Couple forced to remove driveway by council
A NERANG couple claim they are being victimised by the council and face a $30,000 outlay after being ordered to remove a driveway.
Matt and Nicole Fowler bought their Mariposa Ct property with two driveways six months ago. They said a building inspector signed off on the purchase after finding no compliance issues.
But two weeks ago the Fowlers received a letter from the Gold Coast City Council ordering them to remove one driveway, backfill and returf the area.
Ms Fowler, 43, said she called the council and was told more issues had been found with the property.
"They said 'if you don't dig it up, we're going to report you to the Building Compliance Commission because your carport wasn't approved to be a garage'," she said.
"We have complained about the way this was handled, because we received this letter out of nowhere.
"Now they have found a problem with a bald patch in the grass ... it goes on and on."
A property can only have two driveways if it has 40m or more of street frontage.
The Fowler's frontage is only 17m.
Husband Matt, 45, says they face a $30,000 bill to remove one driveway and convert the garage to a carport.
"It's about $15,000 to get a Bobcat and a truck here to dig it up and another $15,000, easy, to pull three walls down of the garage and the rolling door.
"We feel like we are being bullied ... they said, 'who do you think you are to have two driveways?'."
The home has been sold three times since it was built in 1995 and no applications were made regarding the second driveway or a garage.
A council spokesman said officers were discussing a time frame with the Fowlers to carry out the work.
"Our officers identified the property has an unapproved driveway while conducting work in the street," he said.
"The owner must undertake work to rectify it."