New South Wales
To Whom It May Concern,
I moved into the Princeton building in 2006. I spent 10 amazing years living in the building until late in 2015 when my partner and I moved to a bigger place upon expecting our first child. I have continued to own my unit in the building with hopes of moving back in time, when our children grow up!
When I first learnt that Sydney Metro had compulsorily acquired the building next door for the Pitt St metro stop, I was thrilled! I am a firm believer of progress, infrastructure and public transport.
When I learnt that (unsurprisingly) they were going to build a large tower, I again was excited! This brings shops and restaurants and therefore people which extends the buzzing city vibe.
When I learnt that the tower would reduce my views, again I was not surprised and not concerned. For me, a “city view” means accepting and loving the towers all around.
However, when I learnt that my sun exposure would be severely limited during winter, this was when my attitude shifted. My apartment is at the back of the building with North – East facing windows and balconies. My apartment will be affected by the new development.
I want to repeat, I am not opposed to the development! It SHOULD go ahead. Having a tower block with units or offices directly above a significant metro hub should be encouraged – this is efficient town planning. I also firmly believe in local planning principles and guidelines.
Yet the design of this development is such that it severely reduces the sun access to residents living within the Princeton building, which violates the local planning guidelines. What is the point of having rules if they are not adhered to? We know it’s a crime to steal, with no exceptions. Is it not a crime to steal someone’s access to sunlight?
I think there is a misconception that living in the city is dirty and noisy and lacking clean air and green spaces. I totally disagree. My apartment was mid-level and all I ever heard was this constant hum of background noise which you got used to very quickly. (It was quieter living in the city compared to where I am now in Surry Hills!) I could easily access greenery or water views at Hyde Park, the Botanical Gardens, or Darling Harbour. Being able to walk to work, to the shops, to the many swimming pools, etc was an added bonus – I reduced my carbon footprint, got plenty of incidental exercise and didn’t require a car. And a big part of why I loved city living was my apartment which was absolutely covered in morning sun, all through winter. It kept my apartment warm and light and made it my home. The idea that this can be taken away and replaced by a dominating tower that will turn my apartment from a sunny and light winter paradise to a dark and cold dungeon is frankly, horrible. I think this would severely reduce enjoyment of living in the city. How would you feel if this happened at your house?
I implore you to please re-consider the design of this new development. Yes, it does have to go ahead. Yes, it will be great for Sydney and NSW as a whole. But please contemplate design changes to consider the 24 metre separation between habitable rooms and the solar access to my apartment.
I know that myself, and all the other Princeton owners would forever be grateful.