Residents in the Moore Creek Gardens Estate are claiming they were mislead in the purchasing of their homes, after a re-zoning application was approved to halve the block sizes of the remaining stages.
In early 2016 resident Greg Stephenson purchased his 2000 square metre property on Bluebell Way. He claims that the real estate agent provided Tamworth Regional Council approved maps showing that the remaining development of the estate would have block sizes of 2000 and 4000 square metres.
Those block sizes have since been reduced to 1000 and 2000 square metres respectively, allowing for an additional 500 lots to what was initially proposed.
“My major concern is with increased traffic, but it will also take away from the rural lifestyle, which is why we purchased here to begin with,” Mr Stephenson said.
“It was just mis-represented – it is not what we were told we were buying, and I believe the Development Application (DA) for my house would have been with council when they were considering these changes, yet we have never been officially notified.”
However a spokesperson for TRC has said that the decision was made following an extended review in consultation with local residents, which included adjustments, and has been supported by NSW State Government agencies.
“Council sought feedback from residents in the area expressing concern that the perceived increased density may detract from the rural lifestyle. The public exhibition period was extended to ensure that all affected residents could voice their concerns.
“Council has made some changes to the proposed amendments in response to concerns submitted by community members in the consultation process.
“The revised proposal aims to ensure that the lot size on an undeveloped lot will not change where it shares a common boundary with a developed lot. In effect, there will be a buffer between already developed lots and future lots where changes will occur.”
However Mr Stephenson said that he was unaware of the community consultation, and believes that everyone that will be affected in the area should have been directly notified.
“It is all well and good to put it on public display, but what is the point if the public being impacted don’t know about it,” he said.
“It would appear that the council does not consider my block to be affected as they did not even have the courtesy to advise me of the proposed changes. I may not abut the smaller blocks as some of my neighbours, but the smaller blocks will have an effect on the price of my property.
“If these changes are granted by council I will have no choice but to conclude that Council is complicit in the misrepresentation.”
The additional lots will bring the Hills Plain Region to 3600 lots overall, 400 lots short of infrastructure and planning capacity.
“The adjustment in lot sizes will allow for an additional 500 lots within the development. This is still short of the areas full capacity regarding sewer infrastructure however it best meets the needs of the existing residents. A traffic study was also completed which classified the proposal as being low impact,” the TRC spokesperson said.
“Our goal is to ensure that the public infrastructure in the area and the planning for the area is used to its full potential, whilst ensuring the development meets the needs of the community.”