Saturday, February 25, 2017

25 February 2017

It should have been a straightforward knock-down rebuild. DA201629546, authorising the demolition of the existing dwelling and the construction of a two-storey house, was approved by the government on 19 July 2016.  That should have meant that the building complied with the planning rules, but it wasn’t long before the neighbours realised something was wrong.
The southern boundary wall looked to be far too high (Fig 1).  The height of the wall should not exceed 2.6 m to allow reasonable solar access, the approved plan indicates a height of 3.4 m (see Figure 2) and in fact what has been built is about 4.3m high. The neighbour’s solar access has been severely compromised.
But there was more. On further examination, we found that the 50% mandatory plot ratio rule appears to have been significantly exceeded.  The awnings at the front of the building exceed the building line by more than the permitted 60 cm; the rear set-back of a cabana should have been 3 m but is only 1.6 m and the prescribed building envelope on the northern side of the building is penetrated by over 1.0m.

Questions for government?
How and why was the original plan approved?
The building being constructed deviates significantly from the approved plans – how was this allowed to happen?
What is the government going to do ensure the building complies with the planning rules?
Are any penalties to be applied for non-compliance?
What steps are going to be taken to ensure that a similar situation does not occur on another site?

We await a response.