19th Oct 2012
By Jon Andrews
CSIRO in Highett is planning to sell off its site for housing…
…residents want the grassy woodlands saved
THE CSIRO has released a provisional plan for their massive Highett site involving building more than 420 houses and units.
But they only want to allow 2.2 Ha of the 9.3 Ha site to be used for open space and conservation of the Highett Grassy Woodlands.
Another 0.9 Ha block is earmarked for a heritage area.
The plans were unveiled at a meeting last Friday attended by the Bayside Leader involving all three levels of government.
CSIRO property services deputy manager Joe Colbert said they needed to accommodate 400 plus dwellings to make it viable for a move to Clayton.
He said the provisional plans showed 28 per cent of the site would be dedicated to open space and conservation.
Goldstein Federal Liberal MP Andrew Robb said the planned amount of open space was not enough.
He said it would be accepted if the 0.9 heritage precinct was also made into parkland.
“We want space where kids can kick a footy,” Mr Robb said.
“Highett by far is the worst (suburb) for the absence of green space.”
Special Minister of State Labor MP Gary Gray agreed, saying 3 Ha was a minimum he would like to see.
Bayside Mayor Louise Cooper-Shaw said it was very important to preserve as much open space as possible.
Sandringham State Liberal MP Murray Thompson said this was a chance for a legacy to create significant parkland in Highett.
State Liberal Planning Minister Matthew Guy said both the need for 420 dwellings and 3 Ha of open space could be worked into any future designs.
A decision is not expected until next year.