A FAMILY’S highly-valued views of Mount Canobolas could lead to the refusal of a six-unit development in a neighbouring vacant lot in Majestic Way.
Orange councillors unanimously agreed to defer a decision on the units to allow the developer more time to respond to concerns about the development’s impact, despite staff describing the site as overdeveloped and recommending its refusal, at Tuesday’s sustainable development committee (SDC) meeting.
In a submission to the council, neighbour David Driver objected to the units, saying his property’s uninterrupted views of Mount Canobolas were a key selling point when the family purchased their home.
Mr Driver told the meeting the proposal was excessive and unreasonable and was inconsistent with the family-orientated area.
“These issues aren’t going to go away. To allow six dwellings is consistent with over-development. I’m not asking council to do anything other than follow the DCP [development control plan],” he said.
In the development’s report, council staff agreed with Mr Driver’s concerns about how two of the units would block his views. Under the DCP Mount Canobolas is specifically mentioned as a “highly-valued” view that should not be substantially affected by the bulk and scale of new developments.
As well as failing to meet council requirements in sharing views, as it stands, the development also blocks sunlight to the private open space of the six units and the window of one unit, has an unreasonable impact on the visual amenity of the units’ occupants because of the excessive height of retaining walls, and will have a detrimental environmental impact on future residents of both the units and neighbouring properties, according to the report.
Despite the council’s concerns, the owner and developer of the site Nick Nagy feels the units meet the council’s guidelines.
“The figures we’ve provided meet council’s requirements. We’re still making changes to the DA [development application] and we’re in continual discussions with the council,” he said.
Mr Nagy said his representative would have the development’s shadow diagram double checked by an independent person because there was still room to get along with everyone.
A submission from another neighbour called for the developer to drop plans for two of the six units and settle on four, views echoed by Cr Neil Jones who said the dramatic slope of the block meant the developer should not expect to fit in as many units.
But Mr Nagy said the number of units met the council’s requirements for property density.
The development will go before council again after the applicant submits further view analysis, assessment of design levels and an independent assessment of shadow diagrams.