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Yarra River ‘safeguarded’ against overdevelopment

Mr Wynne said the changes to the planning scheme would better protect the river’s “natural landscape, environment and character”.

Planning Minister Richard Wynne (left) with Premier Daniel Andrews and Environment Minister Lily D'Ambrosio at the announcement of interim planning measures for the Yarra in 2017.

Planning Minister Richard Wynne (left) with Premier Daniel Andrews and Environment Minister Lily D’Ambrosio at the announcement of interim planning measures for the Yarra in 2017. Credit:Penny Stephens

“The Yarra River has an important place in the hearts of Victorians and that’s why it’s important these controls remain in place permanently to safeguard its future,” Mr Wynne said.

“These controls will ensure future developments don’t compromise the beauty of our iconic river.”

Figures for the minimum setback and maximum height limits are not part of the controls, with local amenities and conditions to be considered when imposing those requirements.

City of Melbourne councillor Nicholas Reece, who has been campaigning to amend planning schemes to mandate sunshine in public places, welcomed the move to prevent overshadowing of the Yarra River.

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“For decades, Melbourne turned its back on its greatest natural asset, the Yarra River, and only in more recent years has realised the value of the river,” Cr Reece said.

“Unfortunately, protections had not been in place in the past to protect the river, so this is a move all Melburnians should embrace.”

The new permanent planning controls align with the draft Yarra Strategic Plan, the government said in a statement. Community consultation and recommendations from an independent panel will inform the final plan, to be released at the end of the year.

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