Expect no sunlight for two months a year
Peninsula residents living in medium density zones should expect that future developments to their north may mean they have no sunlight into their homes for two months of the year.
That is the import of a Local Planning Panel decision last week to approve a development in South St, Umina, which overshadows its southern neighbour.
In making its decision, the Panel acknowledged "the overshadowing impacts that result from the application of applicable planning controls to this site".
It stated that this could be expected "for future development under the applicable planning provisions".
In approving the application, it stated there would be "no unreasonable environmental amenity impacts".
About one half of the residential area of the Peninsula is zoned R1 for medium density development.
Under State law, there does not appear to be any avenue of appeal against the merits of the Planning Panel decision.
The shadow diagram below prepared for Peninsula News shows the effect of the profile approved by the Panel on a neighbouring single-storey home with a side setback of 3.5 metres, complying with the planning provisions in force before August.
It shows the angle of sunlight when the sun is at its highest and that an overshadowed north-facing window would not receive any sunlight between May 21 and July 21 each year.
As the sun rises or sets, the shadowing is naturally greater.
This means that for another two months of the year the sun may only shine into the home for short periods of the day.
Houses built to the narrower setbacks in new planning provisions in force from August 1 may have no sunlight for up to four months of the year.
The Local Planning Panel was considering an application for a $3.2 million five-unit two-storey residential flat at 42 South St, Umina, with basement car parking for nine cars.
The council had received a total of 61 submissions, 28 in the first notification period and 33 submissions in the second.
The ground floor would have one three-bedroom unit and two two-bedroom units and the first floor would have two three-bedroom units.
The proposal was non-compliant with planning provisions in a number of respects.
Its floor space ratio exceeded development standard by five per cent.
It did not meet the solar access requirements for new and existing dwellings for a minimum of three hours/day sunlight in living, dining, family rooms and in half of principal open space areas, or a minimum of three hours/day sunlight to be retained to existing neighbours.
Deep soil setbacks did not meet requirements by up to 33 per cent at the front and did not exist at all in places on the southern boundary.
Exterior wall setbacks were up to half those required on the southern side, up to 60 per cent on the northern side and up to only two thirds the requirement on front boundary.
The basement intruded into the deep soil area, which was not permitted by the planning provisions.
The maximum dimension of the building at 40.59 metres was 16 per cent greater than allowed.
A required nine metre separation distance to adjacent dwellings was also not provided.
In approving the development, the Panel stated it "considers that the proposed development will be in the public interest because it is consistent with the objectives of the development standard and the objectives for development within the R1 zone".
"The proposal is satisfactory having regard for the relevant environmental planning instruments, plans and policies.
"The breach of the floor space ratio development standard is acceptable in the circumstances of the case.
"There are no detrimental environmental impacts that would occur as a consequence of the development when considered under section 4.15 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979, subject to the conditions of consent as modified."
The Panel's decision was unanimous.
Local Planning Panel agenda 3.2, 25 Aug 2022
DA6078/2021, Central Coast Council