Plans to build 10,000 new homes around Sydney’s new northern beaches hospital has hit a major roadblock.
A secret NSW state government report reveals that Frenchs Forest roads will not handle the congestion to come from the influx of dwellings the government wants built in the area.
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A Roads and Maritime Services traffic survey that analysed existing and projected traffic volumes in the area concluded last week that the state government’s target of up to 10,000 new homes in the hospital precinct was too ambitious – especially since the west-east bus rapid transit (BRT) route has been officially scrapped.
Some of the houses amalgamated for a combined sale in Forestville.
The BRT system would have carried many people at a fast rate.
The Manly Daily understands consultants who are employed to plan the region around the new hospital have a revised and significantly lowered the figure on how many new dwellings the area can take.
That figure is due to be made public in a report in the next two months with some possible solutions.
Meanwhile, developers who have gotten wind of the situation are trying to work out council and the government’s next move.
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They are predicting lower densities in the immediate area around the hospital and corridors of rezoned development beyond the precinct.
Real estate agent Jay Alcock, of First National, says it is possible a six-year old housing strategy document for Forestville will be revisited and higher densities allowed along part of Warringh Rd, possibly between Starkey St and Forestville Ave on both sides.
“State planning wants a certain number of new dwellings built in the area,” Alcock says.
“If the BRT was approved most of the houses would be in the hospital precinct, but because it wasn’t approved they will have to put the dwellings further out,” he says.
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He is marketing a consolidated site of 11 homes on the corner of Warringah and Ferguson roads. In the advertising material it states the 6700sqm site is zoned R2 and could be an ideal seniors residents site.
However, Alcock says up to six developers are suddenly circling, thinking it has potential for rezoning up to three storeys high.
An artists impression of the $500m Frenchs Forest hospital.
Warringah mayor Michael Regan wants the BRT alongside the hospital.
A Warringah Council spokesman says the council is pleased the State Government had finally signed off on the detailed investigation into the transport impacts of the new hospital.
“Council can now get back to preparing the Hospital Precinct Structure Plan, which will be ready in 6-8 weeks,” he says.
“The Plan will recommend the most appropriate land uses for the area around the hospital, but it is not a rezoning document and we ask people to be wary of jumping to conclusions about any rezonings.”
Meanwhile international developers CBRE are scouting for possible sites.
Negotiator Aaron Arias confirms CBRE is now representing the 62 homeowners off Frenchs Forest Rd, plus a group south of Warringah Rd and a third group of over 20 homeowners in Forestville.