Churchill development ‘worth the investment’

A vacant expanse of land in Churchill’s town centre is the subject of a proposed development plan and Latrobe City Council wants residents to have their say.

The plan shows how 7.8 hectares of land that abuts Philip Parade could be developed for residential use and where roads, open space and infrastructure should be located.

It comes on the back of a land owner’s watchful eye for a need of such a development in the small, but growing Latrobe Valley town.

“It’s a good news story for Churchill, because obviously people are willing to invest there,” Latrobe City planning services manager Gail Gatt said.

However, before the developer can apply for a planning permit, they must show how the whole area will be integrated with the rest of the town.

“It’s just an extra planning tool to make sure we’re planning areas that will link in with their surrounding areas,” Ms Gatt said.

The draft plan proposes 86 lots that are mostly single dwellings, with 17 suggested to be medium density, such as small clusters of units or townhouses.

The land, bound by Eel Hole Creek to the east and Monash Way to the west, is under a residential growth zone that allows for increased housing density.

Latrobe City senior strategic planner Deanne Smith said council’s recent demographic work showed the number of single person households and ageing community members would grow.

When council heard from Churchill residents about its Live Work Latrobe project, they spoke of diverse housing close to the town centre and tree landscaping with a rural feel.

“So it’s (the draft development plan is) a really good driver to create some different types of housing close to town centres,” Ms Smith said.

“This is an opportunity to create some of that, but also keep it among a neighbourhood setting.”

Council is after community feedback to help inform how people travel through the area, how they would like to access Eel Hole Creek and what they think of the residential development proposed.

The draft plan is out for public viewing and comment until 5pm, Monday, 19 September, with an ‘open house’ information session scheduled in town for Wednesday.

To view the proposed Philip Parade Development Plan, visit or a council service centre.

The ‘open house’ public information session will be held on Wednesday at the Churchill Town Hall between 5pm and 7pm.

People are encouraged to drop in to the session any time to learn more about the plan, or they can book a meeting with a planning team member by phoning 1300 367 700.