More tweaks proposed for Northbourne planning rules

Ian Bushnell 24 July 2019 2

Northbourne Avenue intersection. File image.

Further changes to the planning rules for development along the northern entry to Canberra have been proposed to address issues that have arisen since the conclusion of the joint City and Gateway project between the ACT Government and the National Capital Authority.

Amendment 91 to the National Capital Plan, which paved the way for high-rise development along Northbourne Avenue, became law on 4 April but the NCA now says it has identified a handful of issues that need to be clarified.

The NCA says the timing and passage of Amendment 91 was intended to ensure that all relevant development applications submitted to ACTPLA before its commencement were processed before 4 April.

However, Draft Amendment 93, released for public consultation, introduces transitional provisions to address development applications submitted to the ACT planning authority before Amendment 91. The amendment clarifies the term ‘building length’ as it relates to building separation requirements, and clarifies design provisions concerning balconies and balustrades.

DA93 clarifies that development applications submitted to ACTPLA before 4 April will be assessed under the previous planning rules.

Under the new planning rules the length of buildings is limited to a maximum of 55 metres, but the NCA says that there is now uncertainty about this where a building consists of multiple elements above ground level that are connected below by a basement.

The changes proposed clarify that application of the maximum length does not apply to basements, and that longer buildings may be permitted at lower building levels where there are strong design justifications, such as continuous, active street frontages.

Longer buildings may also be permitted at the key intersection of Northbourne Avenue with Macarthur/Wakefield Avenues.

The third proposed change clarifies the heights at which particular forms of balustrade may be constructed, and provides a common point of measurement for these heights.

The City and Gateway project resulted in a planning and design framework to guide urban development in the city centre and along the gateway corridor for the next 25 to 30 years.

The NCA says it provides for greater density, higher quality and more sustainable living and working environments within a landscape setting, appropriate to the National Capital.

Submissions to DA93 close on Wednesday 4 September 2019.


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2 Responses to More tweaks proposed for Northbourne planning rules
Dicko Thomas Dicko Thomas 9:26 pm 25 Jul 19

High density along the light rail route is the only way to make it viable economically.

Helen Weldon Helen Weldon 2:58 pm 25 Jul 19

“A handful of issues”? Seriously? LMFO

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