Plans to help Heyfield growth

A HEYFIELD resident says his town should be given the opportunity to grow.

John Tyquin, president of the Heyfield Football-Netball Club, is concerned the town is being left behind, with shops closing and a lack of housing options.

Wellington Shire Council is hoping to rectify that with changes to the Heyfield Structure Plan.

In December 2011, council adopted the plan which provides recommendations to serve as a planning tool for the long term vision for the town’s future growth and development.

Planning Scheme Amendment C72 will give statutory effect to the plan.

It will guide land use and developments which council hopes will improve the quality of life for the community, while helping to attract residents and businesses to the area and protect existing industry.

During the preparation of Amendment C72, council officers consulted with key stakeholders to confirm if future aspirations were still as outlined in the Heyfield Structure Plan.

Through the consultation the potential was identified to make significant changes around Firebrace Rd in the short and medium term instead of the long term, as identified in the structure plan.

A strategic justification report has been prepared to update the original plan.

The strategic justification document, which was adopted by council on August 20, identifies the development opportunities in the short and medium term in the Firebrace Rd area.

Council will request the Planning Minister to authorise Amendment C72 for it to be progressed further.

Mr Tyquin said council needed to look at zoning for residential land in Heyfield.

“When you’ve got people living in Morwell, Traralgon, Sale, Stratford, Maffra travel to our little community and work in our community, they love the place in which they work but they’d also love to live there,” he said.

“At the moment you can’t rent a house in Heyfield.”

Mr Tyquin said some land previously rezoned was owned by people unwilling develop, while people wishing to rezone their land were unable to.

“We would just like the councillors to really look at the future and the development of Heyfield.

“It’s got two primary schools; we’ve got to keep them going.

“We’ve got shops and businesses that are competing against the big stores in larger towns.

“We’ve got five doctors in the town; we’ve got a dentist there once or twice a week.

“We’ve got a great community, but we want to develop it.

“We want the support of the council to do that.”

Mayor Scott Rossetti said the amendment process would facilitate the rezoning of land to accommodate future residential growth in Heyfield.

“The proposed changes will also seek to improve the accessibility, safety and appearance of the town centre in order to support sustainable growth within Heyfield,” he said.

“Once the amendment documents are available, a public notice will be issued and feedback and submissions will be invited from the community.”

More information about Amendment C72 can be found on council’s website, www.wellington.vic.gov.au, or by phoning its strategic planning team on 1300 366 244.

The amendment documents will be available to view later this year on the Department of Transport Planning and Local Infrastructure website or in hard copy at the Wellington Shire Council offices in Sale and Yarram or Heyfield library.