History lost with VCAT decision
Having considered the recommendation of a Planning Panel, Council has regretfully abandoned a proposed planning scheme amendment that would have individually acknowledged the heritage significance of the historic 1938 Sunshine Boys Hostel.
Chair of Brimbank Administrators John Watson said that having considered the recommendation of a Planning Panel appointed by the Minister for Planning, Council has decided with regret to abandon a proposed planning scheme amendment that would have individually acknowledged the heritage significance of the historic 1938 Sunshine Boys Hostel constructed by the famous Sunshine Architect ‘Headlie Taylor’.
"Not a decision that Council wanted to make"
“This is not a decision that Council wanted to make. However, there was little choice in the matter, as the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) has already approved demolition of the historic dwelling, and directed that a permit be granted for the development of new townhouses on the site.
“Council is disappointed its efforts to save the historic 1938 building have been in vain,” Mr Watson said.
VCAT Approves Demolition
On 14 April 2016, VCAT approved demolition of the dwelling at 129-131 Durham Rd, Sunshine.
“The decision taken by VCAT means Council is unable to further acknowledge the historic importance of the building through an individual heritage overlay.
“The VCAT decision means that the City will lose forever a building from the significant McKay era in Sunshine.
“The building has great cultural and heritage importance because of its connection with Headlie Taylor, who was a key figure in the early history of the area,” Mr Watson said.
VCAT Decision Undermines Process
In August last year, Council refused to grant a planning permit application for demolition and the development of six double storey units at the site. However an appeal was lodged with VCAT against Council’s refusal.
Earlier this year, Council exhibited proposed Amendment C130 to include the building as an individual listing under the heritage overlay.
“While the building was already under heritage protection, Amendment C130 would have recognised its individual heritage significance. Unfortunately, the VCAT decision has undermined this process.
“Whilst the result in this instance is disappointing, Council will continue to pursue the protection of heritage in Brimbank with regular assessments through the yearly heritage scheduled Amendments,” Mr Watson said.