Page 1676 - Week 06 - Wednesday, 8 May 2013
with the rules of the single dwelling code. Blocks that do not comply with the compliance tables are required to be identified in the precinct code to alert prospective purchasers that the block has limited development potential, particularly if a two-storey building is proposed.
Variation 306 contains a significant number of changes, both minor and major. One of the most important changes is the solar fence provision. This adjusts the current building envelope requirements to better protect the solar amenity of neighbouring blocks. The current single dwelling and multi-unit codes already contain building envelope provisions that control the bulk and scale of the development as well as reducing overshadowing. These were introduced in the territory plan with variation 200, the garden city variation, in 2003.
The building envelope and solar access provisions in variation 306 further refine the existing building envelope to enable more development in the rear zone whilst affording better protection to southern neighbours. They were developed as part of the sustainable futures program that included a review of planning policy to identify proposed changes to complement the government’s sustainability initiatives.
The territory plan solar access review identified possible changes to the territory plan to ensure better solar access at the subdivision and development stages. Maintaining acceptable block yields and ensuring housing affordability were key considerations during this review. There was also the context of a review of current solar access policies in the ACT. The application of sound planning principles to new subdivisions ensures that every block has the potential for good solar access, while protecting solar access of their neighbours. The development of the solar access provisions was not a policy on the run, as has been asserted by some. Suitable research was undertaken.
Madam Speaker, I ask leave to continue my comments at a later point. I am having a bit of difficulty at the moment.
MR GENTLEMAN (Brindabella) (10.20): If this motion to reject variation 306 is carried, many worthy initiatives will be shelved. I will focus on some of the key initiatives and why there should be no further delay in their adoption.
The community strongly supports the introduction of secondary residences. “Secondary residences” are a new form of residential development replacing the current “relocatable units” and “habitable suites”. A secondary residence can only be associated with an existing single dwelling. It is restricted to a gross floor area of 75 square metres, to blocks over 500 square metres, cannot be further subdivided and must be adaptable.
There is no restriction on the type of occupant of a secondary residence. A resident does not need to be a relative of the residents of the principal dwelling, nor does the resident need to be under any particular type of care. Based on the number of inquiries received by the Environment and Sustainable Development Directorate, a significant number of development applications for secondary residences are ready to be lodged when variation 306 commences.