NBA superstar Andrew Bogut faces backlash from neighbours over $5million plans to rip out dozens of trees to make way for a three-storey Melbourne mansion complete with basketball court, 16-car garage and cinema room
- Andrew Bogut is planning to spend $5 million on his ‘dream home’ in Melbourne
- The NBA champion wants to remove 23 trees to make room for a mega mansion
- It will include a pool, sauna, massage room, rooftop terrace and summer house
- A local conservation society and some neighbours strongly oppose the property
- They say it is against planning overlays and believe it will be bad for the area
- Bogut said some trees had to be removed because they were a ‘fire hazard’
- He pledged to plant 50 trees, more than 5,500 plants and work with locals
NBA Champion Andrew Bogut (pictured), 35, has received backlash over the development of his ‘dream home’
Neighbours of NBA champion Andrew Bogut are furious at his plans to rip out dozens of trees to make way for his $5million mega-mansion.
The 35-year-old, who retired from the Sydney Kings in May, is seeking to build his new home on two blocks of land next to the beach in the affluent bayside suburb of Beaumaris in southeast Melbourne.
But some of Bogut’s neighbours and the Beaumaris Conservation Society have opposed the plans because they involve destroying a celebrated garden designed by the property’s former owner, Joan McCrae.
Bogut’s planning application, which was lodged last month, seeks approval for a three-storey mansion with a pool, half-sized basketball court, gym, sauna, massage room and rooftop terrace.
The mansion’s basement is set to include a home cinema, cellar and eight car stackers that fit 16 vehicles.
A summer house and games room are also part of the $5 million project.
The proposal seeks to remove a total of 23 tree species from the building site before introducing 5,600 plants and 73 canopy trees.
A concept image for Bogut’s proposed $5 million mansion on two blocks of land in Beaumaris in southeast Melbourne. The NBA champion has responded to criticism after receiving backlash over environmental concerns
‘A Jacaranda is the only tree to be removed that is considered to have moderate retention value. This tree will have a high construction impact, meaning that retention is not considered possible. All other trees to be removed are of low or very-low retention value,’ the application read.
‘Approximately 5,600 plants will be planted throughout the site. This includes 73 canopy trees with a mature height of greater than 5m. The plan also notes that 80 per cent of the trees and mid-storey/ground cover vegetation are to be indigenous.’
The Beaumaris Conservation Society (BCS) called on locals to oppose the plans last month, warning ‘this very special part of Beaumaris will be lost forever’.
They believe there is a ‘failure to meet a large number of prescribed requirements’ outlined by local planning overlays.
Bogut’s mansion ‘would not retain an inconspicuous profile, and would present visually dominant elevations’, according to the society.
Bogut’s planning application reveals he wants to build a three-storey mansion with a pool, half-sized basketball court, gym, sauna, massage room and rooftop terrace
‘The large basement would not provide enough space for the root zones for large existing canopy trees or proposed canopy trees,’ the call to action read.
Removing native or indigenous trees also goes against the Vegetation Protection Overlay, according to the society.
BCS also raised concerns about the property being built on a public easement, the 16-car garage causing traffic in the suburban street and the removal of soul.
Two people have also commented on the property plans on website Planning Alerts.
‘As this is in a Vegetation Protection Overlay zone I strongly object to the removal or destruction or lopping of ANY native vegetation. This area is of extreme vegetation significance,’ one woman wrote.
Meanwhile, another woman supported the ‘wonderful’ property – although she requested some changes be made.
‘Please make adjustments to plan to allow for site permeability and the replanting of native plants in keeping with the point ave precinct,’ she wrote.
‘Everything else about the house is wonderful. It’s not alucobond or townhouses or apartments so people just need to chill.’
The former NBA star’s new home will be built across two adjoining blocks of land and include a summer house (pictured is the current site of Bogut’s property)
Bogut (centre) celebrates with Draymond Green and David Lee after winning the NBA Championship in 2015
Bogut publicly responded with a statement posted to Twitter last month defending plans for his ‘dream home’.
He said claiming the trees that will be removed were ‘considered a fire hazard’ when he bought the property.
‘Our property would be 70 per cent open space and gardens/greenery. We are comfortable in saying no other property in the area would be near that radio,’ he wrote.
‘Our landscape architect has proposed a design with over 5,500 plants, 80 per cent of which are indigenous in line with the direction of Bayside City Council. This includes more than 50 new canopy trees, focusing on specific coastal and indigenous species.
‘Whilst concern for new building is understood, if the full submission is reviewed, including the landscape plan, you would see that the design response is seeking to make a positive contribution to the local character.’
The basketballer also defended plans for a proposed fence around the property because ‘we would like some privacy’.
‘We have two young children under four and I have made a concerted effort my whole career to give them a childhood outside of the spotlight of a professional athlete,’ he said.
‘I will continue to try and do this moving forward.’
Born in Melbourne, Bogut was the NBA’s number one draft pick in 2005 and spent more than a decade in the US league with stints at the Milwaukee Bucks, Cleveland Cavaliers, Dallas Mavericks, Golden State Warriors and LA Lakers.
His NBA career included a championship with Golden State in 2015.
He returned to Australia in 2018 following the death of his grandfather and has spent the last seasons with the Sydney Kings.
Bogut was instrumental for the Australian Boomers when they beat a star-studded US side for the first time in 55 years in an exhibition match in Melbourne last August.
Bogut led the Sydney Kings to a minor premiership in 2019-20 before the team pulled out due to coronavirus fears midway through the grand final series in March, which was awarded to the Perth Wildcats.
He now runs a basketball academy in Carrum Downs in Melbourne’s southeast.