Cremorne Place Implementation Plan
The Victorian Planning Authority (VPA) has released the Cremorne Place Implementation Plan (PDF) (the plan) to guide the development of Cremorne as a thriving global innovation precinct.
The plan was developed in partnership with the City of Yarra, in consultation with the Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions (DJPR) and Department of Environment, Land Water and Planning (DELWP) and the Cremorne community. It will ensure the growth and development of this precinct builds on the strengths that have made Cremorne such an attractive destination for startups and enterprises.
The plan sets a long term vision for Cremorne as a global innovation precinct with a vibrant village feel. It guides how the precinct should develop to support high-tech, innovative enterprises and investment while building on its unique attributes and location.
It provides a high-level vision for the future of Cremorne that reflects input from the communities that live, work and invest there; and a prioritised set of projects that will deliver that vision.
The goal of the plan is to ensure State Government and council resources for priority projects reflect the priorities of the community. It consolidates and builds on plans and reports that have been prepared by State Government and council over recent years.
The plan will guide investment and development in Cremorne according to four themes:
- economy and innovation
- transport and movement
- public and open space
- buildings and development.
This will not only support Cremorne’s continued success as an epicentre for economic activity, it will also ensure the suburb remains a vibrant and attractive destination for the residents, workers and investors who form its community.
We have handed the plan to the Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions, which will now lead the Victorian Government’s investment and support for the precinct’s development.
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The Victorian Planning Authority (VPA) and Yarra City Council are partnering with key state agencies to ensure Cremorne’s continued success as a place to live and work. The VPA and council will liaise with various stakeholders, including local business owners, residents and other government agencies – as well as the local community – to ensure planning for this project has input from a wide range of people who are invested in Cremorne’s ongoing success.
Cremorne is a key destination for local and global high technology companies. The suburb encompasses residential neighbourhoods nestled amongst the rapidly changing commercial areas. With good access to public transport, nearby activity centres such as Swan Street in Richmond and a rich industrial and residential heritage, it is a unique place in metropolitan Melbourne.
In the wake of increased development investment in both commercial and residential premises, workers and residents have campaigned for better amenity within the area and coordination of government activity, including improvements to public spaces, accessibility and sustainable practices.
Responding to these challenges and opportunities, the Minister for Planning, the Honourable Richard Wynne MP, has instructed the Victorian Planning Authority to prepare a Place Implementation Plan (the Plan) for Cremorne. The goal of the Plan is to mobilise State Government and council support and resources for priority projects ensuring that these reflect the priorities of the community. Project lead agencies are supported by government departments with a stake in Cremorne.
We have the opportunity to shape the new buildings, build the case for infrastructure investment and harness a net community benefit from development. The benefits of development can be shared by residents, businesses, workers and institutions.
The Cremorne Place Implementation Plan will ensure Cremorne reaches its potential as a creative hub that is liveable, vibrant and has great amenity. The Plan will examine the issues of safety, transport and parking, open space, business and commercial spaces and public realm. The Cremorne Place Implementation Plan will also seek to retain and enhance the qualities that have attracted businesses and residents.
The Cremorne Place Implementation Plan (the Plan) will provide:
- a high-level vision for the future of Cremorne that reflects input from the communities that live, work and invest there; and
- a prioritised set of projects that will deliver that vision.
The goal of the Plan is to ensure State Government and council resources for priority projects reflect the priorities of the community. The indicative costs and benefits of priority projects will be the basis for ranking projects and progressing these with the responsible entities.
The Plan will consolidate and build on plans and reports that have been prepared by State Government and council over recent years. It will identify any gaps in the evidence or policy and make recommendations as to whether or how these gaps should be filled.
The Plan will not provide a land use plan or structure plan for Cremorne, nor will it deliver specific project outputs such as designs, detailed costings, feasibilities or business cases.
Issues and Opportunities Paper
The paper identifies issues and opportunities in Cremorne. Community input is sought on the paper to prepare a vision and action plan that shapes future development and investment in Cremorne. It explores opportunities and potential actions under the following themes:
- Economy and Innovation
- Public and Open Space
- Buildings, and
- Transport and Movement.
The Issues and Opportunities Paper will help inform a draft Cremorne Place Implementation Plan that will also be put out for community comment in the coming months. The Cremorne Place Implementation Plan will provide a high-level vision for the future of Cremorne that reflects input from the communities that live, work and invest there. Together, we will prioritise a set of projects that will deliver that vision.
The paper builds on research and community engagement that has informed a number of plans and reports prepared by State Government and council over recent years. These include:
- a range of council adopted policies and strategies
- Victorian Government policies and strategies
- technical background reports
- site investigations
- workshops observations
- previous consultation with stakeholders.
A key purpose of the Issues and Opportunities Paper is to review existing studies and their findings. Through public engagement, we want to check with the community that the information is up-to-date and reflective of the Cremorne context today.
Roles and Responsibilities
The Cremorne project is jointly led by the Victorian Planning Authority (VPA), City of Yarra and in partnership with other state government agencies.
The VPA and City of Yarra will work together with local residents, business owners, workers and other government agencies to ensure Cremorne’s continued success as a place to live and work. We want to capture input from a wide range of people who are invested in Cremorne’s ongoing success.
- City of Yarra is the planning authority for the precinct, responsible for facilitating amendments to the Yarra Planning Scheme and for issuing planning permits.
- The Victorian Planning Authority is a state government statutory authority that reports to the Minister for Planning and is developing the Cremorne Place Implementation Plan.
Other state agencies directly involved with the project include:
- Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions – the state government agency responsible for ensuring Victoria’s strong economic performance by growing industries and regions.
- The Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning – the state government department that reports to the Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change and is responsible for facilitating liveable, inclusive and sustainable communities and thriving natural environments.
- Department of Transport – the state government agency which focuses on building and operating an integrated, sustainable and safe transport system for Victoria.
- VicTrack – the state government agency which focuses on strategic asset management and supporting the delivery of better transport solutions.
Cremorne is strategically located approximately 2 km southeast of Melbourne CBD within the Yarra municipality.
- The internal areas are characterised by a mix of commercial, residential, retail and industrial land uses, with access concentrated around Balmain Street and Cremorne Street.
- Directly west is Melbourne’s Sports and Entertainment Precinct with a strong presence of sports stadiums and venues.
- To the north is Richmond train station, and an array of entertainment options and local services in the Swan Street Major Activity Centre.
- Within the eastern part of the precinct lies the Church Street shopping area including a host of retail and food and beverage options. Beyond lies the Barkly Gardens public open space.
- To the south is the Yarra River and Capital City Trail, the Botanical Gardens and the retail offering of the Chapel Street Major Activity Centre. Public transport can be accessed via South Yarra Train Station.
The study area of Cremorne Enterprise Precinct covers approximately 72 hectares of land and is generally bounded by:
- Punt Road to the west,
- the railway line along Richmond and East Richmond Station to the north,
- the commercial zoned land on the east side of Church Street to the east, and
- Citylink to the south.
Under the recent Government policy Unlocking Enterprise in a Changing Economy (2018), Cremorne has been termed as an ‘enterprise precinct’. A future opportunity for Cremorne includes formally recognising Cremorne as an ‘enterprise precinct’ in the planning policy framework of the Yarra Planning Scheme.
As noted by the Brookings Institute, an American research institute, enterprise precincts are considered to: “facilitate the creation and commercialisation of new ideas and support metropolitan economies by growing jobs in ways that leverage their distinct economic attributes. These districts build on and revalue the intrinsic qualities of cities: proximity, density, authenticity, and vibrant places.”
Zones are the primary tools for setting expectations about what land use and development activity may be acceptable. Each zone deals with a particular land use theme, such as residential, commercial, industrial or public.
As per the Yarra Planning Scheme, there are currently eight planning zones that apply to Cremorne Enterprise Precinct;
- Commercial 2 Zone – C2Z
- Neighbourhood Residential Zone – NRZ
- Public Use Zone -PUZ
- Road Zone – RZ
- General Residential Zone – GRZ
- Comprehensive Development Zone – CDZ
- Commercial 1 Zone – C1Z
Understanding the previous vision statements prepared for Cremorne provides a good starting point to test the relevance in a current and future context.
The existing Cremorne and Church Street Urban Design Framework 2007 developed by the City of Yarra identifies the following vision objectives:
- Recognise and maintain the mixed urban grain and character of the precinct, where a range of building forms and typologies co-exist, complemented by a variety of industry and commercial activities, intermingled with residential development.
- Maintain and enhance the role of the precinct as a successful business hub, while recognising and acknowledging the rich mix of uses in the precinct, in particular existing dwellings.
- Encourage and provide opportunities for the redevelopment of underutilised former industrial sites within the precinct, while protecting the amenity of low-rise residencies and recognising their contribution to the valued character of the area.
- Support and work in partnership with the State Government towards the redevelopment of the Bendigo Kangan Institute complex to strength its role as the key activity and community hub and a ‘heart’ for Cremorne, including high quality public open spaces and plazas.
- Create new and reinforce existing pedestrian and cycle links throughout Cremorne and to the key transport hubs serving the precinct and improve access to the nearby Yarra River and regional public open spaces.
- Maintain and protect the sense of community within the neighbourhood by improving streetscape quality and treating them as public spaces and limiting through traffic in the area.
A set of vision objectives will be tested with the resident and worker community during the engagement phase to develop a community-supported vision for the draft Cremorne Place Implementation Plan.