Project update - July 2023
VCAT hearing not proceeding
An appeal had been lodged with the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) by the Applicant on a question of process regarding Amendment C107. The hearing was scheduled for a hearing for two days on the 5 & 6 September 2023. At the request of the Applicant, VCAT have recently made an order that the ‘proceeding is stuck out with a right of reinstatement’. This means the hearing on the 5 & 6 September will not proceed. As the original appeal was in relation to a procedural matter there is always a possibility of the request being remade in the future. At this point in time Council considers the matter finalised.
Planning Scheme Amendment
Banyule Planning Scheme Amendment C107 will allow for the use and development of land in Yarra Flats Park, Ivanhoe East for an outdoor recreation facility (treetop adventure park). The planning scheme amendment has been requested by Ecoline Pty Ltd, who have been granted a lease from Parks Victoria to develop and operate a treetop based adventure facility on the site.
The amendment applies to the north-eastern corner of the Yarra Flats Park at 340-680 The Boulevard, Ivanhoe East, as shown on the map to the right. The land is owned and managed by Parks Victoria.
A tree-based adventure park featuring flying foxes, suspension bridges, nets and other adventure challenges within the established tree canopy in a section of the Yarra Flats Park.
- An administration office (18.2m x 10.2m) will be constructed on site using two timber clad shipping containers, an overhead roof shelter and timber decking.
- No trees are proposed to be removed, minimal undergrowth will be trimmed and branches only removed when dangerous to people.
- Weed removal and dead wooding will be undertaken to regenerate the area.
- All structures, including the administration office, are removable.
- Existing toilets on site will be upgraded and reopened to the public.
- The existing car parks will be used and the closed area re-opened which provides 127 car spaces. No additional spaces are required.
- No fencing is proposed. Visitors will continue to have unrestricted access to the area.
- Signage will be in accordance with the preliminary signage strategy.
The treetop adventure park will operate 7 days a week, 364 days per year, closed on Christmas day. Operating hours are 9am to 6pm, this will vary slightly depending on the time of year.
For more information see the Treetops at Yarra Flats brochure produced by Ecoline and the planning documents available in the supporting document tab.
Why is the amendment needed?
The treetop adventure park will be managed by a private operator, Ecoline Pty Ltd, under lease from Parks Victoria (the public land manager), therefore, the use of this land is prohibited under the Banyule Planning Scheme. As the proposed site is within a Public Conservation and Resource Zone, a Specific Controls Overlay is proposed to be introduced in the Banyule Planning Scheme to allow the treetop adventure park proposal to go ahead. The proposal will be subject to the controls contained in a new Incorporated Document.
What does the amendment do?
Amendment C107 facilitates the use and development of the land at 340-680 The Boulevard, Ivanhoe East, for an outdoor recreation facility (treetop adventure park) by applying the Specific Controls Overlay and introducing an Incorporated Document in the Banyule Planning Scheme titled ‘Treetop Adventure Park, 340-680 The Boulevard, Ivanhoe East, September 2020’.
The Panel Hearing for Banyule Planning Scheme Amendment C107bany was held online from Monday 5 July to Friday 9 July 2021. The Panel Report has been received and was considered by Council on 4 October 2021.
- Panel Hearing Timetable
- Planning Authority Part A & B Submission
- Planning Authority Part A & B Submission - appendices
- Planning Authority Part C Submission
- Proponent Submission
- Public Land Manger Submission
- Arboriculture Peer Review Report - Arborists Reports Australia
- Ecology Peer Review Report - Ecology and Heritage Partners
- Town Planning Evidence Statement - Glossop Town Planning
- Traffic and Car Parking Expert Statement - One Mile Grid
- Ecology Expert Statement - Nature Advisory
- Soil Expert Statement - Robert White
- Water & Soil Health Expert Statement - GUF McGC
- Water & Soil Health Expert Statement - Attachment 1
- Water & Soil Health Expert Statement - CV's
- Ecology Expert Witness Statement - Practical Ecology
- Ecology Expert Witness Report - Practical Ecology
- Ecology Expert Statement Addendum - Practical Ecology
- Arboriculture Expert Statement - Open Space Management
Information provided prior to Panel Hearing
The following documents are provided in accordance with the Panel Directions:
- Banyule City Council Biodiversity Plan 2019-2022
- Banyule Wildlife Corridor Program 2000
- Healthy Parks Healthy People Framework 2000 (Parks Victoria)
- Middle Yarra River Corridor Study Recommendations Report October 2016
- Middle Yarra River Concept Plan 1993
- Yarra Flats Concept Plan 2013
- Yarra River Strategic Plan (draft)
- Yarra River Protection Act 2017
- Yarra River – Bulleen Precinct Land Use Framework Plan (draft)
- City of Banyule Economic Development Plan 2015-20
- Victorian Visitor Economy Strategy
- Bulleen - Banyule Flats Cultural Values Study Summary Report
- Copy of all submissions referred to the Panel
For more information, contact Planning Panels Victoria at firstname.lastname@example.org
Explanatory ReportPDF (528.08 KB)
Incorporated DocumentPDF (309.46 KB)
Specific Controls Overlay (SCO) - Clause 45.12PDF (122.40 KB)
Schedule to the Documents Incorporated in the Planning Scheme - Clause 72.04sPDF (124.96 KB)
Instruction SheetPDF (19.88 KB)
SCO MapPDF (359.81 KB)
Notice of Preparation of an AmendmentPDF (97.85 KB)
Letter of AuthorisationPDF (211.54 KB)
Site and Administration Office Plans - September 2020PDF (4.58 MB)
Planning Report - September 2020PDF (2.28 MB)
Transport Impact Assessment - May 2016PDF (2.29 MB)
Flora and Fauna Assessment, No Net Loss Analysis and Land Management Plan - December 2018PDF (7.79 MB)
Arboricultural Tree Health & Hazard Assessment - 2018 with addendum 25 February 2019PDF (6.97 MB)
Biodiversity Impact and Offset Requirements Report - July 2016PDF (945.80 KB)
Native Vegetation Removal Report - November 2018PDF (586.97 KB)
Aboriginal Heritage Due Diligence Report - 19 September 2018PDF (5.04 MB)
Letter of Pre-Development Decision from Melbourne Water - 26 April 2017PDF (90.26 KB)
Letter of Support from Parks Victoria - 30 April 2018PDF (46.15 KB)
Frequently Asked Questions
No trees are proposed to be removed.
There will be minimal impact to the vegetation on site. This will consist of:
- Some shrubs and trees in the vicinity of the ropes course may need to be trimmed to allow for the obstacle course and for the safety of participants.
- Shrubs and other understorey vegetation loss will occur in the small area required for the administration area.
For more information see section 4 of the Flora & Fauna Assessment
All the trees have been assessed to ensure they are suitable for the proposed use.
Care is taken not to damage the trees.
- Trees are not drilled into; the equipment is built around the trees.
- To build a platform, logs are clamped around the tree and decking is put up on the logs.
- Half logs protect the trunk from the pressure of wires, as trees grow, the wires are gradually released so growth is not restricted.
Conditions in the Incorporated Document will also ensure the ongoing protection of trees, including during construction.
Page 23 & 24 of the Tree Health & Hazards Report shows examples of the apparatus to be used on the trees.
The Flora & Fauna Assessment by Practical Ecology has found that it is unlikely the proposal will have adverse effects on landscape values, wildlife habitat or corridors, or lead to land degradation through soil erosion or loss of water quality. This is due to the minimal impact of the proposal on the land and the limited removal of native vegetation.
For more information see section 5.3.4 of the Flora & Fauna Assessment
- The Powerful Owl is only known to use the site as a connecting corridor to fly through at night. There are no known breeding or roosting sites that occur within the site. The closest known breeding sites are approximately 2km to 3.8km from the area.
- It is unlikely that the construction or the future use of the site will have any significant impact on the Powerful Owl as:
- The proposed construction will have minimal impact on habitat.
- The TreeTops Adventure Park will be restricted to daylight hours.
For more information see section 3.3.2 Flora & Fauna Assessment
- Numbers of people using the facility will be controlled through a booking system which allows for a maximum of 100 people at any one time.
- All traffic to and from the site is likely to approach from the north and utilise the signalised intersection between The Boulevard and Banksia Street. The modest increase in traffic from the facility is expected to be readily accommodated without contributing to any meaningful increase in queues or delays within the intersection.
- The proposal represents only a moderate increase to traffic volumes along the northern section of The Boulevard only. Noting the wide road provided in this location, it is not expected that that the proposal will have any considerable impact on the operation of local road network.
For more information see page 13 of the Transport Impact Assessment Report
- No, the existing car parks will be used and the closed area re-opened which provides 127 car spaces. The supply of parking is considered to be more than sufficient to accommodate demand generated by the use, estimated at a peak of 37 spaces.
- The 41 spaces currently closed for public use will be refurbished by Ecoline and will be the primary parking available for the TreeTops visitors and team members.
For more information see page 30 of the Traffic Impact Assessment Report
- The adventure park will operate under lease from Parks Victoria. This is similar to other facilities such as Yarra Bend Golf Course and Studley Park Boathouse which are operated by a private company under a Parks Victoria lease.
- The facility is in line with Parks Victoria’s ’Healthy Parks, Healthy People’ focus to connect people and nature.
- The facility is not a permanent structure. The ropes course and office are designed to rest lightly on the land. If the operation ceases all the structures can be removed.