To better understand the likely reasons why the DAC have approved the building proposed at the Cremorne Plaza site we need to understand it could have been as high as it is without it being 7 storeys.
A 5 storey therefore, indeed a 4 storey development (all of which I suggest would have been accepted publically even if only begrudgingly) could still have been proposed at the height of the approved development. This could be if each storey or at least the ground floor retail space had higher (even significantly higher) floor to ceiling heights.
Those arguing that the development should have been only 5 storeys therefore have, I would suggest, a tenuous argument at best. I say that firmly believing that they would not have an argument if the height remained the same but less storeys were provided.
What this development did do however was increase the height of the development from what the development plan understood a 5 storey development would be, justifying the public concerns. But a height that was not governed by the number of storeys but by the space available to it by the envelope defined in our development plan.
The height of development on this site was governed therefore by the depth of the development site. The plan stipulates a 30 degree slope from a height of 3.0 m on the boundary bordering the adjacent zone, remembering that council was overridden during the development plan amendment a year ago on its proposed 2.0 m starting height.
This site being significantly deeper than that envisaged by the plan has enabled a height greater than anticipated and this I believe is the real issue for not only the approval but the disquiet among the community. The block depth is 76 m, well in excess of the (from memory) 50-60 m the development plan was based on.
This depth has allowed for greater heights than that envisaged by the plan. With the height available and low floor to ceiling heights the developer was able to get more storeys than the plan stipulates.