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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 9 Hansard (2 September) . . Page.. 2877 ..

4. The setback to the western boundary is shown on the approved plans as 4 metres. It has not changed by the approval to the drawings with Development Application # 943420 [M]. BEPCON have a survey report, and indicates that the 4 metre setback reduces in the south-western corner of the development and is 10mm under the precise approved measurement of 4 metres. This is quite within acceptable tolerances permitted under the Building Act.

The setback requirements in the Territory Plan are performance measures in the Residential Design and Siting Code for Multi Dwelling Developments, and as such, are not mandatory. The test of whether or not setbacks are regarded as adequate is whether or not they comply with the relevant objectives and performance criteria of the Code.

5. The particular walls in question have been difficult to identify positively as the building is on north-south axis. The question is addressed on the basis that it refers to the eastern wall at the northern end and the western wall at the north end of the development.

A recent Surveyors confirmation of floor and roof levels indicates the maximum height of the north elevation roof ridge is at RL 584.60 [approved plan showed RL of 585.20] which means the roof's ridge is 920mm lower than the original approved height.

The major change to the heights was achieved by an overall reduction in thickness of the floors height due in part to the lowering of the building, and the builder's change from corcon floor slabs (600mm deep) to conventional structural slabs of about 170mm thickness. This has resulted in the spandrel height of brickwork below roof level to increase from about 890mm to 1204mm. This has been approved by BEPCON as part of the structural amended plans for the floor slab changes which achieves the mandatory compliance of height.

6. The height of the walls shown on the approved plans measure 7.5.metres for the western wall, and 6.9.metres for the eastern wall.

7. PALM has made significant improvements to the pre-application and development appraisal processes, to provide a better guidance to applicants at early stages, and reduce the necessity for subsequent amendments.

The Land Act was amended in 1997 to impose a maximum time for dealing with applications of 6 months. This would reduce significantly the period involved in dealing with the application.

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