Bren88 wrote:I've most often seen it singled out as POS to the rear.
Being private, has multiple terms and meanings.
For property and land, it's most commonly used to separate from public. Public open space is quite obvious, private can, imo, be to the front. A LA may wish to calculate any area how they see fit (unless it contravenes regs).
Just because a front garden is in public view does not prevent it from being private.
Being private, is not always the same as having privacy.
Right boys and girls, the opinion sharing and handbags at dawn ends and the online references and in-post quotations begin.
Time for some CPD, archiseek-style
This post from henno pretty much nailed it as far as housing goes, back in 2008:
However I've just checked the link in the post and its broken.
This is a current reference Sustainable Residential Development guidelines mentioned in my 2007 reference given below.
Here is the 2009 link:
Guidelines for Planning Authorities on
(Cities, Towns & Villages)
Chapter 7 The home and its setting
Private and communal open space
7.8 All houses (terraced, semi-detached and detached) should have an
area of private open space behind the building line. The area of such
private space will be influenced by the separation between buildings
(see above) and plot widths. Smaller patio-type rear gardens may be
acceptable in more innovative layouts where communal open space
in the form of a courtyard is also available. For terraced houses in
particular, this can often be more appropriate as it offers a method of
accessing the rear of all dwellings (by residents only) and can be
visually more attractive than narrow fenced-in gardens.
Roof gardens may offer a satisfactory alternative to courtyard
communal open space, provided that climatic and safety factors are
7.9 The provision of adequate and well-designed private open space for
apartments23 is crucial in meeting the amenity needs of residents; in
particular, usable outdoor space is a high priority for families.
Private open space can be provided in the form of rear gardens or
patios for ground floor units, and balconies at upper levels. It is
important that in the latter case adequate semi-private or communal
open space, in the form of landscaped areas, should also be provided.
In the Chapter 7 Checklist the following question is asked:
â€¢ Do all houses (terraced, semi-detached and detached) have
an area of private open space behind the building line?
The below seems to be the 2007 position from the DOE on Apartments and its a current link so may work as detail advice with the above 2009 general guide - there don't seem to be any contradictions from a quick scan.
Sustainable Urban Housing:
Design Standards for New Apartments
Chapter 4 Communal and private open spaces
4.1 The provision of adequate and well-designed communal and private open space for each apartment is crucial in meeting the amenity needs of residents; in particular, usable outdoor space is a high priority for families. (The provision of public open space will be addressed in the Sustainable Residential Development guidelines).
Communal open space
4.2 Communal open space will commonly be provided within the landscaped courtyards of perimeter blocks; designers need to ensure that the heights and orientation of adjoining blocks permit adequate levels of sunlight to reach such space throughout the year. Roof gardens may offer a satisfactory alternative where climatic and safety factors are fully considered, but childrenâ€™s play is not passively supervised as with courtyards. All communal and private open spaces need adequate sunlight â€“ see â€œSite Layout Planning for Daylight and Sunlight: A Guide to Good Practiceâ€ (Building Research Establishment, 1991).
Private open space
4.3 Private open space can be provided in the form of rear gardens or patios for ground floor units, and balconies at upper levels. It is important that in the latter case adequate semi-private or communal open space, in the form of landscaped areas, should also be provided. Private open space at ground floor level needs some form of boundary treatment to ensure privacy and security.
4.4 Balconies (or glass-screened â€œwinter gardensâ€, separated from living spaces) need to be of a certain minimum depth to be useful from an amenity viewpoint, being able to accommodate chairs and a small table. A minimum depth of 1.5 metres is recommended, generally extending for the full length of the external living room wall. While deeper balconies might be desirable in certain cases, this has to be balanced against the need to avoid overshadowing the living room. Balconies should be accessed from living rooms, not bedrooms.
4.5 Site conditions, such as elevations facing north or overlooking busy streets, or tall buildings, may diminish the amenity value of balconies. In such cases, it will be the designerâ€™s responsibility to provide some form of compensating amenity for the occupants. This might take the form, for instance, of above-average sized living rooms and generous landscaped communal open spaces.
4.6 Balustrading to balconies should be safe for children. Vertical privacy screens should be provided between adjoining balconies.
So in general:
Private Open Space to the front in general only exists in Apartment developments in screen off areas of patios [ground floors] and balconies [upper floors]
Where it is aggregated where it means reserved for the use of the residents of the scheme and is not publicly accessible, it is termed Communal Open Space - this inlcudes landscaped areas on the ground level and roof gardens.
My comments in relation to Housing Development stand.
Private Open Space is normally only deemed to exist behind the front building line, whether its to the side or the rear, but some townhouse-style developments and high density developments may have screened courtyards
In certain restricted Mews developments you could argue that the front courtyard enclosed by a high wall and gate is also private open space, but normally this is a feature of Mews Lane Developments and won't replace the minimum back garden requriements.
We have recently fought and lost and appeal who provided NO rear garden and only a substandard side garden and had to move the front building line to within 500mm of the back of path on a site where the house was originally a shed in 1960 or thereabouts. Seems the funny decisions will always be with us, but this was a once off, beside an existing modernist intervention and on balance will probably improve the accommodation hugely, with a sloping roof to the rear going down to a 2.4M eaves and no dormers there was no real overlooking issue and no overshadowing. Clever fellow designed it.