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May 2017

BADS In Practice:
What do the new Victorian BADS planning controls mean for the design of apartment buildings?

The Victorian Better Apartment Design Standards (BADS) have now been officially introduced to planning schemes. New apartment developments (except those lodged before 13 April 2017) are now required to meet the requirements of the new Clause 58, or new apartment provisions in Clause 55.07 if they are in a residential zone and lower than five storeys. Notably, the Guidelines for Higher Density Residential Development remain in place, although new Apartment Design Guidelines are slated for May.

The new standards are largely focused on establishing minimum standards of internal amenity. But what are their other consequences for the design of apartment buildings? First, let’s look at the things that won’t change much.

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planning, urban design, bads, better apartment design guide, victoria, housing

Victorian Residential Zones: Reformed or Re-Form

DLA Associate Jonathan Halaliku takes a close look at the new Victorian Residential Zones and asks the key question: are the new Vic res zones sufficiently reformed, or should we be further reforming?

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planning, urban design, vic residential zones, housing, garden city

February 2017

Geoffrey Falk Drawing Training at DLA

Urban design is an integral component of the work we do here at DLA, and it is important to occasionally 'brush up' on the techniques and abilities we employ in urban design - including hand drawing. We were recently lucky enough to be visited by Geoffrey Falk (a renowned local Melbourne-based architect and illustrator whose amazing Melbourne-centric urban sketches have adorned many structure plans, development proposals and visioning materials) who shared his insight on urban sketching and his particular drawing style with the team. 

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drawing, urban design, architecture, melbourne

January 2017

Planning Reforms to Increase Sydney’s Housing Supply

By Julia Moiso, Assistant Planner, David Lock Associates

Changes to NSW planning legislation are being presented by the State Government as a means to increase housing supply in Sydney. The proposed amendments to the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act (EP&A Act) will change the way that development applications are assessed.

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sydney, planning sydney, nsw, planning reforms, housing

New Associates at DLA

David Lock Associates is pleased to announce the promotion of two of our senior staff members to Associate. We would also like to extend a welcome to our most recent employee.

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associates, new hires, planning, melbourne, 2017

December 2016

New Better Apartment Design Standards

Better Apartment Design Standards Released

The Victorian State Government has recently released its final version of the Better Apartment Design Standards (BADS) following exhibition of a hotly-discussed draft set of guidelines exhibitions. Released on Saturday, the new design standards appear to have responded to significant industry feedback (including submissions from DLA) and will influence new apartment development across Melbourne from March 2017 onwards.

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planning, melbourne, apartment, better apartment guidelines, statutory planning

November 2016

Mark Sheppard Commended in PIA 2016 Awards

DLA’s Mark Sheppard was recently commended for his recent publication ‘Essentials of Urban Design’.

‘Essentials of Urban Design’ was described as “impressive”, “practical” and “fundamental” by the PIA VIC Awards Panel. 

The book, released in October 2015 explores the principles of urban design and enables both planners and the community to engage with its content. It further communicates how a respect and understanding of urban design can benefit planning professionals.

A copy of the commendation can be found here.

pia, pia award, urban design, essentials of urban design, mark sheppard

Housing Unaffordability
the Current Crisis

Source: SGS Economics and Planning Rental Affordability Index

By Kirsty Smith, Associate, David Lock Associates

 

This week has seen the release of the national Rental Affordability Index created in Partnership by National Shelter, Community Sector Banking and SGS Economics and Planning. The index confirms that there are more and more people stuck in a cycle of paying ever-increasing rents, with housing costs exceeding 30% of low income households' gross income.

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housing, sydney, affordability, planning

October 2016

Recent Projects

‘One St Kilda Junction’ (8-12 Punt Road and 3-7 Wellington Street, St Kilda)

DLA provided urban design input (including preliminary advice as well as expert urban design evidence services) regarding ‘One St Kilda Junction’. Located at the core of Melbourne’s St Kilda Junction, the approval will locate 286 apartments and a mix of commercial uses across two towers (26 storeys and 10 storeys in height). Designed by Plus Architects, a key feature of the proposal is an architecturally-integrated scrolling electronic advertising billboard that will perpetuate the existing signage character of the Junction. The height of the proposal responds to the ring of existing development surrounding the Junction, as well as the scale of that which exists west of the site along Wellington Street. 

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42 Moray Street and 11-13 Hancock Street, Southbank

DLA is currently providing statutory town planning services regarding the ‘Sol Invictus’ tower at 42 Moray Street and 11-13 Hancock Street, Southbank. The 60 storey mixed-use development proposal contains 341 dwellings as well as critical regional community infrastructure, including childcare facilities, a medical centre and offices. Situated adjacent to the Westgate Freeway, the development forms a part of the broader Southbank Urban Renewal Area and seeks to set a new benchmark for tower development in Melbourne.

The building itself is designed to be a landmark, and to set new benchmarks regarding ESD by way of cutting-edge mechanisms including architecturally-integrated solar panels that will offset a substantial portion of the development’s energy requirements. Myriad public realm upgrades – including offsite pocket parks, freeway underpass upgrades and an architecturally designed pocket plaza - are also proposed as a means of repositioning Southbank as a high quality, enjoyable public destination.

DLA is proud to provide ongoing planning advice and guidance in the this landmark project, which we believe will set a solid precedent for future development in Melbourne.

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NSW Urban Design Reports

DLA provides Urban Design Reports (UDR) in support of development applications or planning proposals. The UDR “tells the story” of the appropriate urban design response to the site and how this has been achieved, primarily in terms of building(s) siting, scale and massing. It assists in explaining how the urban design response is acceptable in the context of the site particularly for developments which seek to contravene current policy controls.

The UDR covers the strategic context of the site from both a spatial and urban design-related policy perspective. It also illustrates the relevant features of the surrounding urban context. It provides an analysis of the existing and emerging character of the site’s surroundings from a physical and policy context. This helps to create ‘Urban Design Principles’ which are used in the assessment of the proposal to show its suitability.

The UDR provides an analysis of the public realm interface of the site and neighbouring properties in terms of off-site amenity impacts and equitable development.

For any enquiries or information regarding preparation for an Urban Design Report, please contact Julia Bell at juliab@dlaaust.com

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For further information on how DLA’s planning team can assist with your town planning or urban design project, contact DLA’s planning team at 03 9682 8568.

planning, urban design, vcat, projects, dla

September 2016

DLA Submission to the Draft ‘Better Apartments’ Guidelines

In the wake of Mark Sheppard’s recent post on the impact of the Victorian State Government’s recently released draft ‘Better Apartments’ design guidelines (and his recent successful industry presentation on behalf of VPELA on 7th September 2016, accessible here), DLA has provided a detailed submission to the design guidelines that acknowledges the need for the introduction of appropriate standards whilst recommending a number of amendments from a planning and design perspective.

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urban design, melbourne, urban planning, state planning, guidelines

June 2016

Future-proofing
Melbourne's Transport
Network

Image source: Tom Loudon @ Flickr

By Amruta Purohit and Kathryn Cuddihy

Transport projects shape the future urban form of cities. The Victorian Government recently allocated $2.4 billion in the 2015-16 Budget to remove 50 of the most dangerous level crossings from the Melbourne network. While the primary aim of any transport project should be the focus on creating benefits for all community members, does this current series of projects go far enough?

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visioning, urban design, healthy cities, transport, transport planning

May 2016

C270 - Observations
and Outcomes

Mark Sheppard recently joined a panel of industry experts at a VPELA event, 'Central City Built Form Controls - innovation or consternation?'

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c270, urban design melbourne, buillding heights

The Changing Face
of Sydney

Image source: SMH

NSW Premier Mike Baird and the Minister for Local Government Paul Toole announced 19 new councils in NSW which commenced 12 May 2016. The Minister has indicated his in principle support to create a further nine new councils, subject to the decision of the courts.

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sydney, council amalgamation, planning, development approvals

PIA Congress 2016:
Inspire, Innovate,
Implement

PIA Congress 2016 has come and gone. The theme of this year's Congress was to inspire, innovate and implement - how our ideas and thoughts can be transformed to reality and implemented.

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pia, planning, david lock associates

Urban Greening
in High Density
Environments

Image Source: Dezeen

High density living is increasingly becoming the norm for the millions of people that want to live in our global cities. People assume that they must give up their connection to nature in order to live in central locations within our cities. However, given the increase in the amount of high rise residential apartments, designers are starting to shift towards locating high density development in locations adjacent to parklands and open spaces and are including tree planting within high density residential developments in city centres creating the “Vertical Forest”.

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planning, vertical forest, high density

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