Armstrong Creek - Frequently asked questions

Common questions about Armstrong Creek.

What is Council’s vision for the growth area?

The Armstrong Creek urban growth area will be developed into a sustainable community that sets new benchmarks in best practice urban development. Natural and cultural features will be protected and enhanced to create a distinct urban character.

Armstrong Creek will become a highly sought-after location for living, working and recreation, forming an attractive addition to Geelong.


Why will Armstrong Creek be different from other subdivision developments in and around Geelong?

Armstrong Creek will be a master planned community that enables the early design and inclusion of key community facilities and infrastructure to sustain a future residential, commercial and industrial community. This is a different approach for the City of Greater Geelong.

Council aims to deliver innovative approaches in water management, community facilities, public open space, public transport and a walkable/vibrant community.


Where will people live?

How many people will live in Armstrong Creek?

The growth area will provide for 22,000 lots and a population of around 55,000-65,000 people.


What type of housing will be provided?

Housing will be delivered for a range of household types in a variety of ways that support the life stages of communities. This will include conventional residential development, medium to high density development and retirement village styles.

Council is committed to providing for a diversity of housing in all precincts. The framework plan nominates areas for medium to high density housing, along with conventional density housing. There is also significant potential for shop top housing and apartment style living in and around the Activity Centres.


Where will people work?

There are two dedicated employment precincts in the growth area, the North East Industrial Precinct and the Western Industrial Precinct. The Major Activity Centre will also provide a large scale of employment across Armstrong Creek along with schools and community facilities.

Council anticipates that more than 22,000 jobs will be provided in the growth area as follows:

Job Estimate Figures for Growth Area Indicative figures
Major Activity Centre 3,500
N-E Neighbourhood Activity Centre 250
S-E Neighbourhood Activity Centre 210
Local Shops (Residential) 210
North East Industrial Precinct 8,000
Western Industrial Precinct 7,350
Home Based Businesses 2,200
Specialised Local Centres in Employment Precincts 190
Other 1,000
Total Jobs 22,910


What planning processes will be used to achieve the vision?

The Urban Growth Zone has been approved to all land within the Urban Growth Boundary previously zoned as Farming.

The application of the Urban Growth Zone does not, by itself, allow urban use and development to proceed. The Urban Growth Zone is essentially a holding zone which reserves land for future urban development. The provisions of the Urban Growth Zone reflect those of the Farming Zone, while allowing a small number of pioneering uses to be approved prior to the approval of a Precinct Structure Plan.

The Urban Growth Zone applies different provisions to land depending on whether a Precinct Structure Plan applies. A Precinct Structure Plan applies when it is incorporated into the Planning Scheme.

Once development and a precinct is underway, the Urban Growth Zone will be translated into an appropriate standard zone, for example: Residential 1 Zone, Business 2 Zone.


What is a Precinct Structure Plan?

In the Urban Growth Zone, Precinct Structure Plans are the key documents that trigger the conversion of non-urban land into urban land allowing for permits to be issued for the subdivision and development of land for urban purposes. A Precinct Structure Plan is included in the Planning Scheme via a standard Planning Scheme Amendment process.

There are seven precincts in the growth area and each precinct will require a Precinct Structure Plan.

A Precinct Structure Plan is a long term strategic plan that describes how a precinct will be developed. Once a Precinct Structure Plan is approved, permits can be issued for subdivision and development.

Council will be following the lead of the Growth Areas Authority, which is the Authority responsible for delivering 37 Precinct Structure Plans in Melbourne’s growth areas.


What Precinct Structure Plans have been approved?

5 precincts have been approved:

  1. C207 - North East Industrial Precinct

  2. C214 - East Precinct

  3. C240 - West Precinct

  4. C259 - Horseshoe Bend Precinct

  5. C267 - Town Centre Precinct


What is a Developer Contributions Plan (DCP)?

The Development Contributions Plan (DCP) is a way by which Council will charge new development in the growth area for contributions towards planned infrastructure projects. It is a certain and transparent means by which Council can recover some of the costs towards the on-going provision of adequate development and community infrastructure. Money received through the DCP will go towards a varied range of projects such as:

  • Road and drainage upgrades
  • Landscaping and streetscaping works
  • Improvements to parks
  • Community centres
  • Neighbourhood houses
  • Libraries
  • Sporting facilitates
  • Youth facilitates
  • Community health centres
  • Bike paths
  • Public lighting and toilet blocks

The DCP outlines why and how Council will charge new development for a financial contribution towards planned infrastructure projects from which that development will benefit. The DCP is incorporated in the Planning Scheme via a standard planning scheme amendment process.


Will new residents have access to services and facilities when they need them?

What community facilities will be provided?

The Armstrong Creek Project Team has developed the Social Integrated Infrastructure Delivery Plan (SIIDP) with other agencies for the whole of the growth area.

The plan identifies the education, health, community service, recreation and the emergency service requirements in the growth area. The plan is focused on the timely provision of these services so that these new communities can develop in a sustainable fashion.

The SIIDP will be used to guide the detailed Precinct Structure Planning for each of the seven precincts.


What schools will be available?

A mix of public and private schools at both primary and secondary level will be provided across the growth area. In addition to schools it is also envisaged that life long learning opportunities will be available through libraries, kindergartens, playgroups, post secondary, U3A and community houses. The details of the schools which will ultimately be established in Armstrong Creek are not yet known. However, Geelong Lutheran School (prep to year 12) is located on the corner of Burvilles Road and Surfcoast Highway.


When will the new railway station be developed?

Council is in negotiations with the Department of Transport to obtain a commitment for it to firstly secure the land, and secondly, to construct the required infrastructure for the railway station.

Council is hopeful that the railway station will be operational by 2015.


What is planned for the Marshall railway station?

Council has been in discussions with the Department of Transport with a view to ensuring the Marshall Station and surrounds are further developed in response to its increased usage. Marshall Station is an integral part of the growth area.


Will there be a rail connection to Torquay?

The framework plan makes provision for a land corridor which runs from the existing Warrnambool- Melbourne line to the south of the growth area, which will ultimately allow for a rail connection to Torquay. Council has been in discussions with the Department of Transport, and have been advised that initially any public transport link to Torquay will be via a high quality rapid bus service.

Council is also working with Surfcoast Shire to ensure that the appropriate planning for this link is coordinated across municipal boundaries.


Will there be an East West link from the Geelong Ring Road to the Bellarine Peninsula?

The framework plan includes provision for an East West link which runs from the Anglesea Road to the Barwon River. At this stage the location of the road is indicative, but as detailed master planning is undertaken land will be set aside for the road.

Council is committed to reserving land for the future road.

VicRoads have committed to undertaking the planning for the section of road which runs between the Anglesea Road and the Surfcoast Highway.


What work has been done to determine the civil infrastructure requirements of the growth area?

The Armstrong Creek Project Team has developed the Civil Interagency Infrastructure Delivery Plan (CIIDP). The CIIDP sets out a baseline strategy for the delivery of the following infrastructure items: water, sewerage, gas, electricity, telecommunications, drainage and roads. The CIIDP has been developed in consultation with Barwon Water, VicRoads, Telstra, SPAusnet and Powercor to determine a strategy for the roll out of key infrastructure items and to obtain a commitment from the agencies to roll out the infrastructure items within a ten year timeframe.


What shops will be available in Armstrong Creek?

There are four different types of activity centres proposed in the growth area, as follows:

  • A Major Activity Centre
  • Two Neighbourhood Activity Centres, one in Armstrong Creek East Precinct and one in Horseshoe Bend Precinct
  • Local Centres
  • Specialised local centres.

What measures are proposed to make the new community environmentally sustainable?

Water

Armstrong Creek will seek to delivery innovative solutions for the capture, recycling and use of water. Drought tolerant landscaping and sports fields will be encouraged along with locating wetlands / water storage ponds beside public open space for irrigation use, the use of water sensitive urban design, third pipe recycled water, and rain water tanks for both household and business use.

All Armstrong Creek residents will benefit from a dedicated “purple pipe” delivering Class A recycled water for flushing their toilets, washing their cars and watering their gardens. Recycled water will also be used for irrigating public spaces and sporting grounds.

The use of recycled water at Armstrong Creek is expected to save more 2,400 million litres of drinking water a year. Recycled water will be operational from 1 July 2014. Until then, regular drinking water will be supplied via the purple pipe system.

Energy

To ensure the efficient use of energy lots will be oriented to achieve excellent solar orientation. Large scale business and commercial buildings will be encouraged to utilise efficient co-generation systems (shared facilities), environmentally sustainable design and appropriate solar orientation and passive design for both heating and cooling.

Where possible, street and public lighting will utilise solar technology for sourcing energy minimising the long term operating costs and environmental impacts of these assets.


Access

Frequent and high standard walking and cycling paths are a key initiative and one of the key visions for the growth area is to develop walkable communities that are not reliant on the family car, and where possible, encourage single vehicle households.

Walking and cycling paths will be developed in an integrated "web" across the total growth area to encourage the community the walk or cycle for local trips less than five kilometres. The road environment will be designed to give higher priority to pedestrians and cyclists to ensure a safe and quick journey for trips to key community and commercial facilities.


Technology

Opportunities are being explored to provide every household and business with optic fibre telecommunication. This will provide a high speed communication environment for businesses competing on a national and / or global scale, and allow home based businesses and the general community to utilise high quality telecommunication technology


What if I already own land in the growth area?

What is the staging plan for the development of land?

There is no staging plan for the growth area. Precinct Structure Plans will include staging.


When is the right time for me to sell my land in the growth area?

Council cannot advise on this issue. Land owners will need to seek their own advice outside of Council.


My land is currently zoned Residential 1/ Industrial 1, can I develop the land?

It is suggested that you contact Council’s Statutory Planning Department on 5272 4456 to discuss your property.


Can land outside the Armstrong Creek Urban Growth Boundary be developed?

The majority of land to the south of the Urban Growth Boundary is located in the Farming Zone. It is suggested that you contact Council’s Statutory Planning Department on 5272 4456 to discuss your property.


How long will it take to develop all of Armstrong Creek?

It is anticipated that the growth area will be fully developed within 10 - 25 years depending on regional and state housing growth rates.


General

Is there any hobby farm land planned?

No hobby farm type land will be provided in the growth area. Geelong Council has nominated rural living nodes (hobby farm land) at Lovely Banks, Lara and Wallington.


How can I obtain contract work in the growth area?

Roads, footpaths, lighting, park land, housing lots and other infrastructure will be constructed by developers rather than Council. As such, contractors should contact developers to ascertain whether any contracting opportunities exist.


How will my Council rates be affected?

How are Council Rates calculated?

Rate are calculated based on property valuations in accordance with Council’s published Rating Strategy and the Local Government Act 1989. The City of Greater Geelong, like many other Councils has determined that capital improved value is the basis for the calculation of rates.

Learn more about your rates


How is the valuation of my property determined?

Council is required to undertake a general property revaluation every two years in accordance with State Government legislation.

Learn more about your property valuation


How does the change in zoning affect my valuation?

A zoning change may not immediately affect the valuation of a property. It is only when the zoning change is reflected in the sales prices for property sales in the area that the valuation will be affected. Where there is speculation buying the land valuation may increase before the rezoning is completed. The valuations determined by the valuers reflect the highest and best use of the land. In cases where the potential land use is changing, the sales values used to determine the land valuation can reflect the new use of the land.

For example, where land zoning changes from farming to residential it is possible that the sale value of the property will reflect the value as subdivisional land. The site value may increase out of proportion with the capital improved value of the property. In this case the value of past improvements made to the land may become inconsequential.

In some areas of Armstrong Creek where land is capable of subdivision, and sales to developers have occurred, the land will be revalued as potential sub divisional land rather than residential or farm land.


When will my Council rates increase?

Council valuations and rates will change in line with changes to sales values, not necessarily immediately in line with zoning. Please refer to the property valuation page above for more informaiton.


How can I find out more about my Council Rates?

You can discuss you rates further by contacting Council officers on:

Telephone: 03 5272 5272
In person: Visit any City of Greater Geelong Customer Service Centre.



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