13.13.3 Private and Public Open Space

closeddate_range22 Dec, 2020, 9:00am - 12 Mar, 2021, 5:00pm
13.13.3 Private and Public Open Space

Private open space can be provided in the form of rear gardens or patios for ground floor units, and balconies at upper levels. Private amenity space should be located to optimise solar orientation and designed to minimise overshadowing and overlooking.

Balconies should adjoin and have a functional relationship with the main living areas of the apartment. In certain circumstances, glass-screened ‘winter gardens’ may be provided. It is important that in the latter case adequate semi-private or communal open space, in the form of landscaped areas, should also be provided. Roof gardens offer only limited potential in this regard, due to climatic and safety factors, and should not form the major share of such space.  Roof gardens will only be considered provided they are easily accessible, secure and attractively landscaped.  Private open space at ground floor level should receive some sunlight, but where provided at ground level, private amenity space shall incorporate boundary treatment appropriate to ensure privacy and security.

The following Private Amenity Space requirements apply:

Table 13.2: Private Amenity Space Requirements for Apartments

Apartment Type

               

Minimum Private amenity Space

Studio

4 sq. m

One bedroom

5 sq. m

Two bedrooms (3 person)

6 sq. m

Two bedrooms (4 person)

7 sq. m

Three bedrooms

9 sq. m

Balconies (or glass-screened “winter gardens”) need to be of a certain minimum width to be useful from an amenity viewpoint, being able to accommodate chairs and a small table.   A minimum width of 1.5 metres for one-bedroom units.  While deeper balconies might be desirable in certain cases, this has to be balanced against the need to avoid overshadowing. It is preferable that balconies would be primarily accessed from living rooms, although larger apartments may include wrap around and/or secondary balconies, which should also include screened clothes drying space.

Table 13.3 Minimum Floor Areas for Communal Open Space (per Apartment)

Studio

4 sq. m

One bedroom

5 sq. m

Two bedrooms (3 person)

6 sq. m

Two bedrooms (4 person)

7 sq. m

Three bedrooms

9 sq. m

The recreational needs of children must be considered as part of communal amenity space within apartment schemes. As possible, their safety needs to be taken into consideration and protected throughout the entire site, particularly in terms of safe access to larger communal play spaces. Children’s play needs around the apartment building should be catered for:

  1. within the private open space associated with individual apartments (see table above);
  2. within small play spaces (about 85 – 100 sq. metres) for the specific needs of toddlers and children up to the age of six, with suitable play equipment, seating for parents/guardians, and within sight of the apartment building, in a scheme that includes 25 or more units with two or more bedrooms; and
  3. within play areas (200–400 sq. metres) for older children and young teenagers, in a scheme that includes 100 or more apartments with two or more bedrooms.

Site conditions, such as elevations facing north or overlooking busy streets, or tall buildings, may diminish the amenity value of balconies.  Balconies may not be appropriate in historic areas. In such cases, it will be the designer’s responsibility to provide some form of compensating amenity for the occupants. This might take the form, for instance, of above-average sized living rooms and generous landscaped communal open spaces.

Balustrading to balconies should be safe for children. Vertical privacy screens should generally be provided between adjoining balconies.

These are minimum standards and the Council will encourage developers to provide for greater than the minimum.

 

  

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