Protect the Country Living character of the Adelaide Hills Council

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We call upon the SA State Government to ensure that the Median Rule Land Division Tool applicable to the Country Living zone in the existing Adelaide Hills Council Development Plan, is incorporated into the new Planning and Design Code (P&D Code) to avoid excessive subdivision. The code is due for implementation in September 2020.

Under the existing planning rules in Council’s Development Plan, properties in the Country Living zone (incorporating parts of Crafers, Crafers West, Stirling, Heathfield, Upper Sturt, and Aldgate) of the Adelaide Hills Council district are allowed to subdivide according to rules laid out in the Median Rule Land Division Tool. Currently, this tool limits subdivisions to no smaller than the median size of neighbouring properties within a 200 m radius of the property, or to 2,000 sqm (approx. ½ acres), whichever is the greatest. The State Government has removed the Median Rule Land Division Tool from the new P&D Code.

Losing the Median Rule Land Division Tool under the new code and using the blunt instrument of a minimum allotment size of 2,000 sqm (approx. ½ acres) means that 367 allotments could be subdivided in the Country Living zone. Some could subdivide into multiple allotments, e.g. an existing 35,000 sqm (approx. 8½ acres) allotment could subdivide into 14 new allotments. This could lead to an erosion of the renowned leafy and characterful neighbourhoods in our part of the Hills.

This is a mammoth change with huge repercussions for the character and amenity of our area that we believe is an unintended consequence of the new code. The current changes do not present like for like policy transition.

It also poses a serious threat to native vegetation, regulated and sometimes centuries old significant trees as a result of exemptions that allow removal of any trees within 20 m of a dwelling in a bushfire hazard area. It could devastate local biodiversity.

We have already seen the consequence of State Government imposed changes to zoning rules in Mt Barker. We want to ensure that rampant development does not affect our part of the Hills as an unintended consequence of State Government imposed changes.

Adelaide Hills Council has resolved a similar position. For a summary see here:

The public consultation by the State Government (DPTI) is now closed but this petition will be kept open for signatures until the Median Rule Land Division Tool has been incorporated into the P&D Code.

This petition has been created by Cr Kirrilee Boyd and Cr Leith Mudge of the Adelaide Hills Council, but is done in our capacity as private citizens and local residents and not on behalf of the Council. Council is making its own submission to the Government. The opinions expressed in the creation of this petition are those of the creators and are not necessarily the policy or position of the Adelaide Hills Council.