12-room limit proposed for boarding houses in R2 low density zones

Artist's impression from a recently submitted DA for a boarding house with 16 rooms in a R2 low residential zone in Best Crescent, Kirrawee. Picture: DA
Artist's impression from a recently submitted DA for a boarding house with 16 rooms in a R2 low residential zone in Best Crescent, Kirrawee. Picture: DA

The state government is moving to place a limit of 12 on the number of rooms in boarding house developments in low density residential zones.

Minister for Planning, Anthony Roberts, said the changes had been drafted in response to concerns from communities about local impacts of some boarding house developments.

“Tough rules already exist governing the development of boarding houses to ensure they are only approved where they are close to public transport, compatible with council rules on density and building height, and where there’s adequate additional parking,” he said.

“We have listened to the community and councils and what we’ve heard is that they want more limits placed on these developments in low density areas.

“That’s why we’re proposing a 12 boarding room limit on boarding house developments in the R2 zone, to address community concerns about amenity impacts, such as overlooking, overshadowing and loss of on-street car parking.

Mr Roberts said the Labor government introduced a boarding house State Environmental Planning Policy (SEPP) in 2009, but never imposed a room limit.

“Establishing a maximum number of boarding rooms per site in low density zones will help to better manage any amenity impacts of boarding house developments on adjoining and nearby properties,” he said.

Mr Roberts said the Affordable Rental Housing State Environmental Planning Policy (ARHSEPP) had already been amended earlier this year to address concerns about off street parking.

“The AHRSEPP was originally introduced in 2009 to increase the supply and diversity of affordable rental and social housing throughout NSW,” he said.

“However, it’s clear that the size, scale and proliferation of boarding house developments in the R2 zone is not in line with what was envisaged when the ARHSEPP was introduced.

“We already made changes in June this year, in response to community concerns, to increase car parking standards to 0.5 spaces per boarding room in all locations.

“The proposed changes we are releasing today support the government’s commitment to keep listening and to make sure communities are at the heart of planning policy,” he said.

The community is invited to comment on the proposed amendments which will be on exhibition from November 28 to December 19.

Visit: planning.nsw.gov.au/affordablerentalhousingsepp