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The size and scale of an apartment development planned for one of the last remaining vacant blocks in a Port Macquarie estate has the surrounding residents up in arms.
The $10.2 million proposal seeks approval for a two and three storey building with 18 apartments, basement parking and strata subdivision at 60 and 62 The Anchorage. The Anchorage JV Pty Ltd is the applicant.
Port Macquarie-Hastings Council received 184 submissions following the exhibition of the development application on two occasions.
The development application is recommended for consent, subject to conditions, in a report to go before the council's Development Assessment Panel on Wednesday, November 16.
The report said the site is considered suitable for the proposed development.
The surrounding residents are concerned. Neighbouring resident Joe Newton said the area consisted of houses and townhouses.
"The primary problem is the bulk, scale and density [of the proposal] is out of character with the area," he said.
Mr Newton also raised concerns about privacy, the proposed development's height, the associated traffic and the potential impact of acid sulfate soils, given the excavation needed for the basement car park.
Neighbouring residents Nick and Danielle Senior always knew the vacant land would be developed but the size and scale of the proposal came as a shock.
Mr Senior said a driveway planned alongside their boundary fence was a big concern.
The proposed basement parking has single vehicle access off The Anchorage.
Mr Senior said development had to be compatible with its surroundings and neighbouring homes.
"I think this doesn't meet that criteria on a number of counts," he said.
Nearby resident Mel Wass said this was not a "not in my backyard" issue but about the appropriateness of the planned development.
She said there was no development in the precinct of the size and bulk of the proposal.
Ms Wass' concerns include the increased level of noise during construction and beyond, if the development goes ahead.
"It's a very quiet area and most people have moved here for the peace and quiet and the amenity of the area," she said.
The Development Assessment Panel will consider the development application on Wednesday, November 16. The meeting starts at 2pm.
The council report said the application had been amended through the assessment process to address initial concerns from council staff and the submissions.
Key amendments include a reduction in building height and floor space ratio, deletion of one second floor apartment, increased setbacks and building separation, improved privacy screening, improvements to flood protection and landscaping.
"The site is considered suitable for the proposed development and the proposal adequately addresses relevant planning controls," the report said.
The proposal seeks a variation to the height of building development standard for the two and three storey building components.
The application was referred to the Development Assessment Panel because three or more objections were received.
An amended statement of environmental effects, prepared by Land Dynamics Australia for the applicant, said the proposal considers the residential amenity of the existing and future residents with respect to the adjoining residential properties and the site constraints.
"The proposal would be of a scale that is in keeping with the surrounding built environment of the area and provides a gradual transition to adjoining building heights," the document said.
The statement of environmental effects said every effort has been made to minimise potential impacts of the proposed development.
The site is bounded by houses and the Hastings River.
The document said the development's aim is to provide high quality units with generous living areas, highly sought after expansive views and landscaping which screens the adjoining dwellings and provides an attractive appearance.
The development proposes a mix of three and four bedroom apartments. Plans show the basement car park includes parking for 44 residential and six visitor spaces, 10 bicycle slots and three motorcycle spaces.
The site is mapped as potentially containing class three acid sulfate soils. The basement car park and storage area will involve excavation extending more than one metre below the natural surface level.
An Acid Sulfate Soil Management Plan, prepared by Douglas Partners, has been submitted with the application.
Consent conditions have been recommended requiring implementation of the plan at the relevant stages of the development.
A traffic report concluded the proposed development's traffic generation will not present any adverse traffic implications, proposed parking will be adequate and appropriate, and the proposed access, internal circulation and servicing arrangements will be suitable and appropriate.
A noise assessment also forms part of the suite of development application documents.
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