Morley couple fears building will block solar panels

Robert Youenf fears a two-storey building going up next door will block the sun from the solar panels on the roof of his home.  Picture: Andrew Ritchie    d473250
Robert Youenf fears a two-storey building going up next door will block the sun from the solar panels on the roof of his home. Picture: Andrew Ritchie d473250

A MORLEY couple have been left frustrated after the City of Bayswater failed to quantify how much of their solar panels would be overshadowed by a two-storey development.

Robert Youenf and Gaye Cooper sold half of their sub-divided block on Mickleham Way before the City approved a development application on the adjoining property, which is on Sandalford Way, in July.

Bayswater Mayor Barry McKenna said the development application satisfied the necessary requirements of the State Government’s R codes so the City was statutorily bound to grant it planning approval and it did not need to go to council.

The WA Planning Commission’s (WAPC) R-Codes State Planning Policy states developers need to ensure adequate provision of direct sun for adjoining buildings and provide information about how properties would be affected by overshadowing.

Mr Youenf said his 13 solar panels were connected so if one panel was covered, the whole system would not work.

“Gaye lost her job because of a medical condition so we thought a long-term investment for us would only be me working; let’s try to cut one bill down as much as we can,” he said.

Ms Cooper said she had filed a complaint about the City to the Ombudsman WA.

Cr McKenna said the City gave Mr Youenf and Ms Cooper the opportunity to view the plans prior to development approval.

“In relation to the proposed development at Sandalford Way, the development application demonstrated that the property would overshadow the house next door by a maximum of 20 per cent (at a point when overshadowing is at its greatest),” he said.

“This is within the 25 per cent overshadowing permitted under the State government’s R codes.”

He said the City would not compensate the residents and had not received any notification from the Ombudsman WA about the complaint.

MORE: Ocean Reef Marina: State Government commits $120 million to project

MORE: Federal and State Governments commit $7 million to Indian Ocean Drive road safety improvements

MORE: Cycling stores hand out UV pens to help identify stolen bikes