Kensington Public School may one day see a 21 meter high building robbing it of winter sun along its western boundary because Randwick Council’s controls presently permit one that high.
The warning comes from preselected West Ward Greens Council candidate Philipa Veitch.
Ms Veitch states that such an excessive height control would allow a 7 storey building stretching north along the school’s entire western boundary to be built between Todman Avenue and Bowral Street Kensington.
The Greens candidate warns that:
“A future 7 storey building on this site this will block winter sunlight from reaching much of the school grounds after midday. That is not acceptable for a busy urban school on such a small site.”
Ms Veitch is calling on both Randwick City Council and the State Planning Minister to work together to amend the area’s main planning instrument so that the height limit is lowered to 9.5 meters. This is what many other local schools have around their borders – such as South Coogee Public.
Randwick Council is already trying to have the specific problem property lowered from 21 metres to 19 metres under its draft Kensington and Kingsford Planning Strategy. But the Greens candidate thinks that this is still too high.
Another worry is that the Council draft plan might be superseded by a possible private developer’s proposal, making the height limit even higher. This is a real possibility as the NSW Planning Minister has recently supported proposals for 85 metre high tower buildings just 100 meters west at the Todman Avenue/Anzac Parade intersection.
The Kensington Public School is bordered by Bowral Avenue to the north, Doncaster Avenue to the east, and Todman Avenue to the south. It is thus buffered to some degree from adverse development on three of its sides. But not on its western boundary adjacent to the “B2 Local Centre” zoning which runs along nearby Anzac Parade.
Permissible building heights in the section of B2 zoning next to the school are currently set at 21 metres. This could allow for a 7 to 8 story building replacing the current 1 or 2 storey structures currently sitting along the entirety of the School’s western boundary.
The Council’s Draft Kensington and Kingsford Planning Strategy is proposing a stepping down in heights as you travel away from Anzac Parade east along Todman Avenue. There will be 60 metres on Anzac Parade dropping down to first 31 metres and then to 19 metres on the property next to the school (see Figure 157, page 207).