Heritage Overlay

To gain a planning permit for buildings and works in a Heritage Overlay, several additional steps must be taken in the planning process.

Purpose of the Heritage Overlay
The purpose of the Heritage Overlay is to protect properties that have heritage value, meaning that individual sites or whole precinct areas may be covered. To be placed on the Heritage Overlay, a site needs to form a contributory element to the heritage of the area. This could be in the form of an old homestead, cottage, hospital, school, church or other significant building.

Exemptions from the Heritage Overlay controls
The protection provided by a Heritage Overlay varies in each scenario, though the controls apply to built structures and the land they are built on. In the instance of a precinct wide Heritage Overlay, some non-contributory buildings are exempt from the controls.

Get the right advice early in the process
If the site you’re looking to develop is covered by a Heritage Overlay, you should first discuss your proposal with your Architect and Town Planner. As each site under the Heritage Overlay has a different level of controls, any work at all to the building or site will require a planning permit, ensuring that a higher level of scrutiny on your application occurs.

We can work closely with you and your local council to ensure your proposed design complies with the relevant Heritage controls, ensuring a smooth ride through the planning approval process.

Demolition of a building in the Heritage Overlay
Being able to demolish or partially demolish a building depends on a number of factors. The purpose of the Heritage Overlay is to protect the heritage significance of a building, place or area.

If the heritage place is individually significant, or if it contributes to the significance of an area, a permit for demolition may be refused. If a planning permit is refused, it is possible to have this decision reviewed by VCAT, however the justification for demolition must be strong to have any chance of success. Remember: VCAT doesn’t automatically overturn a Council’s decision, and any preparation for a VCAT Hearing should include advice from specialist consultants.

Does the Heritage Overlay affect my property value?
We hear this question a lot, and in our experience we’ve found the Heritage Overlay to impact positively on the value of a property, particularly on site specific Heritage Overlays.

The Heritage Overlay should not negatively impact the value of your property as heritage controls do not prohibit development, subdivision or demolition but require that approval be obtained. Where there is the ability to develop the site without compromising the heritage significance of the place, the impact on property values may not be as great as where the capacity for further development is more restricted.

Current Heritage Projects
We have experience gaining planning approvals on Heritage listed properties all over Melbourne.

Our current heritage projects include:
– Single Dwelling Additions and Alterations – Yarraville, Maribyrnong City Council
– Single Dwelling Additions and Alterations – Keele Street, Collingwood, Yarra City Council
– VCAT Objection against inappropriate development – Carlton, City of Melbourne
– Proposed Medium Density Residential Development – Glen Eira Road, Elsternwick, Port Phillip City Council
– Single Dwelling Additions and Alterations – Brunswick Road, Brunswick, Moreland City Council
– VCAT Objection against inappropriate development – Armadale, City of Stonnington

We have successfully completed heritage projects in the following areas:
– Moreland
– Bayside
– Melbourne
– Boroondara
– Greater Dandenong
– Monash
– Kingston
– Whitehorse
– Stonnington
– Hobsons Bay
– Darebin
– Yarra
– Maribyrnong
– Moonee Valley

What do I do now?

One of the best starting points when considering your next project is to complete a Preliminary Development Assessment and finding out what opportunities and constraints will affect the future prospects for your site.

Our Preliminary Development Assessment analyses the Heritage issues and identifies a way to address these through a range of development options. More often than not, development opportunities still exist despite the Heritage controls which may affect your property.