Your views on Torquay's Town Centre

At a Council meeting on Tuesday 22 August 2017, Council resolved to exhibit a set of draft documents relating to the Torquay Town Centre Project.

Thanks to all those who provided feedback on these draft documents.The submission period has now closed, but the documents can still be viewed below:

Project Overview

The project is focused on achieving the following outcomes:

  • The Torquay Town Centre is the primary activity centre for the Surf Coast Shire and must provide the services, facilities and employment needs of the growing population
  • The beach and relaxed lifestyle experience offered by Torquay are critical assets both economically and socially that must be protected and maximised
  • Whilst tourism continues to be an important role for the town centre, its role as the ‘heart’ of the Torquay community will be of the utmost importance.

It is a long term plan to be realised over a period of 20 years.

Key Recommendations

Some of the major actions recommended in the Draft Urban Design Framework include:

  • Reorienting the focus of the town centre towards the foreshore rather than towards the Surf Coast Highway.
  • Modifying traffic movements around the town centre to create a more pedestrian friendly environment, including configuring Gilbert Street as “one way” with the direction of travel from west to east (ie. towards the foreshore) and installing traffic lights at the intersection of Bristol Road and the Surf Coast Highway.
  • Creation of a town square in Cliff Street and streetscape upgrades to the existing laneway between Gilbert Street and Bristol Road (alongside the Torquay Pharmacy).
  • Preparation of plans for streetscape beautification works on Gilbert Street, and additional landscape planting throughout the town centre.
  • A number of new pedestrian crossings throughout the town centre and over The Esplanade to the foreshore.
  • Encouraging basement parking or rear parking as part of new development proposals.
  • Formalising or reconfiguring areas of public parking along Zeally Bay Road, Gilbert Street and The Esplanade to increase capacity.
  • Establishing a Design Review Panel to consider new development applications in the town centre.
  • Creating a ‘Town Centre Design Guide’ to identify a palette of preferred materials and finishes, vegetation, street furniture, etc.
  • Facilitating small business opportunities and medium density housing on the north side of Bristol Road in the vicinity of Torquay Village (this would change previous policy which recommended rezoning this area to Commercial 1 to a point much further west towards the Surf Coast Highway).
  • Expanding the commercial extent of the town centre through the rezoning of land north of Anderson Street, west of Pearl Street and east of The Esplanade.
  • Identifying land east of Pearl Street for long term commercial expansion. Not supporting further residential subdivision in this area.
  • Introducing new building height and setback requirements throughout the town centre, ranging from 2 storey in Gilbert Street, 3 and 4 storey in most of the centre and up to 5 storeys in specific areas where impacts on view lines can be minimised.

Project Background

This project seeks to manage future development of our coastal town centre, providing guidance on matters such as:

  • Streetscape improvements – new tree plantings, footpath design, street furniture
  • Private development – building heights, setbacks, materials etc
  • Promoting investment and job creation
  • Traffic access
  • Ways to connect the town centre with public spaces and other business precincts

A survey, walking tour, drop in sessions and workshops were undertaken between January - April 2017 to gain community and stakeholder input into the development of draft plans.

Your submission

Thanks for your feedback - the submission period has now closed.

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You are welcome to provide feedback on any or all of the recommendations is these reports, or make any other comments relating to the project. You might like to consider some of the following topics: built form, town character, land use and activity, landscape and environment, access and movement, car parking.

If you'd rather upload your submission, you can do that here

Would you like to present to Council relating to your submission at the Hearing of Submissions Committee?

If yes, you will be contacted regarding the time/date for this meeting

The survey form is now closed. Thanks for your contributions.

If you prefer you can send your submission by mail (you must include your name and contact details):

Torquay Town Centre Project,

C/- Sally Conway, Project Manager,

Surf Coast Shire Council,

PO Box 350, Torquay VIC 3228

Or you can email us at (don't forget your name and contact details)

Your personal information is collected by Council to contact you about your submission or advise you of future meetings. If you do not provide your name and email and/or postal address, Council will not be able to consider your submission. Your personal information will not be published online but submissions will be available to the public.