The City of Ryde Council says the reason it rejected Harvey Norman’s Macquarie Park development plan was to preserve its vision for the precinct as a chiefly commercial area. In a media release issued this week, the Council confirmed the news first revealed by Appliance Retailer.

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City of Ryde Council has rejected rezoning proposals from Mirvac and Harvey Norman for major mix-used residential and retail developments in Macquarie Park as they are inconsistent with the vision for the business corridor as a specialist employment and economic precinct.

The failure to comply with the strategic direction for the Macquarie Park Corridor and the inappropriate built form and height of the constructions were seen as two key reasons behind Council’s decisions.

City of Ryde Acting General Manager, Roy Newsome, said: “Council is sending a strong message about its vision for this precinct and the impact that inappropriate and invasive development would have on the future of Macquarie Park and neighbouring residential suburbs.

“The Council has guided the vision for Macquarie Park for more than a decade and this approach has proved successful with the business precinct outperforming expectations as an economic and employment hub of national significance.”

A recent Price Waterhouse Cooper report identifies Macquarie Park business precinct as a ‘powerhouse of employment and economic growth’ where last year economic growth topped 6.8 percent, double the combined efforts of the CBDs of Sydney, North Sydney and Parramatta.

The Price Waterhouse Cooper report predicts that Macquarie Park will become NSW’s second largest economy and Australia’s ninth, in the next four to five years.

The original proposal for the new head office was prepared by architecture firm Allen Jack + Cottier and included a new 12-storey commercial tower atop the franchisor’s existing Domayne store at 31-35 Epping Road. A further two hectares of development incorporating 29-31 Epping Road and 111 Wicks Road would have included an adjacent 6-storey commercial building next to the Domayne, at the current site of a smash repairs business, a Stamford hotel and an apartment complex. Harvey Norman said this development would bring around 900 jobs to the area.