Monday, 18 April 2016

1992: Leichhardt Council Vs The State Government on local development.

Those on the Balmain Peninsula have been critical in plans to redevelop the former wharves at Glebe Island and surrounds along with plans to redevelop the site of the Balmain Leagues Club at Rozelle. In 1992, locals had lost the battle for medium and high density housing to be built at five sites in the area, which were former industrial sites.

  Balmain Power Station development February 22 1992 daily telegraph 2

Source: Scott, S. 1992. "Council loses fight over housing plan". The Daily Telegraph Mirror, February 22:2. 

By the end of the decade, the sites were redeveloped into highrise residential estates like the former Balmain Power Station, which become Balmain Shores.

Above: Balmain Shores. Photos taken by the Author.

The Colgate Palmolive Factory buildings were spared the bulldozer, along with three of the original buildings at the Lever Brothers Site.

However, the scale of the development has to be put into question. It is the density and scale of the buildings. I find the buildings to be too close to each other. You might be better off making them taller and slimmer, but locals would object to that. With highrise buildings, sometimes it is better to increase the height of the building and cut on the bulk. That might have worked. Otherwise I would have suggested a scaling back. However it seems that everyone in Sydney wants their piece of harbourside land and yet have become desirable places to live.

Locals did have a victory of some sort. The Caltex Site at Ballast Point was bought by the State Government in 2002 for $16 million and was converted into a public park.