'I think there’s a conflict there': councillors vote to change rules on subdivisions

THE cost of building a driveway to a subdivided house could be passed to the homeowner after Orange City Council asked for changes to be made to its subdivision code.

Developer Geoff Kings addressed the council on Tuesday night on two battleaxe developments, one on McLachlan Street and the other on March Street where he was required to build three metre-wide driveways.

However, he said the timing to build the driveways before the second homes were built was impractical. 

“Our access handles are well and truly over the maximum code, they’re going to be eight metres and the maximum you need is six,” he said. 

“So to be building three-metre wide concrete driveways at the moment is impractical for where we’re heading.”

He said heavy equipment would travel over the driveway and asphalt alternatives were not cost effective because there was no asphalt facility in Orange.

“It would have to be dug up, which is going to have more impact on neighbours going forward,” he said. 

Council staff opposed the change, saying concrete driveways protected utilities and controlled construction material on the street. 

“Past experience has found that a battleaxe driveway will cater for construction traffic with no damage,” the report said. 

“Deferral of battleaxe driveway construction until development on the battleaxe lot would remove costs for developers and pass costs to home owners or builders.” 

However, Mr Kings said he owned the second lots and intended to develop them. 

Councillor Russell Turner moved to delete the condition and the driveway should be built before an occupation certificate was granted for the second lot.

He also moved to change the requirements in the council’s planning documents.

“This is not consistent with other similar infill developments, I think there’s a conflict there and it needs to be redressed,” he said. 

Cr Turner questioned the likelihood of the lots remaining undeveloped.

“Yes he possibly could, but why would a developer want to do that?” he said.