What is the Canning Highway #ShapeOurPlace project about?

The Canning Highway #ShapeOurPlace project is an ongoing series of studies to understand the area and plan for the future. The purpose of the Canning Highway #ShapeOurPlace project is to articulate a desirable future character for Canning Highway and adjacent areas, reflecting an appropriate scale and intensity for the strategic context of the place.

What is involved in the Canning Highway #ShapeOurPlace project?

The project is about understanding the existing character and appearance of the buildings within the study area and discovering what sort of development the community would like to see in the future. Generally, the properties along Canning Highway can be developed to greater intensities (more height and more dwellings) and therefore it is important to manage the transition from the highway into the residential streets behind.

The project includes community engagement to inform urban design analysis and preparation of planning controls. The project takes into consideration future plans to widen Canning Highway and recent decisions made by Council regarding properties in the study area. 

What are the key steps in the project?

Key steps involved in the project include:

1.  Understanding the existing built form of the area (what type of housing is there and what it looks like). Stage one of the project focused on this and was completed in March 2016.

2.  Discovering what sort of development is possible and what the community would like to see in the future in specific areas; along the highway, adjacent to the highway and in the suburban streets. Stage two of the project is focusing on the area between Berwick St and Douglas Av and includes a detailed assessment of the character of Kensington and South Perth either side of Canning Highway. Once the Character Study is complete the City will draft changes to the Town Planning Scheme to manage future development.

3. Consultation will be undertaken to refine and finalise any changes to the City’s planning scheme, before Council makes a recommendation to the Minister for Planning.

4.  Future stages of the project will focus on other parts of the study area and provide recommendations for the City to address issues and make changes to the planning scheme to achieve desirable built form in the future.

Which area is included in stage 2?

Stage 2 focusses on the area between Berwick St and Douglas Av (identified as Places 1 and 2). Not all of the study area will be affected by changes to the Town Planning Scheme. 

Who is completing the study?

GHD were engaged by the City of South Perth as a consultant to undertake the first part of the project. GHD provided a report with recommendations to the City in 2015.

TPG + Place Match were engaged as a consultant to undertake the second part of the project, focussing on Kensington and South Perth between Berwick Street and Douglas Avenue. TPG + Place Match provided a report with recommendations to the City in two parts; Part A in October 2016 and Part B in May 2017.

Future parts of the project will be undertaken by City staff and consultants, as appropriate.

What will be the outcomes of Canning Highway Stage 2?

The outputs from stage two are:

  • Kensington/South Perth Character Study Report – Part A (character study findings for public comment)
  • Kensington/South Perth Character Study Report – Part B (report on comments received and recommended planning controls)
  • Draft planning policy and amendment to the City’s Town Planning Scheme, for public consultation.

What is the catalyst/driver for the study?

In 2012 the City of South Perth prepared a Draft Local Housing Strategy. The Strategy identified that there are challenges for the City between managing high density development along Canning Highway and the adjacent low density residential areas. The Strategy recommended that the City investigate medium density coding for all residential zoned lots within 100 metres of Canning Highway and Manning Road.

This project is the next phase of planning for the Canning Highway area and will be more detailed than the Local Housing Strategy. The project will be conducted in stages and will identify where challenges exist for the City and recommend where medium density coding may be appropriate.

The purpose of the project is NOT to increase density throughout the study area. Many properties within the study area will remain at their current zoning and density code.

How will I be affected if my property is within the study area?

Some properties adjacent to Canning Highway are likely to experience change in the future either through redevelopment or widening of the highway itself. However many properties within the study area will remain at their current zoning and density code.

The project will not revisit previous decisions made by Council in preparing the draft Local Housing Strategy in 2012.

Will all areas in the study area experience change?

No. Being within the study area does not necessarily mean that changes will be proposed to your street or property. However, due to the proximity to Canning Highway, you may be influenced by changes proposed as part of this project. It is therefore important that you be informed and given the opportunity to participate in shaping the future planning controls for the area.

What is built form?

Built form refers to the appearance of the building. This may include elements such as the type of development (is it a single house, townhouse, unit, apartment etc.), building height, bulk and scale, street presentation and design articulation.

‘Height’ means how tall the building is.

‘Bulk and scale’ means how big/bulky the development is, particularly in relation to the street.

‘Street presentation’ means how the development looks from the street and may include elements such as landscaping, front fences, position of garages/car ports, roof form, windows etc.

‘Design articulation’ means the design treatments that break up the building such as using different materials, balconies, changing levels, changing setbacks (distances from the lot boundary).

Different design can lead to different built form outcomes, even within areas with the same density codes. The purpose of this project is to prepare planning controls to guide the built form of future development.

What are the common housing types?

There are three main types of housing: 

  • single house;
  • grouped dwelling; and
  • multiple dwelling.

Within each of these three types of dwellings, the built form (appearance) of the building can vary by changing certain elements of the building.

These types of housing are defined in State Planning Policy 3.1 – Residential Design Codes of Western Australia (R Codes). 

What is the highway widening and when will it occur?

There are long term plans from Main Roads WA to widen Canning Highway. The widening will accommodate:

  • Two lanes of traffic in each direction;
  • A transit/bicycle lane in each direction;
  • Wider verges for pedestrians, shared use and utilities/services;
  • A median strip.

The process of acquiring land for the widening will take a number of years; however it can already be seen on parts of the highway where there are large grassed verges and where the buildings are significantly set back from the highway.

Whilst there is no set timeframe for the widening, it is expected to happen over the next 20 years. However will be largely dependent on State Government funding and the priority of the widening compared to other parts of the Perth road network.

The area likely to be affected by road widening can be viewed on the City of South Perth Town Planning Scheme No. 6. The road reserve (the space set aside for the road) is shown as the ‘Metropolitan Region Scheme Reserve – Primary Regional Road’ along Canning Highway in the Town Planning Scheme.

How will the heights change from the highway to the residential area?

In general, maximum building height limits are recommended to decrease away from the highway to provide a transition into the suburban areas. Increases to the maximum building height limit are recommended in some areas close to the highway.

What about the character areas?

It was recognised during stage one of the project that there are a number of areas, particularly in Kensington, where there is a desire from the community to protect the character of the area. Character is being assessed as part of stage two of the project and may be a part of future stages as well.