Update on Coles Site Redevelopment

A Development Application for the “Coles Site “at 56 – 60 Burns Bay Road Lane Cove. was lodged on 17 August 2018 (DA 145/2018).

The site is to be redeveloped as Coles will, around mid 2020, relocate to the Rosenthal Complex now known as the Canopy.  Coles and ALDI will be the anchor tenants in this Canopy.  On the top level of the Canopy, there will be restaurants.  Lane Cove Council is currently seeking tenants for the restaurant area.


The Coles site is currently zoned B2 Local Centre.  This zoning permits a developer to construct housing above commercial premises.

The site is a prime redevelopment land; however, redevelopment of this site comes with some tricky problems.  The Lane Cove Council (LCC) owns the land and car park behind the Old Coles Building. The car park is commonly known as the “Coles Car Park”.  The car park is currently leased to Coles by the Lane Cove Council.  This lease will be surrendered when Coles relocates to the Rosenthal Complex in mid 2020.

Development Plans

The Developer is Sun Property Pty Ltd (SP).  The Developer is seeking consent for the demolition of existing structures and the development of the site for Mixed Uses.  The proposed mixed use development will involve the redevelopment of the Coles supermarket and amalgamation of two parcels of land. The total area of the development site is 3665 sqm.

The existing building will be demolished and replaced with a proposed mixed use building with two levels at the Burns Bay Road frontage and three levels at the Sera Street frontage. Above ground the development will look two buildings, however, the buildings will be connected by basement parking and supermarket level.
The development comprises:

  • Shops (Retail Premises including supermarket);
  • Restaurant (Food and Drink Premises);
  • Business premises;
  • Community Facility (possibly a performing arts centre);
  • Shop Top Housing, and;
  • basement car parking and servicing.

This proposal will occur over 56-60 Burns Bay Road and also seeks the acquisition of Council owned land, the Coles Cark Park, for incorporation into the development site. The acquisition of land and the contribution of public benefits are part of a Voluntary Planning Agreement.

The proposed development will result in a nett reduction in the retail floor area on the site from 2700m2 to 1800m2 , plus the addition of 22 residential apartments (including 5 SOHO apartments).  What is a SOHO apartment?  SOHO stands for Small Office, Home Office. It is a hybrid apartment for residential and commercial purposes and allows people to work and live in the same apartment.

The gross floor area of the proposed supermarket is 1,800m2.  Other gross floor area details are:

  • a restaurant at street level fronting Burns Bay Road with a floor area of 165m2 GFA;
  • a community space on Level 1 with a floor area of 780m2.

Will the Redeveloped Site include Car Parking?

Lane Cove Council is planning to enter into a Voluntary Planning Agreement (VPA) with SP.  The VPA would incorporate Lane Cove Council’s Land (approx. 18%) in the final plans.  Lane Cove Council will transfer ownership of the land to SP in return for the construction of a community space and car parking.  The VPA terms will provide that the developer is to be responsible for construction of the community space building shell, with the cost being offset by the VPA contribution from incorporating Council’s land. Actual construction costs will be determined by utilising a Quantity Surveyor.

The Car Park and Community Space will be located within the development.  The Car Park will be located underground. The Community Space will also be underground with a foyer on Burns Bay Road providing street access and would be accessible from the below ground car park.

Status of Development Application

The Development Application was subject to an independent assessment commissioned by Lane Cove Council. After the Lane Cove Council reviewed the independent assessment, the developer was asked to submit a revised DA and other documents including, a revised traffic and parking assessment report and a crime prevention through environmental design report.  An amended application was lodged by the developer in May 2019.  The matter is now being reviewed by Lane Cove Council.

Sera Street

Traffic on Sera Street has increased.  During peak hours it receives high usage.  At the moment it’s quite difficult to navigate.  It also provides access to a child care centre and the much used and loved Birrahlee Pre School.  You may have noticed traffic counters were installed at Sera Street last year.

The Lane Cove Council has advised the following in relation to Sera Street:

The redevelopment of the ‘Coles site’ provides the catalyst for Council to look at the overall Sera Street configuration. In particular, options to regularise its built form to deliver a higher level of functionality and safety as a road, similar to the way the ‘link road’ at the rear of the Market Square development regularised the through car park link to Austin Street that existed previously. This would include formalising new access arrangements from Sera Street to the area adjacent to Birrahlee Preschool, and adjacent shops. In light of the above, an additional point is proposed to be added to the recommendation:-Council undertake a study to develop options for Sera Street to deliver a higher level of functionality and safety as a road and provide appropriate access for properties should the ‘Coles site’ redevelopment proceed and when completed, a report be submitted to Council prior to undertaking Community Consultation. 

An artist’s impression of the Sera Street Frontage

Voluntary Planning Agreement

VPA’s are very popular with local councils.  A VPA is usually suggested when a local council requires a developer to fund infrastructure.  In this case the Lane Cove Council is keen for the developer to provide parking and a community space.  Representatives from the Lane Cove performing arts community asked that the Lane Cove Council consider using the proposed new community centre for performing arts and a theatrette/presentation space for groups such as:

  • Lane Cove Theatre Company;
  • Lane Cove Concert Band;
  • Local Dance Schools;
  • Sporting Groups to have end of season awards nights;
  • Local Community Groups to hold fundraisers with comedy acts, movie nights and more.

Lane Cove Council advertised their intention to enter into a VPA with the developer and sought comments on the VPA.  At the November 2018 Lane Cove Council meeting, Lane Cove Council resolved to enter into a Voluntary Planning Agreement with Sun Property Lane Cove Pty Ltd in respect of the development of 56-60 Burns Bay Road, Lane Cove”.  Lane Cove Council also resolved to commence a process to determine suitable uses and users of the community space, design options and a fitout budget.”

If the DA is approved when will Construction Commence?

Construction will not commence until Coles has relocated to the Canopy (aka Rosenthal Complex) – this is scheduled for mid 2020.  Please keep supporting the businesses located in the Coles Complex.  The retailing environment is tough at the moment and local businesses need your support.  Already the independent fruit and vegetable shop located under Coles has closed.

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