Dickson Common Ground a step closer

Released 19/12/2019 - Joint media release

Common Ground in Dickson is a step closer to providing more homes for Canberrans facing chronic homelessness.

The ACT Government has applied an ‘Interim Effect’ to the proposed Territory Plan Variation for the site at Hawdon Place. This will place the project on a faster pathway to meeting the needs of vulnerable Canberrans.

Minister for Housing and Suburban Development Yvette Berry said the Common Ground housing model transitions people experiencing homelessness into permanent housing with the support they need to stay housed, to improve their connections to health, education and employment, and to live independently.

“Common Ground in Dickson will provide 40 social and affordable homes for people most in need and this is a great outcome that will allow for the project development to continue forward.

"A good secure home is fundamental to so many parts of life. Common Ground is about more than just putting a roof over someone’s head, it is about building community and building real support for people in need,” Minister Berry said.

Minister Gentleman said the Common Ground was an example of how the Government was working closely with the community to get good planning outcomes.

“I want to reassure locals that the much-loved trees along the Dickson channel are unaffected by this proposal. There is also a regulated tree on the Common Ground site that will be protected.

“The Territory Plan variation was available for community comment and Housing ACT conducted pre-Development Application community engagement for eight weeks on the proposed design.

“The proposed building has been presented to the National Capital Design Review Panel, which was supportive of the proposed building. The Legislative Assembly’s Standing Committee on Planning and Urban Renewal has also decided not to undertake an inquiry into the variation.

“Considering the extensive community and professional engagement on the project, I have decided to apply ‘interim effect’ to the Common Ground Territory Plan Variation.

“This means the Community Services Directorate can lodge a development application now and the independent Planning and Land Authority can make its decision as if the Territory Plan has already been varied.”

The ACT Government recently reconfirmed its commitment to establishing a Community Reference Group to further inform development and planning of the broader Section 72 project.

The Environment Planning and Sustainability Development Directorate is continuing discussions with Salvation Army regarding the future of Block 22 on Section 72.

The Territory Plan Variation and the consultation report is available at: www.act.gov.au/recommendedvariations

More information about section 72 is available at: https://yoursay.act.gov.au/dickson-section-72/section-72-urban-renewal.

- Statement ends -

Section: Yvette Berry, MLA | Media Releases

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