House on hillside approved at Pretty Beach

A proposed new house and swimming pool at Pretty Beach was approved on Monday night at the Central Coast Council meeting.
The three storey home to be built on the vacant site attracted 10 public submissions the first time it went on public exhibition in May last year and 11 submissions during a second public notification period last September after minor changes were made.
The proposed maximum building height of 8.5 metres has been exceeded by nearly eight per cent at its highest point.
The council report said a sectional plan demonstrated the “insignificant” impact of the height variation.
The permissible front setback is 7.1 metres but this property wants a one metre setback for its carport structure – a variation of 86 per cent.
The permissible side setback is 1.4 metres based on the wall height of 6.5 metres and the variation sought is about 12 per cent for a three metre section of the wall.
The surrounding residential homes are stepped down the hillside with decks and balconies taking advantage of the views to Brisbane Water and Bouddi National Park.
The application for developing 48 High View St had been deferred to allow councillors to inspect the property after neighbours addressed a public forum complaining about its monolithic bulk, loss of views and its effect on their privacy.
The surrounding residential homes are stepped down the hillside with decks and balconies taking advantage of the views to Brisbane Water and Bouddi National Park.
The council report agreed that there would be some unavoidable privacy impacts due to the proposed development being sited higher up the slope but said the balustrade on the deck located on the eastern elevation was proposed to be constructed from non-transparent materials preventing the direct overlooking of four addresses in Venice St from a sitting position on the deck or standing in the living room.
Cr Sundstrom asked for the balcony to be 1.6 metres high to address the concerns of Ms Larissa Keogh who was one of three speakers who spoke at Monday’s public forum before the decision was taken.
The mover of the recommendation, Cr Rebecca Gale Collins would not accept Cr Sundstrom’s suggestion and he withdrew his request.
Ms Keogh said the proposal would have big impact on the surrounding properties and the minutia of life in her home would no longer be private.
“Why bother with a development control plan if it is allowed to be disregarded by council officers,” she asked.
Another neighbor Mr Alex Baitch said he was the 2014 National President of Engineers Australia and the profession’s code of ethics required engineers to use their knowledge and skills for the benefit of the community to create engineering solutions for a sustainable future.
“In doing so, we strive to serve the community ahead of other personal or sectional interests.”
He said he rigorously abided by this code. He spoke about impact of the proposed structure as a great monolith projecting into the middle of the valley and said height sticks used when the councillors visited did not reflect the development correctly.
“What is important is that interests of the whole community are considered and not just that of a single proponent,’’ he said.
While he always assumed a house would be built on the block, he never imagined one that would project into the valley some eight metres beyond a natural vista line, impacting residents further up High View Rd and in Venice Rd.
He had concept drawings prepared to show how to overcome some of the key objections.
The third speaker was planner Mr Matthew Wales, from Mathews Wales and Associates and president of Peninsula Chamber of Commerce, who was speaking on behalf of the proponents, the Simmons family.
He said they had been very patient.
He said his assessment of the application was that apart from two variations, the application complied with council guidelines.

Central Coast Council agenda 2.1, 26 Aug, 2019
Reporter: Merilyn Vale

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