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Arden precinct plan firms up

Planning is nearing completion on the new bike-friendly precinct to be developed above and around the new underground Metro station in North Melbourne.

The first draft of the new suburb was done in 2016 and envisaged a low-car suburb with dense residential and employment development and easy access to public and active transport.

In the latest draft this has been balanced by a strong focus on open space and community facilities.

And the plans set a precinct target of zero net emissions by 2040 and include 6 Star Green Star energy policy for new developments.

Now the Victorian Planning Authority is seeking public comment on the latest plans before they formally proceeded as amendment to the planning scheme and become law.

You can peruse the (very) extensive documentation and make your submission here.

Among the planning changes is the utilisation of stormwater management open space in Arden North to change its shape and serve as a sports oval during dry periods.

The 46-hectare Arden precinct lies west of North Melbourne’s established residential area and south of the Macaulay urban renewal precinct.

A structure plan was first prepared for Arden and the adjoining Macaulay precincts in 2012 by the City of Melbourne.

The precinct will have some of the highest levels of access the public transport in Australia.

Car parking will be limited to help meet the objective of no more than 10 percent of travel by private car.

Residences will be required to have one bike parking space per bedroom.

The Background report says: 'Planning for Arden will facilitate the delivery of cycling infrastructure to strengthen connections in the local and Strategic Cycling Corridor networks creating a safer, well-connected and more convenient network for all users.

"There are four proposed Strategic Cycling Corridors within Arden. These corridors are designated by the Victorian Government, to improve cycling to and from major activity centres.

"The corridors cater for the highest cycling volumes, while offering physical protection from motor vehicles so that people of all ages and abilities can confidently use bicycles to travel the precinct.

"These proposed corridors will be considered for inclusion as part of the future-revision to the Victorian Government’s Strategic Cycling Corridor network.

"The draft Arden planning scheme amendment through a proposed Development Contributions Plan will also facilitate delivery of a dense network of protected local cycling corridors on Fogarty Street, Henderson Street, Boundary Road (south of Macaulay Road), Macaulay Road and Victoria Street to complement the proposed Strategic Cycling Corridors and provide bicycle access to destinations within the precinct."

This article was made possible by the support of Bicycle Network's members who enable us to make bike riding better in Australia.