Car parking spaces in Tweed Shire have been a bit on the nose of late. Developers, Cabarita Beachside pty ltd, recently used the council’s request for the correct allocation of parking spaces to meet their Development Control Plans (DCP) as a trigger to terminate the contracts for 38 apartments that were bought off the plan in Cabarita Beach.
This left people who thought they were to receive the keys to their apartments in a matter of weeks suddenly facing the risk of being homeless, financially compromised and highly stressed. As a result the TSC, wedged between distressed residents and uncompromising developers, reversed their decision and allowed the DA.
The issue arose from the developers taking the total number of required parking spaces and allocating them to specific appartments that left some apartments with insufficient parking provision. Importantly the overall allocation included 1.5 parking spaces for some units under the DCP indicating some degree of flexibility in relation to the expectation of shared parking spaces.
The resolution suggested by the council was that the car parking be ‘noted on the strata plan as being Common Property. Car parking allocations could then be part of the Body-Corporate Strata By-Laws’ thus meeting the allocation requirements overall but not having particular parking places allocated to specific apartments. But this was rejected by the developers.
Insufficient parking allocation in developments can lead to increased parking on the surrounding streets negatively impacting local amenity, residents and businesses.
Mayor Chris Cherry (Independent) said it was important that developers couldn’t use a similar situation against council in the future and a ‘Review of Carparking Requirements for residential development’ and ‘to provide better clarity and remove any anomalies’ particularly in relation to strata titles was passed at yesterday’s TSC meeting. The motion addresses ‘the allocation of car parking spaces on a dwelling basis in accordance with Council’s DCP’.
‘I don’t know many people who drive half a car or park half a car,’ pointed out councillor Meredith Dennis (Independent).
Limiting draft consent conditions
The motion has also specified that ‘The General Manager or delegate cease the practice of providing draft conditions of consent to development applicants prior to the report being reviewed and finalised for determination’.
Prior to the new resolution, planning requirements that were missing in the draft conditions could result in developers failing to meet their obligations under their development applications.
‘What we have found is that junior staff have supplied draft conditions of consent and they have inadvertently missed conditions, especially in the DCP,’ explained TSC General Manager, Troy Green.
Therefore developers will no longer receive draft conditions of consent ‘until they have been reviewed by a senior member of staff’.