Endorsement of Draft Helena Valley Urban Expansion Strategy for Advertising
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10.2 Endorsement of Draft Helena Valley Urban Expansion Strategy for
PS.PCT 10 – Helena Valley
Location / Address
See ATTACHMENT 3-1
LPS4 – Various
MRS – Various
Christopher Jennings, Senior Strategic Planning Officer
Mark Luzi, Director Statutory Services
Disclosure of Any
Council is requested to advertise the Draft Helena Valley Urban Expansion
Strategy (HVUES) for public comment.
Draft HVUES is a strategy for future urban growth in Helena Valley in a way
which seeks to accommodate a growing population in a manner which protects
the environment and amenity, improves and provides new infrastructure, and
responds to fire risk and landowner aspirations.
Central to Draft HVUES is an understanding that urban growth and
environmental and amenity protection are not opposing objectives. In most
cases, as with subdivision, urban growth can lead to significant improvements to
the environment, infrastructure, risk mitigation which benefits the wider public.
For clarification, Council is not being asked to provide final approval of the plan at
this stage. This will be sought in mid-2017, after public feedback has been
incorporated into the plan, pursuant to Council’s resolution.
Australian Noise Exposure Forecast
Department of Planning
Helena Valley Landowner Aspiration Survey
Helena Valley Land Use Study
Helena Valley Urban Expansion Strategy
Shire of Mundaring’s Local Planning Strategy
09.08.2016 COUNCIL MEETING CONFIRMED MINUTES
Shire of Mundaring’s Local Planning Scheme No. 4
Metropolitan Region Scheme
The total of all planning legislation, strategies, policies
and guidelines within the Western Australia’s planning
State Administrative Tribunal
Shire of Mundaring
State Planning Policy 5.1 – Land Use Planning in the
Vicinity of Perth Airport
The area covered by HVUES
West Australian Local Government Association
Western Australian Planning Commission
HVUES study area
HVLUS study area
District recreation site context and location
Helena Valley is an urban growth area in the Shire due to its proximity to activity
centres, public transport networks and the availability of utilities and community
The majority of properties in the locality are zoned Urban under the MRS and
have been, or are being, subdivided. Approximately 255 hectares of land zoned
Rural under the MRS has been identified as potentially suitable for further
investigation for urban development.
As well as growth pressures, Helena Valley is also a location of important
environmental, historic, cultural, lifestyle and aesthetic significance – containing
the Helena River, areas of Bush Forever, Local Natural Areas, heritage places
and small rural properties.
As such, many interrelated issues have converged in Helena Valley - including:
proximity to Midland provides an opportunity to create a more sustainable
urban form and assists the State Government to achieve its urban infill
a number of environmental assets are currently held on private properties
with varying degrees of management quality;
objectives to minimise exposure of a future population to bushfire hazard
and linking urban growth to improvement of bushfire risk mitigation efforts;
protection of heritage/cultural places of significance and exposing them to
public use and enjoyment;
existing, disconnected urban cells and the associated issues of movement
and traffic safety;
fragmented land ownership; and
diverse public views regarding concepts like ‘sense of place’ and ‘amenity,
to list a few.
Some of these issues have been explained spatially in ATTACHMENT 3-2.
Purpose of Draft HVUES
Draft HVUES seeks to understand and synthesise these numerous, complex and
interrelated issues and provide a ‘roadmap’ for logical and prudent growth in
Helena Valley for the long-term (2050).
Its current form is one exclusively for the purpose of public comment. It is in a
simple and easy-to-read format, but is based on a rigorous understanding of the
various planning issues and requirements within the study area and the planning
There are six basic components which comprise Draft HVUES:
1. A map of the study area;
2. An overlay of study area showing the extent of the proposed Urban zone,
Urban Deferred zone and Parks and Recreation Reserve under the MRS;
3. A Strategic Infrastructure Plan
4. A Precinct Plan;
5. Precinct Strategies; and
6. Indicative Density and Designs
The following sections of this report:
Describe why Draft HVUES has been prepared in the way it has;
Provides the rationale behind the project scope;
Describe the purpose and outcomes of various technical studies
undertaken to inform Draft HVUES; and
Seek Council consent to advertise.
Importantly, Council should recognise that Draft HVUES is not a request to
rezone properties, a structure plan or subdivision application. Therefore, it does
not concern itself with the details characteristic of these stages.
It is a first, pro-active and strategic step in a much longer process of land
development, involving nominal risk to the Shire.
Perth and Peel @ 3.5 Million & Draft North-East Sub-Regional Planning
Perth’s population is anticipated to grow to 3.5 million by 2050. The WAPC aims
to manage this growth through high level strategic planning - Perth and Peel @
3.5 Million and the Draft North-East Sub-Regional Planning Framework.
These strategies aim to manage population growth by supporting development
09.08.2016 COUNCIL MEETING CONFIRMED MINUTES
Perth and Peel @ 3.5 Million identifies areas in the Shire suitable for growth,
North Parkerville Townsite;
North Stoneville Townsite; and
a portion of 1100 (Lot 800) Katharine Street, Bellevue (Council resolved to
support a structure plan over this area at its meeting of 12 July 2016 –
The Draft North-East Sub-Regional Planning Framework refines the growth
strategies in Perth and Peel @ 3.5 Million for the Shire of Mundaring, Shire of
Kalamunda and the City of Swan. They are as follows:
Avoid, protect and mitigate environmental attributes (with the emphasis on
avoiding and protecting) when allocating proposed land uses;
Develop a consolidated urban form that limits the identification of new
greenfield areas to where they provide a logical extension to the urban
form, and that places a greater emphasis on urban infill and increased
Limited support for new rural residential development, with the emphasis on
areas currently zoned for the purpose;
Avoid areas that are of a high risk of bushfire to manage the potential
impact on people, property and infrastructure;
Provide effective and sustainable management of water resources including
drainage, nutrient management and water allocation to minimise
environmental impacts, recognising a drying climate;
Promote shared infrastructure corridors for transport, community/social and
service infrastructure (where appropriate);
Maximise the use of existing infrastructure, including transport,
community/social and service infrastructure where there is a concentration
of urban and employment opportunities;
Increase the number of people living close to where they work with the
identification of suitable sites for employment within the sub-region, with a
concentration on strategic employment;
Protect employment land from other competing land uses;
Integrate land use and public transport to contribute to maintaining air
Identify ultimate land uses for industrial and public purposes sites, while
promoting access to finite basic raw materials, through the staging and
sequencing of development.
09.08.2016 COUNCIL MEETING CONFIRMED MINUTES
Particular mention is made of tree protection:
The abundance of trees in the ‘hills’ landscape is an important component
of the ‘tree change’ lifestyle which attracts people to the area. Future
development within the sub-region will need to have careful consideration
of these attributes and also address bushfire risks…
The challenge will
to integrate or create design responses to existing environmental and
landscape features (such as significant slopes, wetlands, distinctive
vegetation and view corridors) at more detailed planning stages to
maintain Helena Valley’s sense of place.
Lifestyle factors have also been considered:
A key environmental attribute that attracts population growth in the sub-
region is the hills landscape, with its string of traditional low-density rural
settlements set in undulating agricultural areas with a substantial number
of large remnant trees and pockets of orchards and other more intensive
rural pursuits. These areas will be subject to additional pressure to meet
residential, recreation and tourism demands, while the increased risk of
bushfire in a drying climate also needs to be considered.
The retention of aesthetic, recreational and cultural values is also
Planning and development of the hills landscape will need to be
undertaken in careful consideration of these local and strategic issues.
Importantly, with regards to staging and sequencing:
Development which is not sequential, even when supported by an
approved structure plan, will be expected to have agreed and finalised
funding arrangements with essential service providers in place before
rezoning under a region planning scheme will be considered.
These high-level strategic planning principles have been used to underpin the
more detailed precinct strategies in Draft HVUES.
However, there is an evident disparity between the Draft North-East Sub-
Regional Planning Framework and the Shire’s own LPS.
Local Planning Strategy Background
Before the release of both Perth and Peel @ 3.5 Million and the Draft North-East
Sub-Regional Planning Framework, the WAPC endorsed the Shire’s LPS.
The LPS provides specific strategic planning guidance to the Shire for the next
10-15 years and was adopted by Council on 31 July 2012 (SC5.07.12).
In relation to Helena Valley, the LPS states:
Land between the area rezoned to Urban in MRS Amendment 1160/41
(see ATTACHMENT 3-3) and the smaller residential area to the east,
around the intersection of Helena Valley and Ridge Hills Roads, is
identified in the Foothills Structure Plan as Landscape Protection,
effectively a rural buffer which may include rural residential subdivision
and use…However, it is now appropriate to review this position, in light of
the now recognised need to promote a more compact form of urban
development at the metropolitan level. Parts of this landscape buffer may
be able to accommodate more development (residential or rural
residential), while still retaining some buffer to protect landscape and
Accordingly, this Strategy recommends that a separate study investigate
the potential for closer subdivision, either residential or special
residential (these would require amendment of the MRS) or smaller-
lot rural residential for land north and south of Helena Valley Road,
between the two existing areas of MRS Urban zoned land, but having
strong regard for landscape protection, floodplain management and
protection of watercourses traversing the area.
The Draft North-East Sub-Regional Planning Framework does not identify this
area as one for ‘Urban Investigation’ (refer to ATTACHMENT 3-4). The Shire has
sought an explanation as to why the WAPC’s draft framework does not identify
Helena Valley for Urban Investigation. A response has not yet been provided.
When the WAPC released the Draft North-East Sub-Regional Planning
Framework for public comment, the Shire outlined its concern that it
underestimated the Shire’s growth prospects and was inconsistent with the LPS.
The Shire’s submission gave general support for a strategic approach to growth,
but expressed concern about the exclusion of Helena Valley from the ‘Urban
Investigation’ area and recommended it for inclusion, consistent with the LPS.
A subsequent letter was addressed to the Minister reiterating the Shire’s
concerns and requesting that the Draft North-East Sub-Regional Planning
Strategy be amended to ensure consistency with the LPS.
The Draft North-East Sub-Regional Planning Framework has not yet been
finalised by the WAPC nor has a response been provided by the Minister.
Should the Draft North-East Sub-Regional Planning Framework be finalised in its
current form, it may restrict the Shire or WAPC being able to contemplate urban
growth in Helena Valley pre-2050.
This has created an awkward situation where the Shire is expected to advance a
strategy for urban growth for an area identified for growth in one strategic
planning document but not in another.
The various risk implications of this situation is discussed later in the report.
Local Government Reform
In addition to these planning matters, the WA Liberal Government’s Local
Government Reform agenda delayed the Draft HVUES project.
The Local Government Reform agenda was formally commenced in 2009. In
October 2014, the government announced local government boundary
adjustments and proposed amalgamations.
Relevant to the Shire was a decision to realign the City of Swan’s boundary to
incorporate the Shire of Mundaring. Unexpectedly, the reform agenda was
dropped in February 2015 for the foreseeable future.
As a consequence, the Draft HVUES project was held in abeyance in the lead-up
to local government reform as it was foreseen that Shire projects would be re-
prioritised under City of Swan. That is, it was considered imprudent to continue
resourcing a project that was likely to be reprioritised.
As well as these reforms, the State planning framework continued to undergo a
number of changes affecting the area of land in Helena Valley able to be
considered for urban growth; most significantly, to State Planning Policy 5.1.
State Planning Policy 5.1: Land Use Planning in the Vicinity of Perth Airport
SPP 5.1 is a policy of the WAPC which identifies land use planning controls in
areas affected by aircraft noise. It was reviewed by the WAPC and subsequently
adopted in July 2015. Among its changes was the withdrawal of a plan showing
the ANEF and reference made instead to the latest version of the ANEF on the
Perth Airport Pty Ltd website:
The version of the ANEF in the former SPP 5.1 and that currently maintained by
Perth Airport Pty Ltd are substantially different.
Specifically, the “>25 ANEF” has contracted over Bellevue and Helena Valley
(refer to Figure 1 below).
This has a number of key strategic planning implications on the Shire.
Most significantly, the land able to be considered for Urban development under
the MRS has grown in proportion with the contraction of the “>25 ANEF” contour.
As set out in SPP 5.1 for areas between 20 ANEF and 25 ANEF:
land is identified as appropriate for more intensive development
through strategic planning instruments such as a regional or sub-
regional structure plan;
a higher density coding is desirable to facilitate redevelopment or infill
development of an existing residential area; and
it can be demonstrated that the public benefits of higher density
coding outweigh the negative impacts of exposing additional residents
to aircraft noise.
For land affected by an ANEF greater than 25, the following provision applies:
Under no circumstances should ‘Rural’ or other non-residential zoned land
be rezoned for residential development or any other form of development
involving building types identified as ‘Unacceptable’ with reference to the
building site acceptability table in Appendix 1.
Simply put, additional land in Helena Valley and Bellevue has become potentially
suitable for rezoning to Urban under the MRS as a result of changes to SPP 5.
Since the changes to SPP 5.1 were made after the release of the Shire’s LPS
and the WAPC’s Draft North-East Sub-Regional Structure Plan, such areas have
not been identified in these documents, but reasonably should be identified now.
Therefore, one of the strategies in Draft HVUES is to undertake an amendment
to LPS4 to bring it into conformity with SPP 5.1 by modifying the Special Control
Area related to aircraft noise and investigating the Rural zoned land for an Urban
zone under the MRS.
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