Blue Mountains News

Mayor Rejects New Housing Code for Blue Mountains

Source: Blue Mountains City Council
Posted: 26 Jun 2020
Blue Mountains Mayor Mark Greenhill has sounded the alarm as the NSW Government announces it will force its Low Rise Medium Density Housing Code onto councils across NSW, including the Blue Mountains.

Blue Mountains City Council has opposed the Low Rise Medium Density Housing Code since its proposed introduction in April 2018, and been unable to achieve an exemption to the new code in that time.

Mayor Greenhill said: “This code allows the density of dual occupancies and medium density housing to increase dramatically. The code removes the community voice from the process and delivers on the State Government’s agenda to increase development in Sydney.

“Applied in the context of the Blue Mountains, this could amount to overdevelopment across the whole region.

“We have fought hard to keep such a proposition out of the Blue Mountains and have been seeking an exemption from the code for more than two years.

“For more than two years the State Government has been refusing to approve that exemption and now the Minister says he is going to force this code on local government areas.”

The code poses an unacceptable risk to the environmental values of the Blue Mountains World Heritage Area as it allows for a substantial intensification of residential development, resulting in significant increases to storm water run-off into the fragile environment.

The Code will erode the built character elements that define our towns and villages, and is at odds with the local Character and Place Guideline released by the State Government in February 2019.

“Our experts tell us that this code will negatively impact the Blue Mountains,” Mayor Greenhill said.

“This move will undermine our environment, diminish our quality of life and turn the Blue Mountains into just another overdeveloped part of Sydney.

“Not only all of this, but very worryingly, the code would turn on the tap for more development and cram more people into our bush fire prone city and this is just madness. Such a move places people at risk and makes the work of our emergency services even harder and more complex.

“When you couple this Low Rise Medium Density Code with the State Government’s plans for bringing 30 metre trucks onto the Blue Mountains highway in great numbers and its support of the 24/7 airport at the foot of the Blue Mountains, you can see they do not intend for us to escape their development agenda for Sydney.

“The government must recognise that one size does not fit all and the Blue Mountains, as a City within a World Heritage Area, should be exempt from this code.”

Mayor Mark Greenhill
 
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