Changes for unit proposal across the road from West Dapto prison site

Revised plans: Developers have agreed to scale back plans to build a multi-storey apartment complex on Darkes Road. Picture: Robert Peet. Inset artists impression: ADM Architects.
Revised plans: Developers have agreed to scale back plans to build a multi-storey apartment complex on Darkes Road. Picture: Robert Peet. Inset artists impression: ADM Architects.

The developers behind what could be West Dapto’s first multi-storey apartment complex have scaled back their plans, lodging a revised request for approval with Wollongong City Council.

First exhibited in January, the complex at 141 Darkes Road was proposed to have six apartment blocks and 124 units.

However, after meeting with council planners and design review panel, and the regional planning authority, they now hope to build five unit blocks, each four storeys, with a total of 116 apartments. About two-thirds would be two-bedroom homes. 

There will be 156 resident car spaces mostly accommodated in two basement areas under the apartments, as well as 24 parks for visitors and a total floor area of almost 10,000 square metres.

According to the new proposal, lodged by TCG Planning behalf of Wollongong based builder GC Property Holdings, the revised plans will create an “improved relationship between the buildings and future streets”.

There will also be better outcomes for vegetation, bush fire requirements and landscape design, the planners said.

The apartments are slated to replace a rural hobby farm, which is bounded by Darkes Road and West Dapto Road. A brick house, as well as sheds and other buildings will be demolished, but the new plans allow for a number of trees on site to be retained.

While the site is currently surrounded by farmland and rural homes, it will also neighbour the edge of the under-construction Lynden View Estate. 

And, since its first incarnation, it has been revealed that NSW Corrective Services is assessing land across the road from the apartment site for a minimum and maximum security prison.

The Southern Joint Regional Planning Panel will be the determining authority for the development application, which was originally valued at $37 million.

When complete, the West Dapto area – which covers the area west of the rail line from Kembla Grange south to Marshall Mount – will house more than 55,000 people, according to the council. 

It will have multiple town and village centres, including the Darkes Road town centre, which will be located across the road from the proposed development site.