What is the point of having planning controls?
Central Coast Council has approved another multi-dwelling project on the Peninsula, even though non-compliant with the standards of our development controls ("Five town houses approved under delegation", PN481, 28/10/19).
What is the point of having development controls, if Council is repeatedly going to decide that the controls are not relevant, whenever it suits?
To put it another way, if so many developments are satisfactory, despite not being in compliance, how can the standards be correct and when can we see a set of standards that are meaningful and sustainable?
As it is, nobody can know what Council will approve of, and this applies to individual applicants (developers seem to be in a class of their own) and to residents who are affected by developments.
How can any development with a floor space ratio of 5:1 be justified in Ettalong: these are central-city development densities and far in excess of anything contemplated in the present regulations?
As for the justification given, this is just boiler-plate verbiage that can be churned out by the yard by anybody who has absorbed the jargon: in fact, it could almost be composed by a random-word generator without any reference to the actual development that is being described.
The tip-off here is that the text has obviously been pasted in from the West/Morris Sts development application by a junior on the staff and hasn't even been proof-read by the people supposedly responsible.
If this indicates the level of scrutiny that these texts receive from Council staff, it is little wonder that many residents feel deeply sceptical of our development-control management.
No realistic person is against increasing development densities, but nobody can be happy with the present chaotic system that leaves everybody suspicious and unsatisfied, and lowers trust in the Council to even greater depths than before.
Our former mayor, Cr Jane Smith, once sagely announced that the development of the Peninsula required "thinking about".
There was no evidence that this happened during her term and little indication that it is going to happen in the term of the current mayor, Cr Lisa Matthews.
Email, 5 Nov 2019
Bruce Hyland, Woy Woy.