Courts can order changes to buildings
THERE were established precedents where developers who failed to comply with their approvals were required to remove an entire floor of the project, according to Local Government Association of Queensland CEO Greg Hallam.
He said the response to the controversial Breeze development in Mooloolaba was in the hands of Sunshine Coast Council.
If it chose to proceed to prosecution, Mr Hallam said the Planning Court had shown previously in two incidences on the Gold Coast that it was not reluctant to require rectification to the conditions of the approved development application.
Mr Hallam said the court had a wide range of powers it could use at its discretion.
The Sunshine Coast Daily revealed last week the 57-unit Breeze development had been built outside the conditions of its 2014 approval.
Plans for councillors to consider officers' reports into the matter at council's September 15 general council meeting may be delayed until next week due to illness affecting planning portfolio chair Cr Christian Dickson.
The council did on August 12 okay some minor ground floor changes to the Breeze approval but rejected others it considered negated the promised design outcome.
The developer made a fresh application for the structure on September 1, with council officers noting the original application with the Planning Scheme requirements relating to bulk, scale and setbacks was marginal and only supported on the basis of the design outcomes.
They said the approval granted was at the upper limits of the planning officer's discretion.
"It is considered that the proposed changes relating to the kitchen expansion into the balcony area and other changes to the building facade (balustrades) are not supportable,'' the officer's response said about the second attempt to gain retrospective approval.
If an approval was granted council planners say only the ground and top floor units of the 57 in the complex would comply with the planning scheme's private open space requirements.
Mr Hallam said issues relating to the private certifier's initial signing off on the completed building were matters for state licensing authorities to consider.
According to the council, the private certifier subsequently "amended their approval to remove the additional building elements that were not approved by council".