Council investigates Ascot unit development

THE City of Greater Bendigo has begun an investigation into the proposed Howard Street development in Ascot. 

Manager of planning Ross Douglas said an investigation had been launched on the property after a fire notice was issued to the developer. 

The notice was issued after grass on the land had grown too long.

Mr Douglas said despite the developer taking action on the land, investigations would continue with results expected next week. 

Developer Ethan Affordable Housing had proposed to build 29 rental units at Howard Street, but in October the council knocked back the plans. 

The developer is taking the matter to the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal, with an official hearing planned for February 15 next year. 

Residents in the area believed the proposed development on the one acre block would not be in keeping with the character of the neighbourhood. 

Concerned neighbour Andrea Metcalf told the Bendigo Advertiser that machinery had been working on the site all week. 

“Top soil has been put on and people (have been) working on the land,” she said. 

“No planning permit has been issued so no one should be working on the land.”

Ethan Affordable Housing chief executive Ashley Fenn said they had cleared the block and complied with what the City of Greater Bendigo had asked of them. 

A provisional hearing was also held yesterday in Melbourne to decide whether or not a Cultural Heritage Management Plan was needed to be issued before the official hearing.

However, a decision on the matter had not been released. 

A Cultural Heritage Management Plan is an assessment of the potential impact of the proposed activity on Aboriginal cultural heritage.

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