Mayor explains Slade re-zoning
MAYOR Ron Bellingham has quashed claims a proposed re-zoning of Slade Campus in the new draft planning scheme for the region is a move to increase the attractiveness of the site for developers.
Slade is earmarked to fall into the new “Residential Choice” zone – which encourages high-density housing such as units and townhouses – which Slade Lives Again activists say is a change from the site’s zoning in the existing Warwick Town Plan.
The group this week claimed that under the proposed planning scheme more than 200 units could be built on the site, dramatically changing the character of the Glennie Heights area.
But Cr Bellingham was adamant the change in zoning was little different to the situation now as there was already the possibility of units on the land.
“There may be a slight increase in density but only very slight and there would be nothing stopping any developer from applying to build units on the site now if they owned it,” the mayor said.
“But in fact one of the reasons council bought Slade in the first place was to protect it from development.
“There is a residential component there already in the form of houses we rent out and it remains council’s view that Slade would continue on in that regard and with an educational component.”
A council spokeswoman said the existing Warwick Town Plan – which remains in force until the new regional plan comes into effect early next year – has a single “Residential” zoning, which allows for both single dwellings and units in all parts of Warwick.
“So there is no change to what can be done under the zoning on the site under the existing town plan and proposed planning scheme,” the spokeswoman said.
Slade Lives Again spokeswoman Margaret McKinnon said the group believed the proposed zoning change would increase the population density on a re-developed Slade site “enormously”.