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Planning Guidelines for Golf Course Redevelopment Introduced_____

Planning Guidelines for Golf Course Redevelopment Introduced

Planning guidelines for the redevelopment of golf courses have been introduced into the Victorian planning system.

Late last week Victoria’s Planning Minister, The Hon Richard Wynne MP, approved the final version of the ‘Planning Guidelines for Golf Course Redevelopment’.

The new guidelines have been implemented into the Victorian Planning system via Ministerial Direction No. 21.

Purpose

The newly introduced ‘Planning Guidelines for Golf Course Redevelopment’ provide guidance to local councils, the Victorian Government, golf clubs, and the development sector, on the key planning steps and considerations for the future development of land within a golf course. The guidelines include a planning decision framework for assessing planning scheme amendments and planning permit applications.

The State Government recognises that golf is one of Australia’s most popular organised recreational activities; however, it also recognises the sport is experiencing changes of demand from golfers, with shorter forms like 9 hole competitions becoming more popular.

Recognising that golf course land, especially within Melbourne’s Urban Growth Boundary may be considered for rezoning, the guidelines have been introduced to ensure that redevelopment proposals are assessed according to consistent criteria.
Discussion

It has been recognised for some time that Golf Club Memberships have been declining across Australia. A key factor for this reduction in demand has been changing leisure patterns emerging with less time available for the commitment required to play 18 holes of golf on a regular basis.

This factor, combined with the operating costs involved in maintaining extensive areas of land to high turfgrass and vegetation standards has forced some golf clubs into taking action by either developing part of their site for commercial use, merging with another club, or looking to do so.

How Can Tract Assist?

With our project partners, Tract has been providing strategic solutions for golf clubs, tourism operators, and developers throughout Victoria, Australia and overseas for decades.

Our multi-disciplined team of Town Planners, Urban Designers and Landscape Architects have extensive golf course experience and can provide a holistic golf course development service tailored to each site, whatever the scale of project. Tract has worked on the redevelopment of numerous existing Golf Courses from minor planning amendments for clubhouse use to development of surplus land, as well as guiding the development of many new courses within green-field settings.

We can provide pragmatic solutions for golf clubs and other interested parties to achieve their goals around their aspirations. We appreciate how important it is to both maximise the return on the development and to create or enhance a strong sense of place for existing members, residents and visitors to the course.

If you would like any more information on how the guidelines may affect you or your future projects, please don’t hesitate to contact Nick Clements or Will Dodgin.
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