Opinion: Developments must comply

The City of Melville has approved developments that do not comply with Australian standards.
The City of Melville has approved developments that do not comply with Australian standards.

THE City of Melville has endorsed for approval at least three multi-unit developments that do not comply with the National Construction Code or Australian Standards. These non-compliant buildings could pose a safety risk to the public and the building’s occupants.

A recent ABC Four Corners program and a current Senate inquiry have highlighted the issue of local governments, developers and builders not adhering to the provisions of the National Construction Code (Building Code of Australia) in relation to cladding on multi-storey buildings.

Mezzanines have been approved in multi-storey residential developments that do not comply with the Australian National Construction Code and international fire standards.

A footpath was approved with a 1 in 5 cross-fall, far in excess of the maximum of 1 in 40 allowable under the Australian Standard, presenting a major safety hazard to pedestrians.

Vehicle ramps to basement car parks in two development applications were approved with no level stopping section before the footpath or the roadway, contrary to the City of Melville’s policy and Australian Standards.

These breaches of building safety standards have been endorsed by the City of Melville planning department and approved at Joint Development Assessment Panel (JDAP) sittings with the support of councillors.

Councillor Nicole Foxton has ignored ratepayer concerns and voted in favour of approving two of these non-compliant developments at JDAP sittings.

Our building codes have been developed over hundreds of years because of great fires, building collapses, overcrowding and natural disasters such as earthquakes, floods and cyclonic winds.

They ensure our buildings are safe.

Some insurers are now refusing to insure buildings that do not comply with the building codes.

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