A furious couple is worried the peace they get relaxing in their backyard pool is about to be shattered thanks to a duplex with a seven-metre high glass window that is being planned for next-door.
Robyna Martinovic and her husband live in Mermaid Waters, in the Gold Coast, but their little oasis is at risk of being overshadowed by a giant duplex set to be developed next door.
The two-storey duplex on Vatakoula Parade is yet to be approved by council, and Ms Martinovic has concerns over how those living in the new home, if approved, will be able to see directly into her house.
Plans show the large glass wall would be built on the side of the house and in the middle of the hallway – meaning whoever lives inside the duplex will be coming and going past the window with a direct eyeline into Ms Martinovic’s backyard.
‘How do we live in our backyard, with our swimming pool and verandahs being overlooked by a two-and-a-half-storey glass wall?’ she told Daily Mail Australia.
‘Our house may be old, but we have worked hard all our lives to get to this point.’
A one-storey brick home in Mermaid Waters on the Gold Coast is set to be developed into a two-storey mega duplex – creating tension in the neighbourhood
Ms Martinovic hired a lawyer to write a letter to Gold Coast City Council with their concerns over the new development.
‘The proposed building is not in keeping with the residential scale and character of the area, in terms of character and built form,’ the letter, written in December, to council read.
The letter also detailed concerns around the duplex having direct view into the Martinovic’s home.
The couple claim the proposed guest bedroom window looks directly down into their bedroom, and the proposed bathroom window overlooks their existing entertainment area.
The windows for where the kitchen and pantry are planned to be are also higher than the boundary fence and overlook the Martinovic’s pool and backyard – as does the large glass window in the hallway.
Pictured is what the duplex in Mermaid Waters will look like if the development application is approved
‘The whole length of the hallway is a direct line viewing platform,’ the letter continued.
‘This will significantly decrease the amenity of the existing backyard and devalue the adjacent property because of the invasion of privacy.
‘The privacy of both existing residents and future occupants is not protected.’
The couple are also concerned about the shadow the duplex will cast onto their pool and backyard.
Another issue is the boat ramp at the back of the Martinovic’s house, which has been there for 46 years.
‘The problem we have is where they’re going to build the deck and the swimming, pool it’s going to be over where our boat ramp is,’ Ms Martinovic said.
She claimed the duplex was not in line with the town’s plan for a low density area.
‘I’m worried about these developments that go through and for the people who believe the area that we’re living in is low density,’ she said.
‘The big glass panels on the side of the duplex is there for no other purpose than to see into our backyard. If it’s about light or air then put in obscured glass.’
Robyna Martinovic and her husband live in a two-storey home (pictured) next door to where the duplex may be built. They have concerns their privacy will be ruined by the development
A seven-metre glass window is seen on the side of plans for the duplex. Ms Martinovic claims the window will look directly into her backyard and pool
The development application for the duplex was submitted in September last year and is yet to be approved.
The plans will involve turning the current one-storey red brick home into a two-storey mega duplex.
Both units will include a pool, garage, four bedrooms including a master suite and a balcony.
The developers, Findasite Town Planners, were asked to respond to potential issues raised by the council in November of last year.
In the document, the council said the development had a ‘bulky and dominant’ build and was not keeping with the ‘desired residential scale and character of the area’.
Findasite rejected this and said ‘large dwellings and dual occupancies are common within the precinct’, and added those in the area would have the opportunity to object to the proposal.
The developers also said that some of the windows that have a view onto the neighbouring properties are at a height where those inside the duplex wouldn’t be able to see out of.
‘Findasite disagrees that the proposed setbacks are out of character for the area,’ they said.
Findasite also said the development is ‘achieving an acceptable level of privacy that is anticipated within the Low Density Residential Zone.’
The owner of the development declined to comment to Daily Mail Australia.
Findasite was contacted for further comment.
A spokesperson for the Gold Coast City Council said a decision was yet to be made on the duplex’s approval.
‘The development application is Impact assessable and is currently in the Decision period. Assessment of the application is continuing, and a decision will be made in due course,’ they said.
The planned development is also around the corner from a duplex under construction that has been dubbed the ‘glass castle’ – and has already sparked a neighbourhood war.
In the same suburb, another neighbourhood war has kicked off. Developers Scott Koning (right) and wife Xumei Chi (centre) were confronted about their neighbour’s concerns over their duplex development which has been approved
That project saw tensions reach boiling point between developer Scott Koning and neighbours Gary Hopkinson and Bijma Wati.
The couple had moved from Sydney and bought their home to retire but now say their slice of paradise is ruined because the new development is too ‘intrusive’.
Mr Hopkinson and Ms Wati said they could no longer comfortably use their pool or outdoor showers as their new neighbours can look down into their backyard, and also into the guest room they hoped their grandkids would stay in.
Rita, the neighbour on the other side of the ‘glass monstrosity’, has stopped her daily ritual of having breakfast next to the pool because of how loud the construction is.
Mr Koning earlier said he didn’t care about his neighbour’s ‘little emotions’ and said he’d been granted approval for the build.
In January, Mr Hopkinson and Mr Koning and his wife Xumei Chi were caught in a heated exchange out the front of the duplex.
Tensions have flared over the two three-storey development projects being built by Scott Koning and his wife Xumei Chi in Mermaid Waters, on the Gold Coast
The Gold Coast City Council wrote to Mr Koning in February to tell him there were ‘inconsistencies’ with his development.
‘This includes screening treatments, opening windows in locations conflicting with the approval and balcony balustrading,’ the council said.
‘The development is not yet complete and is still under construction. The City will continue to monitor the progress of the development to ensure that the completed development complies with the approved plans and that any non-compliances are rectified.’