The city is experiencing a significant increase in its population and in the number, density and heights of new developments across the municipality. These factors are having an impact on our existing parks, by minimising their exposure to sunlight.

Protecting the valued qualities of our parks and their access to sunlight is important. Health research indicates that access to winter sunlight is recommended for good physical and mental health, so winter sunlight protection for all parks has become a key priority.

Winter sun protection is only prioritised for central city parks. Elsewhere in the municipality sunlight protection is in place for autumn and spring.

Amendment C278 proposes to introduce new planning controls to protect winter sunlight access to all parks across the municipality (outside of the Hoddle Grid, Southbank and Docklands) and an updated Sunlight to Public Spaces Local Policy to reflect the revised policy position.

Winter shadow simulation

The animation demonstrates the levels of sunlight and shade resulting from existing and proposed built form at Gardiner Reserve, North Melbourne during winter. It shows the difference in the length and direction of shadows throughout the day. This local park is a good example of a valuable open space which is susceptible to increased overshadowing from built form at the park edge if development isn’t carefully managed.