Sydney aged-care developer Montefiore is facing hurdles to progressing its Hunters Hill expansion project.
The developer has submitted a rezoning review to the NSW Department of Planning and Environment after the Hunters Hill Council rejected a a proposal to rezone more land.
BCI Central shows the rezoning relates to land at 116 to 120 High Street, 45 to 47 Barons Crescent, and 2 to 20 Gaza Avenue, on which Montefiore already has a facility.
The rezoning, requiring an amendment of the Hunters Hill Local Environment Plan 2012, would mean Montefiore could submit further development applications for its vision for ageing in place, including introducing independent living units.
This plan for the Montefiore Boronia Park site at Hunters Hill would provide a further 144 residential aged-care and independent living units.
It would allow new buildings that could range from two storeys along Gaza Avenue, up to four storeys along Barons Crescent and six storeys in the centre of its current site.
However, Hunters Hill Council rejected the planning proposals in September because, it said, the proposals “lacked strategic merit”, with “inadequate community consultation”.
It warned that, despite identifying the Montefiore site in its 2021 Local Housing Strategy as a potential route to meeting the future housing needs for the aged-care sector, the move to rezone residential land would “set a serious precedent” for the municipality by allowing zoning and heights inconsistent with the Hunters Hill Local Environment Plan.
In response to feedback from the council and community after the rejection, Montefiore made changes including reducing the maximum standard building heights and increasing building setbacks at Barons Crescent.
“While the objections of a group of local residents was not unexpected, Montefiore is of the view that decision by councillors to refuse the progress of the planning proposal to gateway determination ignores the significant merit of the planning proposal in support of the masterplan for the site and denies the opportunity to develop a unique site which already has significant age-care infrastructure in place,” Montefiore told The Urban Developer in a statement.
“It also denies the wider community the benefit of accessing state-of-the-art seniors housing options in the face of a growing ageing demographic.
“Accordingly, Montefiore has lodged a request with the DPE to undertake an independent review of the rezoning application.”
The latest setback has not hampered Montefiorte’s expansion elsewhere, however, with the developer having recently filed plans for an $83-million seniors housing project in Randwick in Sydney’s south-east.