Monthly Archives: May 2016

Providing for Swanbourne’s Needs into the 21st Century

The Swanbourne Precinct Development Trust (SPDT) has been formed to effectively develop the precinct around the Swanbourne railway station and provide a sustainable roadmap to the needs of this community for the next 5-10 years.

The first property for the SPDT; number 1 Franklin St; has already been purchased and paid for and is in a good strategic location with a right of way. This will allow the trust, together with the engagement of local shop owners and residents, to effectively develop additional apartments and office space above the shops for the next few years.

Positive feedback has already been received from the progressive Town of Claremont. This liaison between the stakeholders; the Town of Claremont and the SPDT, will culminate in a process to address all the key issues to removing barriers to the Swanbourne Precinct being developed into a higher density thus resulting into a successful, vibrant and sustainable community into the 21st century.

Rod Griffiths and Garry Baverstock discussing the SPDT project outside 1 Franklin St, Swanbourne

Rod Griffiths and Garry Baverstock discussing the SPDT project outside 1 Franklin St, Swanbourne

Positive Integration

In the past, the Town of Cottesloe Council and the Town of Swanbourne were sometimes regarded as looking after their respective sides of the railway line with often little integration between them. It is hoped that the SPDT, with more and more shop owners and residents from both sides of the track as stakeholders; will see the area in the Swanbourne railway precinct acting as an entity rather than two competing sides of the track. This can only lead to better outcomes for all concerned in the development of the area as a whole over the next 10 years at least.

Photo Credits: Nick Melidonis,

Swanbourne Village Trust (SVT) Project gets Green Light

On Tuesday 26th of May, the Town of Cottesloe’s Council agreed to go to advertising for the Swanbourne Village Trust scheme amendment by a majority vote of 5 to 3. Arguments for and against were debated; with Cottesloe Mayor, Jo Dawkins, voting for the project. Ms Dawkins gave an enthusiastic endorsement of the SVT design merits as well as having an architect of Garry Baverstock’s reputation behind the submission.

Prior to the vote on Tuesday, unit holder Katherine Kalaf studied the Town of Cottesloe’s Strategic Plan (2013) in detail to see how the SVT project fulfilled the long term objectives of the plan. The SVT project was found to comply very well in all aspects to the desired direction the council wished to take, especially as this project was situated very near a major railway transport hub.

SVT unit holder, Katherine Kalaf

SVT unit holder, Katherine Kalaf

SVT and Town of Cottesloe’s Strategic Plan

Specifically; in regard to ‘THE COMMUNITIES VISION AND ASPIRATIONS’, the Council’s mission is articulated as:

“In future, some development and redevelopment is likely to occur with smaller lot sizes and additional medium density housing occurring in areas with appropriate density coding. Redevelopment of older townhouse complexes and multi-level flats should result in more choices in housing style and size. “

Certainly, the SVT project will provide more housing choice with state of the art sustainability credentials.

Secondly, with regard to “UNDERPINNING SUSTAINABILITY PRINCIPLES”, the Council states:

 “Under legislation, Council is required to meet the needs of current and future generations in a sustainable way. In carrying out its functions, the Council is committed to four interconnected principles of sustainability:

  1. Sustainable development: To embrace and integrate sustainable development principles including social, economic, environmental and cultural aspects when planning for the district.”


Wise Earth is a leader in sustainable development and the SVT project fulfils the legislative requirement of addressing the changing needs of the community. The trend for living today is to move from large suburban blocks and be part of denser living close to all the amenities such as rail, shopping nodes and the lifestyle amenities which residents have enjoyed all their lives. With younger people, many are also opting for smaller lot sizes and grouped living.


The Strategic Plan further states:

“The priorities and objectives contained in this plan reflect areas Council will concentrate on in the short to medium term that have the potential to impact on how the district develops.  Within each objective there are sustainability implications. This means that in moving forward, the Council will be faced with the question “what is sustainable for the long term?”

The SVT project addresses the trend to increase medium housing density at rail and commercial hubs. In other Australian cities such as Melbourne, this has been effectively addressed for some time and has been expressed as a goal by the State Government. Planner Peter Newman has been instrumental in encouraging this option as a sustainable solution to housing pressure in towns such as Cottesloe.

“Care must be taken that the pressure for denser development does not destroy the casual relaxed lifestyle, the character of the beachfront and the green leafy neighbourhood and unduly affect the amenity and ambience enjoyed by residents.”


On this aspect, Katherine goes on to say

“Our project sensitively addresses these concerns by reducing the bulk of the building and referring to an adjacent building form for scale while not overshadowing or unduly causing problems with height for neighbours.

I feel our project anticipates and addresses a number strategic goals in the council’s strategic plan.

  • Development at railway and commercial nodes.

  • Sustainability.

  • Energy efficiency.

  • Green spaces.

  • Anticipating and responding to the needs of the community.”


The proponents of the SVT project; some who will live in the development when finished; wholeheartedly support the Cottesloe Council’s Strategic Plan ethos and look forward to providing an innovative, sustainable development that all will be proud to see when completed in Cottesloe.

Photo Credits; Nick Melidonis,