Zoning changed to allow commerical development with shop top housing at Windsor

A significant site at the gateway to Windsor has been rezoned to allow a mixed use commercial and shop top housing development.

The site at 2-8 Hawkesbury Valley Way and 393-395 George Street consists of about 5000 square metres of land, and a council report stated it had the potential to play a significant role in the revitalisation of Windsor town centre.

Rezoning: Council has approved the rezoning of 2-8 Hawkesbury Valley Way and 393-395 George Street in Windsor. Picture: Geoff Jones.

Rezoning: Council has approved the rezoning of 2-8 Hawkesbury Valley Way and 393-395 George Street in Windsor. Picture: Geoff Jones.

Council staff recommended Hawkesbury Local Environment Plan (2012) be amended to allow rezoning of the site at the July 30 council meeting, and speaker Greg Hall told the meeting the site's owner had committed to working with council "to get a development there that everybody is happy with".

"This ... is a really significant site for development within the Windsor area," he said. "There's 5000 square metres worth of land there. There's not too many blocks in Windsor that would have that capacity to be able to have such a large development.

"This is a really important opportunity for council and for Windsor to be able to get a development on a gateway area on the main road, and also providing that link between the railway line and the Windsor town centre."

The proponent did not have plans for a specific development at this stage, however Mr Hall confirmed it would be a mixed development with a maximum of 10 residential units.

However, Michael Want raised concerns over heritage in the area, saying the site not only contained an old timber cottage - "Learholm" - which is listed as a heritage item with local significance, but was near other heritage items including the old Railway Hotel, old railway station, the cemetery, McQuade Park, and the two St Matthews churches.

"I'm not actually opposed to development, but I am opposed to development that wipes out the heritage and the heritage precinct of the area," Mr Want told the meeting.

"I think it's about time that council ... took the bull by the horns and made sure we protect our heritage areas as the community strategic plan says, and we improve on them.

"I don't think it's just to protect Learholm in this matter, it's the whole area that we're talking about."

Mr Want suggested council refer the matter to the Heritage Committee to look at the area as a whole, rather than just Learholm.

But Cr Tiffany Tree moved the recommendations to allow the rezoning.

"It's not a beautiful looking icon currently. I would like to see something happen with this site," she said.

Council voted to amend the LEP to allow the rezoning by 10 votes to one, with Cr John Ross voting against it.