In a case of a local bureaucracy run rampant, an Adelaide cubby-house has drawn the ire of an angry neighbour and the local council. The Mitcham Council forced the children’s father (and builder) Chris Della Vedova to front a development assessment panel to discuss the “unauthorised building”.
The fiasco began when the father of two decided to build his kids a small cubby house in a tree within their own backyard. “The boys wanted a cubby and you put up a cubby, as you do,” Mr. Della Vedova told 891 ABC Adelaide. “It’s a bit off the ground, a-metre-and-a-half off the ground, and we didn’t think that would be a problem for anyone. But we got a complaint from a neighbour and a letter from the council … we built it at Easter last year and had a letter from the council in June and then we’ve been back and forth with them since then.”
What followed was a lengthy bureaucratic process and the compulsory payment of a development application fee to the council. “There was a lot of stress associated with it. It’s time, it’s money, it’s not the way you want to spend your days really,” he told the ABC. “I guess what I find disturbing is the amount of money that went into it, not from my side but from the council’s side, having to do all the reports, back and forth, out taking pictures and so on.”
In spite of all the time and effort, Mr. Della Vedova remains optimistic about the experience. “It’s done now, that’s the good news, I’m happy about that,” he said. “I don’t think the council’s out to get people building cubby houses; I think they just have to respond to complaints. At the end of the day the development panel was a group of reasonable people and said ‘No, it’s fine’.”
D.A approval for a cubby house? What’s the world coming to?
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