I thought Council had agreed to stop the development on the Bath Street site at Toronto and include it as part of the Master Plan?

    At the Ordinary Meeting of Council on 23 September 2019, Council resolved to defer further work on the recommended planning proposal and preparation for a mixed-use development on 4 Bath Street and 1B Victory Row, Toronto. The resolution also called for the mixed-use development to be deferred until a review of Council’s property portfolio is complete and to assess the best future use and design elements for land at 4 Bath Street and 1B Victory Row in line with Council’s Sustainability Policy. This proposal is based on the outcome of the Sustainability Review and feedback received from the community in previous consultations regarding the site.

    What is the Sustainability Policy?

    Council's Sustainability Policy, adopted by Council in August 2019, describes four pillars of sustainability to ensure that decision-making considers the needs of current and future generations of Lake Macquarie City.

    What are the four pillars of the Sustainability Policy?

    The four pillars of the Sustainability Policy are Environmental Sustainability, Social Sustainability, Social Sustainability, Economic Sustainability, and Sustainable Governance.

      • Environmental sustainability – use resources wisely, enhance the quality of our natural landscapes, seek to achieve positive outcomes for our local environment, make an equitable contribution to improving environments.
      • Social sustainability – an inclusive, resilient and connected community that embraces innovation and creativity, and values our heritage, inclusive community engagement.
      • Economic sustainability – build prosperity, cost-effective delivery of works and services, appropriate maintenance and renewal of Council’s asset base.
      • Sustainable governance – demonstrate transparency, fairness, ethical practices and accountability, encourage and promote effective public, public-private and civil society partnerships.

    What is a Sustainability Review?

    The Sustainability Review aims to identify the ‘best’ solution for site use as a reflection of the four pillars of the Sustainability Policy.

    Who undertook the Sustainability Review?

    Professional consultants with appropriate expertise undertook the Sustainability Review.

    What was the outcome of the Sustainability Review?

    Council reviewed seven scenarios as part of the Sustainability Review:

    1. Do nothing
    2. Open space / parkland

                2a – Café + ancillary commercial premises and open space

    1. Local Environmental Plan and Development Control Plan compliant community function centre
    2. Development Control Plan compliant residential and serviced and serviced apartments
    3.  Mixed use development based on commercially activated ground floor and serviced apartments and residential uses above
    4. As per item four above with the addition of the precinct development proposed in the planning proposal.

    Several options presented favourable outcomes for Council. However, based on the feedback from the community, Council is keen to explore whether open space/parkland, complemented by a small building to enhance the experiences of foreshore users, would be an appropriate use for the site.

    Will Council pursue a bigger development in the future on this site?

    If this proposal is endorsed by Council at its meeting in September, we will proceed with the design and construction of a small-scale building on the site, in line with what has been presented to the community. The decision of Council at its September meeting will supersede any previous decisions made by Council in relation to the site.

    Will the Bath Street site be converted to community land?

    The site will remain as operational land, as this provides flexibility for small-scale food, beverage and complementary offerings now and into the future.

    What are the next steps in the process to develop the Toronto Foreshore Master Plan?

    At its meeting of 23 September 2019, Council resolved to defer further work on the recommended planning proposal and preparation for a mixed-use development on 4 Bath Street and 1B Victory Row, Toronto. To find out where Council is at in relation to each part of the resolution please refer to the January 2020 project update.

    How has the Master Plan progressed since the Council decision in September?

    We have been refining the Toronto Foreshore Master Plan, based on community consultation regarding the design principles and ideas for the area. We will seek feedback on the proposed plan and priorities in late 2020.

    We expect the Master Plan will be reported to Council in 2021 to be endorsed for further community consultation. 

    What is a Master Plan?

    A Master Plan is a document that provides the overall vision for improvements and upgrades to an area and guides the future detailed design and works for an area.  Master Plans exist for a range of areas in the City including Speers Point Park and Warners Bay Foreshore.

    What is the scope of the Master Plan works?

    Council has approximately $9 million from developer contributions to invest in Foreshore improvements. This could include facilities such as shared pathways, playgrounds, fitness stations, boardwalks, picnic tables, barbecues, park benches, landscaping and public art, or structures to improve dining and entertainment options such as a café, restaurant or infrastructure for festivals and events.

    What is happening on the Toronto Foreshore?

    Council wants to make the Toronto Foreshore a more inviting place for people by improving access and amenities and creating enticing destination points along the waterfront precinct from Brighton Avenue to Bath Street. To do this, we will develop, with the community’s input, a Master Plan for the Toronto Foreshore.

    How will the community be involved in planning?

    Council is committed to working with the community to shape Toronto’s Foreshore. In 2018, Phase One consultation was conducted allowing the community to have their say on the facilities, amenities and type of environment they would like to see along the Foreshore.

    In 2019, we undertook further community consultation asking for feedback on the draft principles and design ideas prepared as part of the Toronto Foreshore Master Plan project. The engagement report for this phase of consultation can be viewed on the project page.

    Further opportunities for community engagement will be available as the projects progresses in 2020.

    A range of community engagement methods will be used to ensure that as many community members as possible have an opportunity to participate.

    What community consultation has been undertaken?

    We have undertaken consultation with the Toronto community in relation to the Toronto Foreshore Master Plan and the interface between the proposed development, which has now been deferred as per the Council resolution of 23 September 2019. Throughout August and September 2018, we held four community drop-in sessions, and sought feedback through an online survey and interactive map regarding community-desired improvements for the foreshore at Toronto.

    In 2019, we undertook further community consultation which asked for feedback on the draft principles and design ideas prepared as part of the Toronto Foreshore Master Plan project. The engagement report for this phase of consultation can be viewed on the project page.

    The project team will continue to update the community as the project progresses throughout 2020.

    How will public access to the waterfront be affected?

    Council is seeking to improve public access to what is an under-used part of the waterfront through the development of the Toronto Foreshore Master Plan. Currently, access to a large part of the Toronto Foreshore between Edward Gain Park and Bath Street is restricted, with no formal pathways and many sections that are uneven and overgrown.

    More than 90 per cent of the Foreshore land will remain open public space under Council’s plans and the Foreshore will become a more accessible and enjoyable area that complements its picturesque lakeside location.

    What will happen to the Heritage Hunter Water Sewer Pump on 1B Victory Row?

    Council is liaising with Hunter Water to determine the most appropriate outcome for this asset.  The options will be investigated in more detail once Council commences detailed design and master planning of the Foreshore.

    Will the Aboriginal community be consulted on the proposal?

    Yes, the traditional owners of the land have been consulted as part of the preliminary investigations and will continue to have input into Council’s plans for the area.