dwellings in the precinct. These are known as trigger points. The key trigger point is the bridge to Wentworth Point. Without the bridge, the number of dwellings that can be delivered across the entire precinct (north and south) is limited to 6,700. Should a bridge be constructed then the maximum 11,000 dwellings can be supported. This is providing all the other required infrastructure is also delivered.
The required infrastructure will be funded through a combination of local and State Planning Agreements between developers and Council (local Planning Agreement), developers and the State Government (State Planning Agreement), and development contributions. Local Planning Agreements typically include infrastructure that will directly service the needs of the Melrose Park residents, such as open space and community centres, whereas the State Planning Agreements typically include contributions to the infrastructure that will be utilised on a broader regional scale, such as upgrades to major roads and schools.
Current planning work(Back to top)
To enable redevelopment to occur, the land is required to be rezoned to permit non-industrial land uses. This is done through a Planning Proposal, which amends the Parramatta Local Environmental Plan (LEP) 2011. The Planning Proposal is a statutory process and needs to be done in accordance with the requirements of Environmental Planning & Assessment Act 1979 and Environmental Planning and Assessment Regulation 2000.
The Planning Proposal process requires detailed assessment of the proposed changes which involves comprehensive consultation between Council staff, the applicant and State agencies to ensure the best outcome is achieved. Engagement with the public is also undertaken at predetermined stages of the Planning Proposal process to seek feedback from the community before any final decisions are made.
Redevelopment of the northern precinct is more advanced than the southern precinct. The major landowner within the northern part of the precinct is Payce, who own approximately 85% of the land. The major landowner in the southern precinct is Holdmark, who own just under 50% of the land.
Melrose Park North Planning Proposal
Council reference: RZ/1/2016
DPIE reference: PP-2020-1983
The Melrose Park North Planning Proposal applies to land at 8, 38-42, 44 & 44A Wharf Road, Melrose Park, 15-19 & 27-19 Hughes Avenue and 655 Victoria Road, Ermington. These sites are owned by three separate landowners and their respective planning proposals have been combined to form the Melrose Park North Planning Proposal. The land subject to this proposal is outlined in yellow in the below image.
The process also involves the preparation of a Site-Specific Development Control Plan (DCP) which contains detailed design controls specific to the precinct. Developers will also be required to contribute towards the delivery of community infrastructure in the precinct through Planning Agreements or Section 7.11/7.12 development contributions or a combination of both.
Council resolved to endorse the Planning Proposal, site-specific DCP and Planning Agreement at its meeting of 11 October 2021. To view the Minutes from this meeting, please visit Council’s Business Paper page.
The Planning Proposal has been forwarded to the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment for finalisation.
The Payce Planning Agreement will now progress through the legal process and be registered on Title.
Council officers are currently negotiating Planning Agreements for the remaining two sites within the Planning Proposal area at 8 Wharf Road and 15-19 Hughes Avenue & 655 Victoria Road.
Finalisation of the Planning Proposal is expected to occur and the end of 2021/early 2022.
The site-specific DCP for Melrose Park North will be included within Section 4.3. – Strategic Precincts of the existing Parramatta DCP 2011 and come into effect on the date that the Planning Proposal amendment to the Parramatta Local Environmental Plan 2011 is published on the NSW Legislation website and comes into force.
The two remaining Planning Agreements will be exhibited in 2022.
Please email email@example.com if you have any questions regarding this project.
Holdmark Planning Proposal
Council reference: RZ/1/2020
DPIE reference: PP-2020-4038
This Proposal applies to two separate sites owned by Holdmark at 112 Wharf Road and 30 & 32 Waratah Street, Melrose Park (East site) and 82 Hughes Avenue, Ermington (West Site). The sites are highlighted yellow in the below image.
The Proposal intends to redevelop the site from industrial to a mix of R4 High Density Residential and RE1 Public Recreation. The overall dwelling yield is approximately 1,925 units (835 units on the East site, 1,090 units on the West site). Building heights are proposed to range from 8 storeys (34m), 12 storeys (45m) and 22 storeys (77m) on both sites, with lower heights on the perimeter of the sites and upper heights in the centre.
A Gateway determination was received from the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment (DPIE) in August 2021 which now enables the Planning Proposal to proceed to public exhibition. Council officers are currently preparing the accompanying draft site-specific Development Control Plan (DCP) and negotiating the Planning Agreement with the applicant.
The draft site-specific DCP and Planning Agreement will be reported to Council in 2022 seeking endorsement to proceed to public exhibition. Should Council endorse the draft DCP and Planning Agreement for exhibition, they will be exhibited together with the Planning Proposal. Further updates on the timing of the Council report and public exhibition will be provided when known.