What you need to know

Proposed Moonee Valley Racecourse development

Since 2011 the Moonee Valley Racing Club (MVRC) have been planning for a major redevelopment of their racecourse site in Moonee Ponds.
We have been actively involved in the planning process, advocating on behalf of our community to ensure that any development on the site is appropriate and takes into consideration impacts on traffic, environment, heritage, and amenity.

September 2020 update

Work is commencing on the first stage of the residential development at the Moonee Valley Racecourse.

This involves the construction of the townhouse-style residences fronting McPherson Street, infrastructure and some internal roads. Hamton has appointed Camillo Builders Pty Ltd to undertake the construction of this stage which is anticipated to be completed March 2022.

As with all major developments a construction management plan (CSMP) has been prepared and approved by Council. This outlines hours of operation for work activities, site management responsibilities, together with outlining parking arrangements for workers and heavy vehicle movement routes. If you would like to access the approved CMP please see the attached document.

Should you have any enquires regarding CSMP please contact Council Development Engineering team (03) 9243 8880

May 2020 update

VCAT hearing to proceed

Today, VCAT have circulated an order stating that the hearing will proceed on 1-4 June 2020, via an online platform (i.e. Zoom).

By 4pm on 27 May, the parties and persons who have lodged statements of grounds must file with the Tribunal and serve on all parties an electronic copy of their submissions and associated material (such as photographs). These must be sent to admin@vcat.vic.gov.au

VCAT have further advised that they will contacted the parties prior to the hearing to assist with setting up for the hearing, and that technical support will be available during the hearing.


Council response to Amended Plans

Council has considered the amended plans circulated (detailed in the previous update), and advised the Tribunal and parties to the appeal it remains opposed to the proposal.

At the abovementioned hearing, Council will rely on the same grounds issued previously in relation to the original proposal.

For enquiries, please contact Council’s Statutory Planning Department on 9243 9111.

April 2020 update

VCAT Amended Plans

At present, this matter remains listed for a VCAT hearing on 1-4 June 2020. In accordance with VCAT protocol, the permit applicant has elected to formally amend the application in the lead up to the proceedings. The due date by which a statement of grounds must be lodged with VCAT is 8 May 2020.

The amended plans can be viewed on our planning page.

Notification of Council’s position on the amended plans will be provided to all relevant parties within the coming weeks.

For enquiries, please contact Council’s Statutory Planning Department on 9243 9111.

January 2020 update

Update on third stage planning application (MV/388/2019)

VCAT application lodged

On 10 January 2020 Council received notification from the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT), that an application for review was lodged by the permit applicant.

The application was made on the basis that a decision on the proposal had not been made within the prescribed 60 day timeframe.

The following hearing dates have been set:

  • a Practice day (procedural) hearing on 21 February 2020
  • a Compulsory conference (mediation), provisionally on 31 March 2020 – to be determined at Practice day
  • a four-day hearing, provisionally commencing on 1 June 2020 – to be determined at Practice day

Objections following public notification

A total of nineteen (19) objections were received during the public notification period.

In the coming days, each objector will be issued a copy of the VCAT application and associated forms to their nominated postal address.

Council position and assessment of the application

The application was discussed at the Development Assessment Panel on 12 December 2019. The discussion considered the objections received, the various referral advice provided, as well as the relevant planning assessment framework.

It was considered that in principle the application in its current form was unlikely to be supported. Key issues include the height, bulk and scale of the development as well as car parking and traffic impacts, amongst others.

Council will be finalising its detailed assessment and formalising its position for the upcoming VCAT proceedings shortly. Objectors will be given notice by mail and an update will be provided on this page.

For enquiries, please contact Council’s Statutory Planning Department on 9243 9111.

October 2019 update

Public notice of third stage planning application (MV/388/2019)

The planning permit application for the third stage of the Moonee Valley Racecourse development has been released on 28 October for the statutory 14-day public notification period. The application reference number is MV/388/2019.

A planning permit is required to:

  • Use land for the purpose of a food and drink premises and office in the Activity Centre Zone, Schedule 1 (Clause 37.08-2)
  • Construct a building or construct or carry out works in the Activity Centre Zone, Schedule 1 (Clause 37.08-5)
  • Construct a building or construct or carry out works, including fencing, in an Environmental Significance Overlay, Schedule 2 (Clause 42.01-2)

The application area encompasses approximately 7,300 square metres situated behind the first and second stage applications. The area is located approximately 50 metres east of McPherson Street, and has a partial frontage to Thomas Street spanning approximately 25 metres.

How to make a submission

Information on how to make a submission is provided here.

Note – Submissions can be accepted up until a decision is made on the application. Earlier submissions would allow for their thorough consideration, and for the applicant to potentially address any concerns within time.

For enquiries, please contact Council’s Statutory Planning Unit on 9243 9111.

The proposal is summarised as follows:

  • 314 dwellings including:
    • 90 one-bedroom apartments
    • 190 two-bedroom apartments
    • 32 three-bedroom apartments
    • 2 four-bedroom apartments
  • 8 dwellings provided as affordable housing
  • 14 office tenancies with a combined floor area of 1,225 square metres
  • 1 food and drink premises with a floor area of 137 square metres
  • 396 car spaces
  • 356 bicycle spaces
  • Buildings between 6 to 13 storeys with a maximum overall height of 43.5 metres
  • Extension of Kenna Street between the first stage and the future north-south road
  • Buildings and works within an Environmental Significance Overlay, associated with the Stone Pine trees to the south of the proposed buildings and Kenna Street extension

August 2019 update

MVRC announces updated vision - Moonee Valley Park

The Moonee Valley Racing Club and their development partners have released an updated vision for the redevelopment of the site, named Moonee Valley Park.

Further details are available at https://www.mooneevalleypark.com.au/ and https://thevalleytomorrow.com.au/.

Since the determination of the second stage development application, two new applications have been submitted to Council:

  • A multi-storey mixed use development containing a food and drink premises, offices and dwellings (MV/388/2019)
  • The redevelopment of the Tote Building for the purpose of a restaurant, a reduction in car parking and works associated with public open space (MV/462/2019)

Council will be in a position to provide details of these applications once requirements for further information have been satisfied.

For enquiries, please contact Council’s Statutory Planning Unit on 9243 9111.

April 2019 update

Development Assessment Panel

The minutes of the meeting can be accessed here: Public DAP meeting - minutes [pdf, 414KB]

Following Council’s resolution at its Ordinary Meeting on 9 April 2019, decisions on applications for the Moonee Valley Racecourse development will be facilitated by the Development Assessment Panel (DAP).

A DAP meeting was convened on 17 April 2019 at 5pm. The agenda and attachments can be accessed below.

Meeting Agenda [pdf, 943KB]
Attachment A – Original plans [pdf, 61.23MB]
Attachment B – Amended plans [pdf, 49.16MB]
Attachment C –Perspective images comparing original and amended building design [pdf, 45.3MB]
Attachment D – Staging Plan [pdf, 2.36MB]
Attachment E – Apartment Developments Assessment [pdf, 165KB]

For more information please contact Council’s Statutory Planning Unit on 03 9243 9111.

October 2018 update

Planning Assessment Special Committee meeting

The Moonee Valley Racing Club (MVRC) Planning Assessment Special Committee has been established under Section 86 of the Local Government Act 1989 to determine planning applications relating to the MVRC development.

The Committee will meet to discuss a planning application for 33 Dean Street, Moonee Ponds (application number MV/222/2018).

March 2018 update

Moonee Valley City Council Development Assessment Panel public meeting

A Development Assessment Panel meeting will be convened to determine Planning application MV/567/2016 – 2B McPherson Street, Moonee Ponds.

November 2017 update

MVRC announces its vision

On 22 November, MVRC released their vision for the redevelopment which includes:

  • a new grandstand, re-oriented racetrack and redeveloped infield activated for community and major event use
  • new community, business, recreation and leisure facilities
  • an adjacent residential precinct of 2,000 dwellings

Visit the MVRC website for more details on their vision.

Our focus has always been on ensuring that the best possible outcome for both the site and the local community is achieved and is consistent with the provisions of the Planning Scheme. We will continue to ensure that this is the case as more detailed plans are put forward.

To date no formal planning applications have been lodged with Council, however applications are anticipated in the first half of 2018.

Since August 2016, Council has been considering a separate application to repurpose the former Club Secretary’s House (known as 2B McPherson Street) as a childcare centre. A decision on this application is expected in early 2018.

August 2017 update

Transport Assessment and Management Plan and Integrated Transport Plan

In 2015 the State Government applied the Activity Centre Zone (ACZ) to the western end of the Moonee Valley Racecourse. The amendment facilitates the future development of the land for Residential and Mixed Use development. Read the requirements that the ACZ has in the May 2016 update below.

The ACZ states that:

  • A permit cannot be granted for use, development and/or subdivision of the whole or any part of Precinct 9 until a Transport Assessment and Management Plan and an Integrated Transport Plan are prepared to the satisfaction of the responsible authority, VicRoads and Public Transport Victoria.
  • The Transport Assessment and Management Plan and the Integrated Transport Plan must be based on an assessment of the likely transport impacts of the proposed full development of the whole of Precinct 9, recognising the staged development potential of the site over a 15 to 20 year timeframe.
  • Any permit granted in Precinct 9 must be consistent with the approved Transport Assessment and Management Plan and Integrated Transport Plan.

Moonee Valley Racing Club has now prepared a Transport Assessment and Management Plan and an Integrated Transport Plan, in consultation with VicRoads, Public Transport Victoria and ourselves.

VicRoads and Public Transport Victoria each advised that the two plans were satisfactory on 23 June 2017.

We have considered the content of each plan, together with the views of the relevant transport agencies. It is our intention to advise the Moonee Valley Racing Club that the Transport Assessment and Management Plan and the Integrated Transport Plan have been prepared to our satisfaction as the responsible authority.

The Transport Assessment and Management Plan:

  • Assesses likely movement implications from an indicative development proposal based on building scales agreed during 2015 planning scheme amendment.
  • Discusses appropriate mode share targets for the future developments.
  • Proposes treatments to mitigate impacts and encourage sustainable travel behaviour by future residents.
  • Outlines future road alignments and intersection treatments as well as identifies a proposed road hierarchy within the development, including concept designs for walking and cycling infrastructure.
  • Includes independent road safety audits of concept plans for the proposed mitigating treatments.

View the Transport Assessment and Management Plan: Part 1 (pdf, 6.3MB) and Part 2 (pdf, 7.4MB).

The Integrated Transport Plan:

  • Includes a review of proposed transport components and its integration with surrounding network.
  • Outlines walking and cycling connections from the Moonee Ponds Junction to the Moonee Ponds Creek Trail.
  • Outlines proposed pedestrian access arrangements from the activity centre to the racecourse (and vice-versa).
  • Includes staging plans to outline when mitigating treatments are required.
  • Prepares indicative car parking and bicycle parking rates for a proposed development that support the transport and movement objectives of the Moonee Ponds Activity Centre Zone.

View the Integrated Transport Plan (pdf, 5MB).

October 2016 update

The development of a plan for the Moonee Valley Racecourse site is a staged process and there is still a large amount of work to be undertaken by the Moonee Valley Racing Club before a final decision is made on a proposed development for the site. No formal planning application has been lodged with Council.

Council planning staff are in discussions with the Racing Club to ensure that prior to submitting a formal planning application, they adequately address a range of issues, including the approval of an Integrated Traffic and Transport Plan.

The draft Traffic and Transport plan is currently being analysed by Council and we will need to agree on the extent of traffic mitigation measures required to minimise the impact of the development on the surrounding area.

We are working very closely with the Racecourse to ensure any proposed development is in line with the requirements of the planning scheme and we will ensure the community is kept fully informed throughout the process.

Our focus will be on ensuring the best possible outcome for both the site and the local community.

May 2016 update

The Moonee Valley Planning Scheme has been amended to include the required changes within the Activity Centre Zone (ACZ). The Moonee Valley Racecourse (MVRC) is included within Schedule 1, Precinct 9 – Racecourse Residential and Mixed Use Precinct.

The ACZ requires that any planning application must be accompanied by a range of detailed information including a:

  • Staging Plan.
  • Environmentally sustainable design (ESD) statement.
  • Waste management strategy.
  • Transport assessment and management plan.
  • Integrated transport plan.
  • Serviced engineering infrastructure plan.
  • Environmental sustainable design plan.
  • Wind analysis.
  • Heritage impact statement.

A critical component of this is the Integrated Transport Plan (ITAP) which is expected to outline the demand for travel by people who will live, work or visit the site and target transport mode split to encourage walking, cycling and use of public transport by future residents. The ITAP will consider:

Existing and proposed public transport routes, stops and infrastructure (e.g. shelters, indented bays, signage, pedestrian crossings) within the site and surrounds.

  • Recommended car parking and bicycle parking rates and the location and layout of on-site car and bicycle parking areas and access to and from them.
  • Opportunities for providing improved public transport services and facilities.
  • The means proposed to address and mitigate the impacts of traffic generated by the development on the surrounding road network, including any unreasonable delays to public transport services, including:
    • Any required upgrades or modifications (e.g. road widening, re-allocation of road space, parking  restrictions, traffic and pedestrian signals, walking and cycling infrastructure improvements, and public transport improvements).
    •  estimated costs of the mitigation measures.
    • how and when the mitigation measures should be funded and delivered.

The ITAP must be completed to the satisfaction of VicRoads, PTV and Council. A rate of traffic generation for each use has now been agreed by all relevant parties. Council understands that consultants acting on behalf of the MVRC have commenced analytical work and preparation of the ITAP, and that outputs are expected in mid-2016.

The output from the ITAP will also be considered in terms of other development projects. Council will continue to work with, and guide the MVRC on the other relevant plans as outlined in the ACZ as needed. Council will continue to provide updates as more relevant information is made available to the community.

March 2015 update

Victorian Government approves planning scheme amendment for Moonee Valley Racecourse C155.

The government’s changes represent an improvement on the controls established by the previous state government and are more consistent with the recommendations of the Advisory Committee.

At this stage there is still uncertainty about the total number of dwellings that can be built on the site, with the government choosing not to impose a cap. These details will be determined subject to the proposed built form of any developments and the outcomes of an integrated transport plan for the site.

The government’s gazetted amendments do provide generally for lower preferred building heights, including mandatory heights abutting the residential areas along McPherson, Thomas and Dean Street.

We are pleased that the Heritage Overlay will remain in place and that the government has heeded council’s call for the provision of affordable housing as part of the development, by introducing an objective that 5 per cent of the development incorporate affordable housing.

We have also welcomed the government’s decision to ensure any developer contributions better reflect the true cost of providing road and transport improvements along with the provision of public open space to support the local community.

  • The new Activity Centre zone (incorporating the whole of the activity centre, including the western portion of the racecourse development site)
  • The Advisory Committee report

February 2015 update

On Tuesday, 24 February, Councillors debated their position on the Moonee Valley Racecourse proposal. This debate was timely given the change of Government and the rescission motion before Parliament.

The outcome of Tuesday night is that Council's position from 28 January 2014 remains.

Essentially this means that if development was to proceed on the racecourse site, Council would be advocating for no more than 1000 dwellings across the whole site.

Council would also be advocating for heights in line with the Advisory Committee's recommendations of between 11 metres (3 storeys) and 50 metres (16 storeys), which are to be mandatory heights.

This outcome is very different to the previous Planning Minister's decision where there was no cap on dwelling numbers and only preferred heights of up to 68 metres (22 Storeys).

Although planning controls have been implemented by the previous State Government, no decisions have been made by Council about any development on the site.

If the racecourse were to proceed with their plans, Council would first require them to undertake further work, including a comprehensive integrated traffic and transport plan.

If the motion before parliament is successful, the planning controls applied to the site by the previous State Government would be revoked (including the heritage overlay).

If the motion is unsuccessful the current planning controls would remain.

September/October 2014 update

In September the Minister for Planning introduced new planning controls for the Moonee Valley Racecourse site.

These amendments to the Moonee Valley Planning Scheme essentially provide the guidelines or requirements for development applications on the site.

  • The Minister’s decision allows the racing club to proceed to the development application stage
  • The Minister’s decision allows the site to be developed into a mix of racing, residential and retail uses.

Where an application generally meets the height and design requirements, the new planning controls mean it will be exempt from public notification and review rights at VCAT.

A Heritage Overlay has also been applied to most of the site. This will help protect the heritage significance of the racecourse by triggering a planning permit requirement for most buildings and works, including demolition.

We have undertaken a full analysis comparing the Minister’s decision about the planning controls with the recommendations made by his Advisory Committee. The main key differences that are of concern are outlined below:

Advisory Committee Recommendations Minister’s decision - Approved Amendments C120 and C124
Reduce the total number of dwellings by about 20 per cent from the 2,500 proposed in the Master Plan This recommendation has been ignored by the Minister for Planning. There is no limit on the total number of dwellings permissible on the site.
Maximum preferred building heights of 20 storeys or 50 metres, with preference for lower heights outlined in the ACZ. The building heights recommended by the Advisory Committee have been exceeded. The CDZ (Schedule1) proposes a preferred maximum height of 68 metres.
The Committee encourages the Club to look at opportunities to share facilities as an act of goodwill with the community (i.e. centre of the racetrack). This recommendation has been ignored by the Minister for Planning.
Include a requirement to provide five per cent of the development as affordable housing. This recommendation has been ignored. There is no requirement for the provision of affordable housing.


Council is still the planning authority for the site.

Council still believes that further work needs to be undertaken by the racecourse before any planning applications can proceed for the site. In particular we believe further work needs to happen around:

  • traffic and transport impacts
  • the implications of the East West Link project on the area
  • the timing of the delivery of key infrastructure, including roads, access ways and parks, to support the development.

This information will need to be provided by the racecourse with any application submitted.

Council officers have prepared an update report for Councillors, which provides more information on the Minister’s decision and local impacts.

Amendments C120 and C124 make the following changes:

Western Land

  • Rezones the land to a Comprehensive Development Zone (Schedule 1). This contains discretionary controls for building setbacks and heights.
  • Introduces a Comprehensive Development Plan as an Incorporated Document in the planning scheme.
  • Introduces a Heritage Overlay, conservation policy and permit exemptions.

Racing Land

  • Amends the Special Use Zone (Schedule 2) that currently applies to the racecourse area.
  • Introduces a Heritage Overlay, conservation policy and permit exemptions.

North-East Land

  • Rezones the land to a Mixed Use Zone (Schedule 2)
  • Introduces a Design and Development Overlay. This contains discretionary controls for building setbacks and heights.
  • There are no heritage controls on this part of the Racecourse site.

September 2014 update

In response to the Minister for Planning’s announcement about the rezoning of the racecourse land, we have now written to him:

  • expressing our disappointment that we were not advised of the decision prior to that information being in the media
  • outlining the process we followed in attempting to negotiate the memorandum of understanding with the racing club
  • requesting that Council remains the responsible authority for the site.

It has been over two weeks since the Minister made the announcement and we have not yet received any details about the new zone.

August 2014 update

Council is extremely disappointed with the Minister’s decision regarding the rezoning of Moonee Valley Racecourse land and very unhappy not to have been consulted or informed before the announcement was made.

We have not yet received any notification or details from the State Government so are unable comment on any specifics of the Minister’s decision at this time.

It is Council’s view that there are many issues still unresolved. We now need to work to understand what the comprehensive development zone means for the recommendations of the Advisory Committee, the draft Memorandum of Understanding, and all our work to date with the community.

We will be seeking immediate clarification from the Minister and the racecourse and will keep the community informed as we find out more about the decision and its implications.

June 2014 update

On 29 April, we wrote to the Minister for Planning asking him to prepare, adopt and approve applying the Heritage Overlay for the racecourse site (Amendment C124). See 23 April update below for the relevant documents.

We also distributed a draft proposed Memorandum of Understanding to all relevant parties, and will work towards getting this finalised.

March 2014 update

We have developed a draft Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), which will shortly go to all relevant parties to be reviewed.

The purpose of the MOU is to:

  • ensure there is a shared understanding of the outstanding items from the master plan that need to be resolved
  • provide a process in which all relevant parties can work cooperatively together

In February, we met with Minister for Public Transport Terry Mulder’s office to provide an update on the MOU and also to stress the importance of resolving public transport issues associated with this master plan.

We have developed a draft Conservation Management Plan (CMP) for the racecourse site as part of applying Heritage Overlays. This has been sent to the racing club for comment. A report will go to the Council meeting on 29 April to consider the final version for the Heritage Overlays for the site.

Once Council has made a final decision to adopt the Heritage Overlays, this will then be sent to the Minister for Planning requesting approval.

January 2014 update

We have now considered the Advisory Committee’s report on the racecourse master plan and have made comments on their recommendations.

In summary, we were pleased with recommendations involving:

  • heritage and the protection of certain sites on the land
  • increasing the open space
  • allowing for some affordable housing
  • supporting the need for the racecourse to fund local community facilities and upgrades
  • more work and analysis needing to be done on the impacts on transport, traffic and parking

We continue to have some concerns with the proposed density and heights of the master plan. We strongly believe the further analysis around transport and traffic needs to be completed before any decisions are made on this.

We also feel that there needs to be a clear way forward to resolve:

  • potential amenity impacts of the grandstand
  • the provision of access for the community to the centre of the track on non-race days for recreational use

The next steps involve getting started on the heritage work and developing a Memorandum of Understanding with the racing club, Vic Roads and Public Transport Victoria to ensure a clear process is put in place in relation to the further work needed on master plan.

For more information see the full report.

Council receives Advisory Committee Report

We have received the report from the Advisory Committee (pdf, 2.6MB) on the Moonee Valley Racecourse Master Plan and associated amendment documents.

We are not in a position to comment in detail on the report at this stage. We want to take some time to thoroughly assess the report first. However we did want to make it publicly available so the community could also read and digest the information.

We will be working over the Christmas period to go through the report, with the aim of providing a comprehensive response and getting a Council report to the meeting cycle in late January.

As the Planning Authority, we will be strongly encouraging the Minister for Planning to allow us to take this time to thoroughly consider the report.

We will be looking to meet with him early in the new year to discuss the report and to ensure we work together to obtain the best outcome for the community.

We will also be looking to meet with the Department of Transport, Planning and Local Infrastructure, the Moonee Valley Racing Club and the Advisory Committee in the new year.

October 2013 update

On 2 October 2013, the State Government’s Advisory Committee commenced a public hearing to further progress the assessment process of the Moonee Valley Racecourse Master Plan, and associated planning scheme amendments. The public hearing concluded on Thursday 24 October, after 13 hearing days.

We are well prepared for the proceedings where our legal representation built upon our original submission. We called experts in the relevant fields of community infrastructure, traffic, heritage, planning and design, who presented evidence on our behalf.

The next stages in the process involves the Advisory Committee taking on board all the feedback presented at the hearing and throughout the process and then drafting a report with recommendations that will come to both the Minister for Planning and Council. The report is due by 19 December, 2013.

We are still the Planning Authority for the purposes of making a decision on the proposal. When the Advisory Committee's report is received, we will be assessing it thoroughly, putting forward its own recommendations and then making a decision or determination on the master plan. We must justify any decision that is not in accordance with the Advisory Committee’s recommendations.

September 2013 update

30 September

The next step in the racecourse master plan process is the Public Hearings. These hearings, which are being run by the State Government’s Advisory Committee commence this week on Wednesday 2 October.

We have been preparing for these hearings over the past few months. We have engaged legal representation and  experts in the relevant fields to appear at the Committee hearing.

18 September

On Monday 16 September there was an interview on ABC 774 with the Planning Minister Matthew Guy. In this interview the Minister indicated that he was not involved in the process and if residents had feedback on the racecourse master plan they should contact Council.

It is important for residents to understand that the Minister has set up an advisory committee to run the process involving the assessment of the racecourse master plan. His advisory committee has just completed a six week consultation process where they received submissions from the community, government departments and Council.

Our submission was officially endorsed at a formal Council meeting on 3 September.

A Notice of Motion (NOM) was passed at that Council meeting and minor amendments to the document were made before sending it the Advisory Committee. The NOM asked for the removal of any references in the document proposing a specific dwelling density or building height.

Community input from two information sessions held in August helped inform Council's submission.

Copies of the following documentation in relation to the Moonee Valley Racecourse master plan are available through the Moonee Valley Racing Club website:

  • Moonee Valley Racecourse Master Plan
  • Preface Report, Moonee Valley Racecourse Master Plan
  • DCE Functional Track Report
  • Populous Grandstand and Racing Operations
  • PLUS Architectural Statement
  • GTA Transport Report
  • ASR MVRC Community Infrastructure Stage 2 Assessment
  • Arup - ESD Opportunities Summary Report
  • DCE Infrastructure Servicing Report
  • Lovell Chen Heritage Assessment

June 2013 update

18 June

We have responded to the questions asked by the State Government's Advisory Committee about the revised racing club's master plan.

While the revised master plan does make some concessions in terms of the scale of the proposed development, it still does not address some key issues that Council previously raised with the club. There are still concerns that the proposed master plan does not provide enough detail. Some of the gaps include:

Car parking and traffic congestion
The revised plan does not adequately show how the substantial increase in vehicles in the area will be managed. This includes both daily vehicle movements and vehicle movements when events and races are taking place.

Public access and safety
We have concerns over the proposed access to the racecourse, where the majority of patrons would be funnelled through a single entry point.

Layout of the site, new residential buildings and the new grandstand
Council doesn’t feel that the proposed layout is the best outcome for the site, and it is of concern that there would potentially be a negative impact on neighbouring properties.

Lack of significant open space
The location and size of open space within the site is insufficient.

Public transport capacity
The revised plan has still not addressed how the significant increase in demand for public transport in the area would be managed.

Drainage and infrastructure impacts
The site has significant drainage issues that have not been considered in the design of the master plan.

Heritage and significant trees
The proposed development would not retain any important heritage features of the site.

We are now waiting for the Advisory Committee to confirm the next stages in the process and dates of when they will undertake community consultation.

6 June

The Moonee Valley Racecourse Advisory Committee recently met with Council and key stakeholders. The purpose of the meeting was for the Moonee Valley Racing Club (MVRC) to present a revised version of their master plan and to inspect the site.

At this meeting the Advisory Committee also reiterated that the process was also about considering the Heritage Overlays proposed by Council for the site.

The revised master plan suggests an additional population of 4,500 people in 2,500 new dwellings, and more frequent use of the racecourse, including an increase in the number of night races.

The revised master plan has been prepared by the MVRC and is provided for information purposes only and has not as yet been considered by the Advisory Committee and may not be the final form which is exhibited during the consultation process. No comments are required to be made at this time.

The revised master plan will be available this week on the MVRC website. Copies of the relevant documents will be available for viewing at the Civic Centre on Kellaway Avenue and in local libraries.

It should be noted that this is preliminary material only and the master plan and heritage documents may change prior to the Advisory Committee putting them out on consultation.

This master planning process is being conducted by the Advisory Committee and therefore is not a Council process. Further information on the process can be obtained from the Advisory Committee’s website.

Council staff are now assessing the revised master plan. Our response is due to the Advisory Committee 14 June 2013.

April 2013 update

Moonee Valley Racecourse - Advisory Committee

We have been formally advised by the Minister for Planning that he has released the Final Terms of Reference and that he has appointed members to the Advisory Committee on Monday 15 April 2013. The members are:

  • Kathy Mitchell  - Chair
  • Stephen Hancock
  • Ann Keddie
  • Lucinda Peterson
  • Gordon Anderson

As the Advisory Committee has been established by the Minister for Planning and is administered by the Department of Planning and Community Development, Council is guided by their timetable, and requirements.

The Terms of Reference dictate that the Advisory Committee is to have completed 'Stage 1: Review and Consultation' by 8 July 2013. Following this the DPCD will be undertaking a consultation program for a six (6) week period, where members of the community will be able to review material, make a submission and request to be heard at the Advisory Committee hearing.

Based on the timing outlined in the Terms of Reference, 'Stage 3: Public Hearing', is likely to commence around the end of September 2013 with a Directions Hearing.

If all goes to plan a report should be produced by the Committee, with a recommendation to the Minister in December 2013.

The Minister has stated that Council is to remain the responsible authority for the site. However, the Minister has not explicitly stated that Council is also to remain the planning authority for the site, following the completion of the Advisory Committee process.

The Council will continue to seek his assurances and confirmation on this matter.

March 2013 update

We received notification from the Minister for Planning on Monday 25 March 2013 that he has approved Terms of Reference for the Advisory Committee in relation to the Moonee Valley Racecourse site (letter dated 19 March 2013).

The Advisory Committee has not yet been appointed.  This means that the timing, as mentioned in the Terms of Reference, has not yet officially commenced.

Outlined below are the key changes and inclusions in the final Terms of Reference, from Council’s response to the original draft version.

The Minister also confirmed that the request for interim heritage controls at the Moonee Valley Racecourse site (Planning Scheme Amendment C126) was refused on 6 December 2012. The Minister reiterated that he believed intervention in heritage matters in advance of an Advisory Committee process, would not result in the fair, orderly and sustainable consideration for development of land.

Key changes to the Draft Terms of Reference are:

  • Agreed to changes to skill set of the Advisory Committee to include community facilities and social planning, environmental sustainability, geotechnical and hydrological skills.
  • Amended the references to Moonee Valley Racing Club found within the MV Planning Scheme, and its importance.
  • Agreed to expand the number stakeholders that the Advisory Committee must meet with and includes key agencies, Save Moonee Ponds group and Moonee Ponds Central School.
  • Agreed that the Advisory Committee should review and comment on Council’s request for further information and community submissions to the Moonee Valley Racecourse Master Plan from the consultation in June 2011.
  • The final Terms of Reference does not incorporate Council’s previous inclusion that the Advisory Committee hold a community forum, to inform itself of community concerns and feedback.
  • Agreed to extension of the exhibition of the draft Amendment and Master Plan, from four (4) to six (6) weeks.
  • The final Terms of Reference does not incorporate Council’s requirement that all consultation must be agreed to by the Moonee Valley City Council prior to exhibition.
  • Agreed to include a requirement for the Advisory Committee to consider all of the information already prepared by the Council, including the previous request for further information.
  • The final Terms of Reference does not require the final written report to the Moonee Valley City Council and the Minister for Planning to include a response in relation to Council’s further information request of 2 February 2012.
  • Requires the written report to include a recommendation from Council as to whether the project should proceed or not.
  • Agreed to include a recommendation on the appropriate planning controls that would best implement the master plan.
  • Includes the ability for the Advisory Committee to seek to vary the Terms of Reference. This was not in the initial drafted Terms of Reference.
  • The final ToR does not include Council’s request that if further information is required,  the Advisory Committee should require that the information be provided within one month, and then the timing for Stage 1 of the process will recommence from the date of the further information request.

December 2012 update

19 December

We have developed our official response to the Minister for Planning in relation to his letter and terms of reference for an Advisory Committee for the Moonee Valley Racecourse Master Plan proposal.

We have restated in our response that we do not support the Advisory Committee process because we consider that there is still inadequate information provided by the racing club in relation to their proposal. This makes it very difficult for us and the community to make an informed decision about it.

Below is a brief outline of some of the key points made in our response to the Minister:

  • The Minister has stated that Council is to remain the responsible authority for the site. However, the Minister has not explicitly stated that Council is also to remain the planning authority for the site. We seek his assurances and confirmation on this matter.
  • We feel it is premature to consider planning scheme amendment documents in conjunction with the proposed master plan process. If resolved, the master plan would inform what should go in an amendment. The master plan is still unresolved.
  • We urge the Minister to consider heritage issues independently to the master plan proposal, as the proposed master plan should not influence whether or not there are places on the site that warrant heritage protection.
  • We want the Advisory Committee to consider the work that Council has prepared to date on this issue. Our work involves a comprehensive analysis on number of issues, and outlines where further information is required in order to make an informed decision on the proposal.
  • We want the Advisory Committee to consult at an early stage with key stakeholders like Vic Roads, Department of Transport, Public Transport Victoria, community groups and residents.
  • We feel it is important that the terms of reference provide more details in relation to how the Committee will consult with the community.

For more information, read our letter (pdf, 161Kb) and response (pdf, 549KB) to the Minister.


10 December

We have received notification from the Minister of Planning about his intention to establish an advisory committee in relation to the Moonee Valley Racecourse proposed master plan.

Today we received via email a letter (pdf, 572KB) and terms of reference (doc, 180KB) for the advisory committee.

DPCD have provided us two weeks to respond to the terms of reference.

At this stage we are looking over the terms of reference and will put together a report to be considered at the 18 December Council meeting, allowing us to formally respond to the Minister.

We have commented in the past that we do not feel this is the preferred method for managing this process but it is essential that we participate and provide feedback on the terms of reference. Further information will be added to this page following the Council meeting on 18 December.

July 2012 update

We have now provided feedback to the racing club (pdf, 462KB) in relation to their response to our further information request (pdf, 1.2MB).

In summary we are still not completely satisfied with the level of detail provided by the racing club in their master plan proposal. The areas we are particularly concerned about continue to be:

  • building heights, setbacks and character
  • the justification around what we believe is lack of open space
  • the proposed location of the grandstand
  • their traffic and public transport modelling

We are also still committed to the heritage issues on the site to be resolved before any action is taken with the master plan proposal including community consultation.

The next steps are now in the hands of the racing club. They need to decide how they want to proceed with their proposal.

May 2012 update

25 May

We have received further information from the racing club in relation to their master plan proposal. We requested this information after undertaking an initial assessment of the master plan proposal.

Following this, a report with recommendations will be presented to Councillors, which will also outline options for the next steps going forward.

As reported in the media, we have read that the Minister for Planning has decided he will not intervene in the process and is happy to leave Council as the planning authority. We are currently trying to confirm this information as we have not had official notification from the Minister about this decision. More information about this is below in the 16 May update.

16 May

Moonee Valley Racecourse has contacted the Minister for Planning asking him to intervene in relation to their master plan proposal.

We strongly oppose this course of action. We have written to the Minister outlining our objection to him intervening in this process.

We have made it very clear to the State Government that we want to remain the planning authority for this proposal.

We do not want this proposal to be fast tracked or to have its own process and we want the community to be involved and consulted.

We are also encouraging the Minister to respond to our request for interim heritage controls over three sections of the site in accordance with a recent heritage study by Council and permission for us to commence a formal planning process to potentially apply a heritage overlay over these sections.

C100 and Moonee Valley Racecourse proposal

Amendment C100 proposes to change the zoning for the majority of the Moonee Ponds Activity Centre. It does not include rezoning the racecourse site.

This proposed zoning change (or Amendment C100) aims to enable guided, planned and long-term change to take place in the activity centre, but not at the racecourse site. This site is being treated separately.

We consulted on Amendment C100 in late 2011. Submitters to the consultation period were heard by an independent panel in April.

April 2012 update

Consultants have now completed a heritage assessment of the Moonee Valley Racing Club site.

The consultant's report identifies three significant places considered worthy of heritage protection.

These are:

  • Club Secretary’s house and garden
  • S.R Burston Stand
  • a precinct at the south west corner of the site consisting of a number of significant structures, trees and gardens including the Alister Clark Rose Garden, Manikato Garden, main tote, horse stalls and birdcage, brick perimeter fence, saddling paddock and parade ground.

We have asked the Minister for Planning for interim heritage controls for these sites and for permission to commence the official planning process to get these controls included in the Moonee Valley Planning scheme. The aim of the interim controls is to provide protection over these sites while the official planning process is undertaken.

The official planning process for the heritage report is outlined below:

  • We will put the heritage report out on community consultation once we receive authorisation from the Minister
  • A report will then come back to Councillors on the results of the consultation
  • If there are objections to the report an independent panel is established to hear those submissions
  • The panel will then make a recommendation to us before a final decision is made.
  • If the report is adopted at this point we will amend our planning scheme to include the heritage controls over the racecourse site. This process is called a planning scheme amendment.

For more information on the heritage issue please contact us on 9243 8888.

Our assessment and external consultant's reports

In February, we completed our initial assessment of the Moonee Valley Racing Club master plan proposal. This included an assessment summary document and six related reports which are provided below.

These documents and the process we have followed to date will be formally noted at the Council meeting on Tuesday, 20 March 2012.

No decisions about the master plan are made in this part of the process. This part of the process is about making sure the racing club have provided adequate and correct information as part of their submission.

Our assessment summary document (pdf, 873KB) and related reports are also available in hard copy at the Civic Centre and all local libraries.

Report Author
Appendix 1 Development Guidelines (pdf, 3.93MB) McGauran Gianni Soon Architects Pty Ltd (MGS Architects)
Appendix 2 Traffic and Transport (pdf, 644KB) CPG Australia Pty Ltd
Appendix 3 Community Infrastructure (pdf, 1.7MB) Macroplan Australia Pty Ltd
Appendix 4 - Public Open Space (pdf, 560KB) Thompson Berrill Landscape Design Pty Ltd in association with Environment & Land Management Pty Ltd
Appendix 5 Environment and Climate Change (pdf, 688KB) Our Environment and Economic Development Department
Appendix 6 Social Impact Assessment (pdf, 153KB) Capire Consulting Group

Draft master plan

A copy of the draft master plan for the Moonee Valley Racing Club (MVRC) and a proposal to rezone their land is below.

The draft master plan outlines how the land could be developed into the future. It provides broad development guidelines. It does not provide specific development detail.

The rezoning proposes to change the zone of the land from a Special Use Zone (Racecourse) to an Activity Centre Zone to allow greater mix of uses on the site, including residential development.


Community information meeting

In December 2011, we held two community meetings to provide information about the process for assessing the draft master plan and rezoning proposal.

For more information on the topics covered at the community information sessions you can view our information session slideshow presentation (pdf, 1.60MB) and the Save Moonee Ponds presentation (pdf, 1.34MB).

A summary of the assessment process

Below is a summary of the process we will undertake to assess the draft master plan and rezoning proposal, including when community consultation is likely to take place. We are still at stage 1.

Stage 1 - Initial Assessment: We will review the information provided by MVRC, and seeks further information to address any outstanding issues.

Stage 2 - Exhibition and submissions: We would then ask the Minister for Planning for authorisation to put the draft master plan and rezoning out on community consultation (this is called a Planning Scheme Amendment).

If ministerial authorisation is given, we would then undertake community consultation on the proposed master plan and rezoning. Asking the Minister for authorisation could take some time. This could mean that consultation is likely to take place in the first half of 2012.

This stage is likely to involve Council asking for an independent panel to be established to hear submissions from the community.

Stage 3 - Decision: Following consultation, we would then make a decision whether or not to adopt the draft master plan and rezoning after taking into account a range of factors including:

  • state and local policies
  • community feedback
  • recommendations from the independent panel
  • expert advice and analysis
  • impact of proposal.

In relation to making a decision we could decide to:

  1. adopt the master plan and rezoning with no changes
  2. adopt the master plan and rezoning with changes
  3. not adopt the master plan and rezoning.

If we do not adopt the master plan or rezoning we would continue to negotiate with MVRC to ensure key concerns and objectives were incorporated into their vision for the future of their site.

Following a decision, we would then present our decision to the Minister for Planning, who would make the final decision on the proposal.

If the master plan was approved or a version of the master plan approved it would be included into the Moonee Valley Planning Scheme along with a set of guidelines for future development of the site.

Stage 4 - Development: If the master plan and rezoning was approved a developer would then be able to apply for planning permits to develop the site, in accordance with the requirements of the new zone.

We are now at Stage 1 of the process. This stage is about explaining the process to you and undertaking an initial review of the proposal.

Community consultation in 2012

The draft master plan and rezoning is not currently on consultation. It is expected that the draft master plan and rezoning would be on consultation with the community in the first half of 2012.  It is at this stage of the process that you will have an opportunity to make a submission in relation to the proposal.

Please note that any submissions received outside of the consultation period cannot be considered. This is because the draft master plan may change before it goes out on consultation. So please ensure you hold off on sending us your submission until the official consultation period in 2012.

Background - Moonee Ponds Activity Centre Structure Plan

In 2010, we adopted the Moonee Ponds Activity Centre Structure Plan (MPACSP), which includes the racecourse precinct. This structure plan was developed because the State Government had nominated Moonee Ponds as a ‘Principal Activity Centre’. These centres are expected to take on increased population density and develop into vibrant urban areas that have good access to public transport and services.

The Moonee Valley Racecourse precinct will experience increased growth and housing density as outlined in MPACSP. We want to ensure that future growth in this area is planned, is in the best interests of the community and meets the needs of a growing municipality and a growing Melbourne. The best way to do this is to have a long term place in place.

As part of MPACSP it was recommended that the racecourse develop its own master plan to outline their future intentions for this precinct.

Frequently asked questions

Following the community information sessions held in December 2011, we have developed a second question and answer sheet (doc, 38KB). Please also see the first question and answer sheet (doc, 52KB) for more information. You can also print this information in hard copy as a fact sheet (pdf, 417KB).

We have also created some multilingual fact sheets that can be printed and distributed as required.