Achievements

This term on Council, motions and proposals by your Greens Councillors have:

Planning

  • Created new planning controls in the ‘Macaulay’ section of North Melbourne to provide incentives for construction of new state government schools;
  • Changed Council’s direction on the residential zones mess, firstly by reassessing the extent of neighbourhood residential zone vs general residential zone, and later by calling for a comprehensive review of Matthew Guy’s politically-motivated and inappropriate allocation of zones;
  • Made major changes to the Arden Macaulay planning controls to ensure that built form between the preferred and mandatory maximum heights is accompanied by a defined community benefit (instead of the as-of-right extra height that was proposed);
  • Secured a Hoddle Grid heritage review to finally update the 31-years-out-of-date Butler study;
  • Secured a Southbank heritage review;
  • Secured a Fishermans Bend heritage review;
  • Secured a Bourke Hill heritage review;
  • Secured a Guildford and Hardware Lanes heritage review;
  • Expanded the Kensington heritage review to take in the Market Street area;
  • Created a planning scheme amendment to apply a site-specific heritage overlay to the Palace Theatre (though VCAT later approved the building’s demolition, other than the facade);
  • Commissioned a major review of the sunlight to public spaces planning scheme policy, to ensure that inner city communities and visitors continue to have access to adequate sunlight despite the record rates of development;
  • Secured planning scheme amendment to fix the errors contained in amendment C196, to ensure a consistent treatment of planning controls in North Melbourne;
  • Reviewed the delegations policy for planning applications to ensure more significant proposals are referred to the Future Melbourne Committee for public airing and decision;

Environment

  • Secured new parks above and beyond Council’s own open space strategies, such as the recently opened park adjacent to Kensington Station;
  • Created Melbourne’s first Biodiversity strategy;
  • Created a Significant Tree Register;
  • Commissioned a Moonee Ponds Creek masterplan;
  • Secured unanimous Council support to oppose removal of the Flemington Road lemon scented gums (VicRoads later bypassed Council);
  • Secured a green bin waste trial for Kensington and North Melbourne residents in 2016, with a view to expanding to all residential areas if successful;
  • Secured funds to divert underground pipes to ensure that the Royal Park Billabong at Elliott Ave is filled with water again;
  • Designed the expansion of Gardiner Reserve (funding for construction due 2017-18);

Community

  • Established employment and empowerment programs for the African-Australian community;
  • Established a Fly Neighbourly Agreement to improve inner city residential amenity;
  • Secured in the Council Plan the strong strategic direction to roll out more and more smoke-free areas across the municipality, from which all smoke-free proposals have stemmed;
  • Secured Council’s support for equal marriage and lobbied the Prime Minister on the issue;
  • Commissioned a Melbourne-Moonee Valley cooperative plan to improve the safety and amenity of Racecourse Road;
  • Secured funding for the acoustic improvement of Kensington Town Hall, to allow for more community uses;
  • Created a register of low-cost bookable spaces for community groups;
  • Reviewed street gardens policy in the interests of easier community access to the program;

Transport

  • Secured record investment in safe cycle paths across the municipality;
  • Fought off Labor attempts to stop the Princes Bridge bicycle lanes;
  • Created Melbourne’s first Walking Plan;
  • Formalised the City of Melbourne’s opposition to the East West Link;
  • Made Yarra Trams’ plans for rationalisation of central city tram stops public;

Queen Victoria Market

  • Guaranteed the continued sale of fresh fruit and vegetables in the H and I sheds, by securing Council’s support to overrule the proposal to turn these sheds into a dining hall;
  • Ensured that the market is rezoned to ‘public use zone’ rather than the highly problematic ‘Capital City Zone’, to ensure its purpose and recognition is enshrined in the planning scheme;
  • Established a compensation fund for traders whose businesses are affected during the renewal;
  • Ensured that no renewal construction occurs in the vicinity of the Aboriginal section of the old cemetery;

Democracy

  • Review of local laws to ensure compliance with the Victorian Charter of Human Rights;
  • Returned decision-making on Council’s 10-year financial plan to the community, through a ground-breaking participatory democracy project, the ‘People’s Panel’;
  • Improved transparency of Council meetings by introducing audio recordings of meetings;
  • Improved accessibility of constituents to Council by introducing question time at the start and end of each Future Melbourne Committee meeting;
  • Disclosed the full timeline and decisions made regarding the eviction of Occupy Melbourne protestors;

Arts

  • Secured the Tunnerminnerwait and Maulboyheenner commemorative public marker at the corner of Victoria and Franklin Streets, after extensive research and artist-led study;
  • Doubled the staff and resources for Arts House to significantly increase our support to emerging, experimental and contemporary performing artists;
  • Formed a Music Strategy Advisory Committee;
  • Comprehensively reviewed and updated Melbourne’s Music Strategy with the new Advisory Committee and broader industry;
  • Secured Council support for a planning scheme amendment to apply a site-specific heritage overlay to the Palace Theatre (though the new owner demolished the interior heritage during the week prior to the adoption of the ‘statement of significance’ by Council, which jeopardised the amendment);
  • Carried the petition and secured Council support for the creation of Amphlett Lane;
  • Expanded and promoted the Melbourne Indigenous Arts Festival, including strong music programming;
  • Proposed and held Melbourne’s first Music Symposium, to allow collaboration in the Melbourne music industry and to learn from experts around the world on what it means to be a Music City;
  • Increased Arts Grants funding pools in 2015 and 2016 due to overwhelming competition for grants, including increase in music grants;

Animals

  • Banned exotic animal circuses;
  • Reformed the event permits process to require animal welfare checks.