The National Capital Authority (NCA) has released National Capital Plan Draft Amendment 97 – Block 7 Section 4 Yarralumla (former Australian Forestry School) (DA97) for public consultation.
Key changes to the National Capital Plan (the Plan) proposed by DA97 include:
Block 7 Section 4 Yarralumla (the site) is owned by Gunyar Pty Ltd (Gunyar) as trustee for the Gunyar ACT Properties Trust. The Shepherd Foundation is a charitable institution that supports children with hearing loss learn to listen and speak, and is beneficiary of the Trust.
On 1 April 2021, Oakstand Pty Ltd (Oakstand) of behalf of Gunyar advised the NCA that they would seek an amendment to the Plan to change the land use policy of Block 7 Section 4 Yarralumla to allow for a mix of uses on the site. The NCA conducted an initial community engagement process to seek the views of key stakeholders and gauge initial community views on the redevelopment proposal, throughout August and September 2021.
In October 2021, the NCA Board considered the outcomes of the initial community engagement process. As a result of this consideration, the proponent was invited to present a revised scheme that reduced the building scale and which was consistent with nearby developments (the old Canberra Brickworks). The proponent was also asked to reconsider the mix of land uses.
In May 2022, the proponent submitted a revised development proposition and request to amend the Plan. The plans submitted at this time showed development limited to not more than 3 storeys (plus attic, consistent with the direction provided by the NCA.
In October 2022, the NCA Board agreed that a draft amendment to the Plan could be prepared for Block 7 Section 4 Yarralumla to:
In June 2023, representatives of the Yarralumla Residents Association (YRA) presented to the NCA Board their views concerning the proposed redevelopment of the site. Oakstand subsequently presented to the NCA Board at their meeting in August 2023 to address concerns of the YRA.
In October 2023, the NCA Board agreed to release DA97 for public consultation.
Block 7 Section 4 Yarralumla is a crescent-shaped parcel of land, around 10.9 hectares in size, located on the western edge of the suburb of Yarralumla. The site abuts the Royal Canberra Golf Club and is in close proximity to the Yarralumla shops. The Old Canberra Brickworks, to be redeveloped predominantly for residential purposes, is located to the south-west of the site. Westridge House is located to the north of the site. The figure below shows the site in this context.
Since establishment of Canberra as the National Capital, the site has been used for a number of uses, associated generally with forestry and related scientific research. From 1927 to 1968, the Australian Forestry School operated from the site, and from 1968 to 1975 the site was utilised by the Forestry and Timber Bureau.
The Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) acquired the site in 1975 and established a Division of Forest Research. This became the Division of Forestry and Forest products in 1988, the Division of Forestry in 1991 and in 1996 the Division of Forestry and Forest products. The site was sold in 2002 and leased back to CSIRO for 20 years.
CSIRO is currently in the process of consolidating facilities in Canberra and vacated the Yarralumla site in 2022. Small private sector offices continue to occupy some buildings on the site.
Policy proposed by DA97 is intended to:
These points are proposed to be included as objectives for the site in the Plan. The proposed detailed provisions of planning, design and development contain provisions that if met, will support achievement of the objectives.
The drawing below illustrates the indicative site masterplan.
DA97 proposes the following key planning and design policies:
Further details regarding all changes proposed by DA97 can be found in the Draft Amendment document available to download below. Frequently Asked Questions are also available to download below.
Options to get involved or obtain further information include:
Please indicate your attendance by emailing email@example.com.
The NCA welcomes written comments on DA97 from interested parties as part of the consultation process.
Submissions to DA97 can be:
Submissions are invited until Friday 22 December 2023.
Please note that the NCA will also be considering community comment made via social media and other online platforms
For further information on DA97 please email firstname.lastname@example.org