Posted 22/12/15  Updated 23/8/16



MRRA Woodend Structure Plan Archive

MRRA Kyneton Structure Plan Archive

MRRA Riddells Creek Structure Plan Archive



 NEW  Council To Go With Panel Recommendations for Woodend, Kyneton and Riddells Creek "Structure Plans"

(23/8/16) Growth endorsed, more development added - based on Council's shonky population figures, the towns and SHIRE don't have enough land for residential development!  How much is "enough" - we already had enough for 16,000 extra people?

On Wednesday 24 August (tomorrow) Macedon Ranges Council will vote on Panel recommendations for planning scheme amendments relating to Structure Plans:  C98 Woodend, C99 C103 and C105 Kyneton and C100 Riddells Creek.  The officer's recommendation is to adopt the Panel recommendations for each town.


Structure Plans were already compromised in amendments at Kyneton and Riddells Creek, where Council ditched exhibited Neighbourhood Character Studies in favour of its own unexhibited character Profiles.  After the panels hearings finished, Council sent panels info on population figures and growth (including figures from developers) that were deficient, and misleading, but led the panels to conclude the towns, and Shire, don't have enough land - in 2011, the Shire's Settlement Strategy said we had enough for another 16,000 people out to 2036.  How much growth and development does Council want?  More and more.


Woodend goes from most of the town in Neighbourhood Residential Zone to most being back in General Residential Zone, and a lot of that changed to 'preferred medium density' to boot.  Riddell is definitely getting another 250ha of growth areas (even though only 57ha was needed).  Kyneton - well, just let developers decide what the character will be in new development.  The amendments have been measured against State-wide and Melbourne standards, but there is no evidence they have been measured against the State government's intention to protect Macedon Ranges towns.  Oh, and the amendments focussed too much on character protection, not enough on development.


Council's also being a little bit naughty with the panel recommendations for the former Kyneton pool site (C103) and the Kyneton equine precinct (C105). 


Panel said put a Design and Development overlay over the pool site and include Urban Design Principles in it instead of stapling them to the Vendors Statement (as Council proposed).  Council's putting a Design and Development overlay on the pool site, but, um, not all the Urban Design Principles.  And, as you do, Council is authorising itself to waive the overlay's requirements. 


Panel said do a masterplan to support rezoning at the equine precinct near the Kyneton Racecourse, and explain what "equine-related activities" means.  Nup.  Council's going for the rezoning but not the masterplan.  Oh, and the way Council explained (or rather, didn't explain) what "equine-related activities" means is just fine.  No change.


And that, people, is how you reject panel recommendations when you don't have the balls to say you are doing it.


For more information:

Summary of Panel Recommendations for Woodend C98

Summary of Panel Recommendations for Kyneton (Structure Plan, C103 Kyneton pool site, C105 equine precinct)

Summary of Panel Recommendations for Riddells Creek C100

MRSC Residential Land Supply Assessment (Council's land supply assesment, sent to panels after the hearings)


MRRA Says:

This shows yet again that this Council couldn't be trusted as far as you could throw it.


These amendments support the type of growth you get in metropolitan growth areas.  They aren't going to produce what communities in these towns supported, because the amendments aren't implementing the Structure Plans for those towns.  They aren't compatible with "protecting" towns or the Shire.  The State government has final say on amendments, and it's preparing legislation to protect Macedon Ranges.  Vent at Council, register your views and concerns with the State government. 

Minister for Planning, Richard Wynne ;

Member for Macedon, Mary-Anne Thomas







TOWN STRUCTURE PLAN AMENDMENTS:  C98 (Woodend), C99 (Kyneton) and C100 (Riddells Creek)

See Report on Council Meeting 16 December 2015 for update

Thought Amendments C98 (Woodend), C99 (Kyneton) and C100 (Riddells Creek) Are Implementing Each Town's Structure Plan?  Think Again

(13/10/15 - P)   These amendments take the towns in a different direction to the Structure Plans Council adopted.  Substantial additions, deletions and changes have been made since the Structure Plans were adopted and it is these changes, not the Structure Plans, that are in the amendments.  Changes at Riddells Creek and Kyneton are so substantial, Council isn't even including the adopted Structure Plans as Reference Documents for the policies in these amendments.  Residents must make submissions to Council requesting their Structure Plans replace what's in these amendments by October 23.


C98 Woodend-Points to look for  (corrected to show both Woodend Structure Plan documents have been exhibited)

C99 Kyneton-Points to look for

C100 Riddells Creek-Points to look for


Here we have another example of some of the few things this Council seems to excel at:  deception, manipulation, not listening to its community. 


These three towns had considerable community consultation (compared with Council's usual consultation standards), with well respected consultants, which produced integrated Structure Plans, Neighbourhood Character Studies and recommendations for strong planning scheme controls to protect each town's character as it grows.  This fostered high community expectations that at last, towns would no longer have to be damaged by one suburban-style development after another. 


Council adopted these Structure Plans.  Now it has produced amendments that put something quite different in the planning scheme.  At Riddells Creek and Kyneton, Council hasn't just abandoned the Structure Plans, but their Neighbourhood Character Studies and Development Contributions Plans/Overlays as well. 


Council didn't say it had made these changes in the letters it sent to residents.  It also apparently didn't think it was necessary to consult communities about these substantial changes, before formalising them in a planning scheme amendment.  In fact, Council's comments in each amendment's Explanatory Reports seem to suggest community consultation and support for the Structure Plans was consultation and support for what is in the amendments.  It wasn't.


The changes focus on promoting growth, economic development and residential development - all very familiar themes from this Council.  Little of the Structure Plans' focus on environmental or community issues is included in the amendments (for example, at Kyneton protecting the Campaspe River's environmental values is translated into making sure development faces the River).  Population figures are inflated at Riddells Creek and Kyneton, and poor old Kyneton has somehow become the Large District Town in 2011 that the Settlement Strategy said it would be in 2036.  The Riddell and Kyneton Neighbourhood Character Studies have been replaced with Council's homogenised version of neighbourhood character, and Council's generic neighbourhood character precincts.  Woodend fares better, but changes and omissions in C98 weaken or misrepresent the Structure Plan's policy. 


MRRA has prepared some information about what to look for in these amendments to help residents understand the problems, and make submissions.   Links are provided above.


RESIDENTS OF THESE TOWNS, AND PARTICULARLY KYNETON AND RIDDELLS CREEK, ARE URGED TO MAKE SUBMISSIONS BY 23 OCTOBER.  This is a formal planning scheme amendment process, and you will only have formal 'standing' in that process if you have made a submission by the closing date.


In your submissions, ask Council to change the amendments to remove its rewritten policy, replace it with the Structure Plan's policy, reinstate Structure Plan Neighbourhood Character Studies, add stronger and more planning scheme controls to deliver Structure Plan findings, and re-exhibit the amendments for further community comment.  


Submissions (clearly identifying the amendment they relate to) must be sent to Strategic Planning and Environment, Macedon Ranges Shire Council, either at PO Box 151, Kyneton 3444, or emailed to


You can download each town's amendment documentation from Council's website by going to


MRRA Woodend Structure Plan Archive

MRRA Kyneton Structure Plan Archive

MRRA Riddells Creek Structure Plan Archive