MARIBYRNONG councillors have slammed a "cheeky" proposal for a 31-storey tower on the Joseph Road precinct site in Footscray.
The $318 million project by Sailing Free Investments proposes five mixed use buildings from 15 to 31 storeys featuring 968 apartments and spread across Hopkins, Whitehall and Moreland streets.
It's just over a year since Planning Minister Matthew Guy approved a $90 million, 25-storey tower in the precinct.
Cr Sarah Carter accused the state government of cheek, gall and audacity and said it was trying to take advantage of council's good nature by expecting council support.
"We said we would accept 25 storeys and they have gone and asked us for 31," she said.
The 9500-square-metre project would include a 1500-square-metre supermarket, three showrooms, 18 ground floor retail stores and 1030 parking spots
The proposed height would stop sunlight reaching the playground of nearby St Monica's Primary School.
A government spokeswoman said a planning permit application had been received in April for mixed use development including residential, retail and other commercial and community uses that "could deliver significant benefits for the wider area".
"The council and the Department of Planning are currently working through a range of matters, including building height," the spokeswoman said.
The council would support the development provided the two buildings fronting Warde Street are reduced to 25 storeys, the supermarket is raised from the basement to ground level and a better mix of activities is encouraged.
It has warned the site must be remediated from its current contaminated state. The application is being reviewed by the Department of Planning before a final decision by the planning minister.
Mr Guy has revealed that $1.6 million will be provided to transform the former Joseph Road branch line railway into public open space.
"This provision of open space is part of the ongoing commitment to work with each Central Activities Area council to secure their future and create an attractive environment for private- sector investment," Mr Guy said.