Independent panel supports Nanga Gnulle heritage overlay plan, paving way for future subdivision vote

THE long-running attempt to subdivide the gardens of former Strathdale wedding venue Nanga Gnulle could pass another hurdle at next week’s council meeting.

Other matters up for debate include plans to convert the former All Saints school on MacKenzie Street into a function centre and tavern, a billboard proposal for Kangaroo Flat, the council’s Hard Court Strategy and the Municipal Emergency Flood Plan.

A warehouse and cafe proposed for Abel Street in Golden Square is likely to be rejected, while Bronze Drive residents in Kangaroo Flat could receive extra tree plantings to reduce noise from Olympic Parade.

1. Nanga Gnulle subdivision passes independent panel

The subdivision of the expansive gardens of former Strathdale wedding venue Nanga Gnulle has passed another hurdle after an independent panel only recommended minor changes to the council’s heritage overlay plans.

Plans to subdivide the gardens of the 1.9 hectare property on Harley Street into 15 blocks attracted a range of objections, but was supported by the City of Greater Bendigo after a review found the gardens did not contain heritage significance.

The mud brick homestead itself – built using recycled material from across the region – will be subject to a heritage overlay.

The matter was sent to an independent panel which sat in March, finding the gardens should not be included in the heritage overlay, paving the way for the subdivision.

The panel recommended an extension to the curtilage to the rear boundary.

It considered 10 submissions in opposition to the plan.

City of Greater Bendigo officers recommended the council approve the heritage overlay, which would then be sent to the Planning Minister for final approval. A vote on the subdivision will occur at a later date.

2. All Saints Anglican site set for function centre conversion

Plans to convert the old All Saints Anglican school and master’s residence into a tavern and function centre have gained the support of the council’s planning department.

The $1 million development on MacKenzie Street received 13 objections, including issues with the use of adjoining View Lane for access, the number of patrons allowed, the potential for loitering and the loss of footpath space. The use of View Lane has since been altered.

All Saints on MacKenzie Street in central Bendigo could become a function centre and tavern, including alfresco dining.

All Saints on MacKenzie Street in central Bendigo could become a function centre and tavern, including alfresco dining.

The tavern – proposed to be called Batty’s Bar – could host up to 80 patrons while the function centre plans to host a maximum of 175 people.

Planning officers found that the proposal is based in an established commercial area, so there was greater leeway for noise and amenity.

Waiving the requirement for car parks has also been recommended, while the hours of operation of the courtyard could be reduced from 1am to 10pm.

The Anglican Diocese of Bendigo sold the property to a Coburg-based individual for $1.05 million in 2014.

3. Kangaroo Flat billboard plan could go to VCAT

A proposal to place a nine-metre by three-metre billboard on top of a business in Kangaroo Flat has already been sent to the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal after the council failed to make a decision in time.

The sign proposed for the intersection of High and Camp streets, Kangaroo Flat.

The sign proposed for the intersection of High and Camp streets, Kangaroo Flat.

The plans involve placing the south-facing billboard on top of Ultimate Tyre and Auto at the busy intersection of High and Camp streets.

The sign is proposed to be electronic to broadcast still or moving images.

Council officers found the sign was significantly larger than other raised signs in the area and was not in fitting with the character of the area. They believed the sign would have an adverse impact on an adjoining barber shop.

The council is now preparing its case for VCAT.

It is not the only sign slated for refusal by the council this month.

The council is also likely to reject an advertising sign proposed for the Midland Highway in Goornong, which is also set for VCAT.

4. Minor works to allay Bronze Drive resident concerns

The increasingly busy Olympic Parade in Kangaroo Flat has become a growing concern for residents of the nearby Bronze Drive, who have petitioned the council to do something about the noise.

The council believed solid fencing between properties and a small reserve alongside Olympic Parade was the best way to reduce noise.

Extra plantings will be carried out in the reserve to further allay concerns, while central lane marking is proposed for Bronze Drive to improve safety.

Residents had instead wanted traffic mirrors, given the road has two sharp 90-degree bends.

5. Hard Court Strategy, Flood Plan to go before council

The council will attempt to prioritise the upgrade and maintenance of its 221 outdoor netball and tennis courts after the completion of a Hard Court Strategy.

It found a shortage of lit courts and adequate amenities for female athletes, while many others are locked up and get minimal use due to an oversupply of courts in sparsely-populated areas.

Following extensive consultation with all clubs in the Bendigo area, three changes were made to the strategy including greater collaboration with sporting clubs, greater clarity in prioritising works, and to consider socio-economic disadvantage as a priority.

The Municipal Emergency Flood Plan will also be considered at the meeting, and will be implemented immediately if approved.

Read the full agenda here:

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