Here we go again with yet another Development Application (DA20211185) for an inappropriate adaptive re-use of the iconic heritage building at 39 Alexandra Street, currently leased by The Lost & Found Department homewares outlet.

The new proposal is another attempt to over-develop this historic site with alterations and additions for shop-top housing with residential accommodation, a retail shop and a licensed restaurant seating 35-40 patrons operating from 7.00am to 10.00pm (in reality likely to be in operation around 18 hours per day).

If you feel that this iconic building deserves to remain the well-loved community asset it currently is, make your views known to Council at by 24 Sept 2021.  Read the Trust’s submission here Submission re 39 Alexandra St

It is difficult to think of a more inappropriate use of this property. Restaurants are not in short supply in Hunters Hill. In fact, there are 3 within 50m of this site, as well as 4 more in Woolwich, barely 1km away, the Hunters Hill Club a few hundred metres distant and a clutch of eating establishments on Ryde and Gladesville Roads near the Hunters Hill Hotel. The Trust considers the civic importance of this corner location unsuitable for this type of development for the following reasons:

1.    The Plan is for a 2 storey modern extension to the heritage building with increased height, no setback, inappropriate materials and lack of landscaping – particularly unsuitable for a site opposite The Garibaldi Inn, one of Hunters Hill’s few State Heritage Listed structures.
2.    There is no mention of protecting the building’s interior which boasts many outstanding heritage features.
3.    The proposed hours of operation (minimum) 15 hours per day are far too long for a quiet neighbourhood and twice those of its previous approval.
4.    There are no parking facilities available for the commercial portion of the building, which would mean a large number of patrons and staff trying to park in the surrounding area between 6.00am and midnight, seriously affecting residents in nearby streets and leading to traffic problems on already congested Alexandra and Ferry Streets.
5.    The question of pedestrian safety due to the increased foot traffic has not been addressed.  The premises are directly on a dangerous corner on a busy road where there have been previous pedestrian accidents, one of them fatal.
6.    There is no reference to the management of a licensed premises.  This will have particular relevance to the amenity of the adjoining historic landmark of All Saints Church and the potential effect on services such as funerals.
7.    There is no mention of sound attenuation for the surrounding community, particularly at night with footpath dining, when noise will carry throughout the quiet neighbourhood.
8.    There is not sufficient detail of the waste management provisions, critical for a restaurant of this size, located in a residential neighbourhood.
9.    There is no loading zone for the frequent deliveries, causing inevitable parking issues and disruption for neighbours and pedestrians.
10.  The proposal to remove 4 trees with the loss of habitat to wildlife and amenity to the neighbourhood is indefensible.

If you feel that this iconic building deserves to remain the well-loved community asset it currently is, please write a short submission quoting DA20211185 and make your views known to Council at by 24 September 2021.