Town Planning Consultants in Melbourne
Back in 2014, the Victorian Government in consultation with local councils across the state, reformed the Residential Zoning system. New Zones were created and defined, leaving vast areas of our suburbs effectively “Rezoned” by these new definitions. Neighbour Residential Zone – where development is quite restricted, General Residential – where limited development is allowed and Residential Growth Zone – where development is less restricted. These Zones were amended again in March 2017 with minor but important changes that effect maximum heights, site coverage and building setbacks from boundaries to name a few.
Added to these zones councils apply “Schedules” to these zones which can have further implications to any proposed development by limiting maximum height, site coverage, boundary setbacks and permeability being the ones that affect our projects most often.
The councils also have applied “Planning Overlays” to these zones that also have requirements that need to be met by any development, the most well know of these is the “Heritage Overlay” but there are others like the “Design Development Overlay” and “Vegetation Protection Overlay” that can also impact what can be built on a specific site. The main issue with these overlays is that almost regardless of how well you meet the overlay criteria, a Town Planning Application will need to be prepared and lodged with council. This is a lengthy process and usually involves advertising to neighbours and dealing with Council.
The idea of these Zones, Schedules and overlays is to protect the integrity and character of the suburbs and control the type of development in the specific areas to ensure it is appropriate according to the councils. In broad terms this makes sense, for example people love the suburb of Canterbury and the price of land there reflects that, but a major part of the appeal is the large established trees and gardens. If everyone in that area ripped out all the trees and garden and built 3 storey Units with car parks out the front, the suburb would become less desirable and the character would be lost.
In most of our projects the planning controls have little or no impact, we are easily able to design beautiful homes that achieve all our clients wished for within the planning guidelines. However, in some instances the planning controls do have an impact and compromises need to be made or Town Planning Applications made to council for special permission.
Achieving the best possible outcome from a Town Planning Application is delicate process where experience, comprehensive knowledge of Town Planning Law and diplomacy are crucial.
Ravida has vast experience with planning applications in all their various forms and in many instances can handle the Town Planning Applications in house. Where things are more complicated, by a difficult neighbour or multiple Planning Controls we work collaboratively with the best town planning consultants in Melbourne. By using these town planning services and by collaborating with our clients in the approach to neighbours we ensure that the best planning outcome possible.
Connecting You with Helpful Town Planners in Melbourne
Ravida can connect you with town planning services for development projects in the highly desired eastern and south-eastern suburbs of Melbourne.
On September 1st 2016 the Building Act Legislation was amended to ensure that only the building owners can nominate which Building Surveyor is appointed to their project. This legislative change is to reinforce the understanding that while the building surveyor is paid for by the builder they are in fact working on behalf of the owner (our clients). The Building Surveyor is responsible for checking that the plans and engineering comply with all the multitude of regulations and standards that apply to the building project and issue a residential building permit.
The Building Surveyor then continues his involvement with the project and is responsible for ensuring that the home is constructed according to the plans he has assessed and approved. As part of the building permit services the Building Survyor will provide reports to both the owner and builder and is accountable to the owner and the legislation of the building act. When the home is completed and every detail has been checked the Building Surveyor will issue a “Certificate of Occupancy” and the home is ready for our clients to move in.
Permits for the house are not where it ends, very often other permits are required to complete your dream home, a large tree maybe where you wanted to put your swimming pool, the driveway crossover may be on the wrong side to capture north into your study, your might want your front fence higher than the 1.2m or 1.5m typically allowed. All these things will require a permit from the council and even though they are often outside the scope of Ravida’s Building Contract we don’t leave you hanging. Ravida will work with you to either assist you in applying for and successfully gaining a permit or in most instances make the application on your behalf.
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All these regulations, applications and permits form part of every building project we do and with over 30 years experience Ravida understands them intimately. They do vary from site to site, street to street, suburb to suburb but as part of our Design Development Process they are understood and addressed early. If needed we will seek advice from our contacts and consultants and use these town planning services to ensure the best outcome. If not, we will work with the nominated Building Surveyor to ensure your home is not just luxurious and beautiful but also meets all the standards, regulations and is fully compliant.