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Planning Proposal for the St Leonards Over-Rail Plaza

This consultation is now closed.

Consultation ran from 8 July to 18 August 2020.

UPDATE: St Leonards Over-Rail Plaza Local Environmental Plan (LEP) amendment Finalised

The Amendment of the Lane Cove LEP to accommodate the St Leonards Over-Rail Plaza was finalised on 19 February 2021 and has taken immediate effect.

This amendment allows the Over-Rail Plaza project proposed for St Leonards to proceed to a more detailed design phase.

Consultation Overview

Council has consulted with the community on an amendment to the Lane Cove Local Environmental Plan to permit development of a public plaza above the North Shore train line on the south side of the Pacific Highway, St Leonards.

The St Leonards Strategy, adopted by Council in December 2006, established a public domain vision for the St Leonards Commercial Core precinct that would create an identifiable ‘sense of place’. This included the development of a new community focal point for St Leonards, a new Bus Rail Interchange and Plaza to be constructed over the rail corridor. The Plaza  is to be funded by Council from funds received from Voluntary Planning Agreements from four​ projects surrounding the space. The owners of these properties produced a video​​ in 2014 ​​which provides a visual interpretation of the space.

The proposed LEP amendments seek to amend Schedule 1 of the Lane Cove Local Environmental Plan 2009 to permit development of a public plaza over the railway line. The Planning Proposal is considered to be a housekeeping amendment as it will enable the delivery of open space infrastructure by Council.

This consultation is in accordance with the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 & Regulation 2000 and the Local Government Act 1993. The Minister has delegated authority of this proposal to Council as the local plan-making authority.


The Over Rail Plaza is situated on the southern side of the Pacific Highway across from the St Leonards Railway Station. A portion of this public plaza (2,700 sqm) comprises the airspace above the North Shore Railway Line, between Canberra Avenue and Lithgow Street, and will connect to other portions already under construction.

This proposal does not address the design of the Plaza, which will be determined at a later stage, and only deals with the permissibility of using the airspace above the rail line.

The Over-Rail plaza, when designed, will provide more open space and high accessibility to the surrounding environment.  

Further information is available for viewing under Key Documents below.   

Key Documents 

Council originally proposed the idea of using the area above the railway corridor between Lithgow Street and Canberra Avenue for open space and community purposes in 2011. Since then, a significant body of work has been undertaken to realise the initial vision for the site including on-going engagement with local and state governments, and state and Ministerial agencies, in the preparation of the design and delivery of the development.  

Council has continued to gauge support for the project which requires the collaboration of local and state government stakeholders to progress the concept and identify delivery opportunities. 

The Plaza is also identified within the St Leonards and Crows Nest Draft Green Plan, prepared by the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment (the then Department of Planning and Environment) as part of the St Leonards and Crows Nest 2036 Plan in October 2018.  

The recent and ongoing transition of St Leonards with additional floor area for mixed use multi-story developments will continue to drive the need for additional publicly accessible open space. 

In 2019 Council received confirmation of the Planning Pathway for the delivery of the St Leonards Plaza project consistent with the requirements of both Transport for NSW and Council. 

St Leonards Proposed Over Rail Rezoneing Area Overlay Draft 07072020 (002).jpg
 For further queries please contact Lara Fusco, Strategic Planner (02) 9911 3627