Sunlight in winter is imperative to our health and wellbeing. Melbournians, especially those living in high-rise residential areas may not be getting enough Vitamin D in their diet. Amendment C278 to the Melbourne Planning Scheme is designed to redress the issue.
The City of Melbourne consulted with the community and found that sunlight in parks is valued. It is often not possible to create new parks so it is important that our existing parks remain sunny and pleasant areas. In the last twenty years Melbourne’s population has increased substantially and so has the height of buildings, especially in central areas which causes greater overshadowing of parks.
The proposed revised approach will increase sunlight protection hours from 10.00am to 3.00pm in winter. Currently the hours are 11.00am – 2.00pm at the equinox (generally, in spring and autumn). It will also introduce a mandatory ‘no additional overshadowing’ control.
In the midst of a cold and grey Melbourne winter, more sunlight is always welcome but this will have implications for otherwise expected development opportunities and be a matter for consideration in due diligence work.