POLL: Backyards feel the squeeze as house blocks shrink

Kevin Carlin, managing director of Carlin, the company behind Parkview estate.
Kevin Carlin, managing director of Carlin, the company behind Parkview estate. John Farmer

BACKYARDS are on the way out in Toowoomba, but rather than feeling squeezed, a new generation of property owners is embracing the change.

The Glenvale housing estate Parkview has become the city's first commercial development to be designed under the Residential Choice zone, which has no minimum lot size.

The estate's first two stages include 13 lots between 203 - 270sq m, just enough room for a townhouse or terrace house.

All have sold or are under contract.

Is 162 square metres too small for lot sizes in Toowoomba?

This poll ended on 20 December 2013.

Current Results





This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.

Toowoomba Regional Council will take the minimum even lower, with lots in its Freyling Park estate starting at just 162sq m.

Toowoomba's smallest house lot is currently 250sq m in the Mort Estate.

Mayor Paul Antonio said the rise in smaller lots was a response to market conditions.

"We're looking at a lot of demand, so we're responding to that demand."

Kevin Carlin, managing director of Carlin, the company behind Parkview, said he was not surprised that the smaller lots were proving popular.

Mr Carlin said it helped that the estate included green spaces and a large park.

"Most people don't have time for a big backyard anymore and landlords don't want to have to rely on tenants to look after gardens," he said.

"At Parkview, there's no need for a big backyard.

"If you want to kick the ball around with the kids, you just have to walk a few metres to the park."

What you told us online

  • I think it's a good idea and the way of the future. Yes, the lots are tiny, but that's the way these estates are! It's not for everyone, only certain people will be able to make it work for them. It's so expensive to own your own home, this way people will own their own home if they don't need much room. - Janelle Ridley
  • Too tiny! I used to live in a similar situation and it's no good! Got tired of neighbours' parties, could hear every word they said, toilets flush, dogs etc. Might be alright for uni students or as an elderly complex but that's about it! - Making Memories
  • Well I know folks who want a huge house but not the work of a yard and lawn, so this would suit people like that! Especially people who work long hours and never go outside! - Loren Waites
  • The old limit I think was 440 square meters. Seemed sensible for sustainable and reasonable development. 162 is just not Toowoomba. - Graham Thompson
  • I think that size block is quite ridiculous. That is very small - Anita Edwards
  • Kearneys Spring is not out in the suburbs, it is on the doorstep of the university. There are thousands of students out there and they need accommodation. Councils should have started zoning the area high density 40 years ago, instead of having the area full of big houses with big backyards that students can't afford to pay the rent on. Hopefully this will set a precedent and see the 40-year-old houses near USQ replaced with affordable student flats. - Alex Law
  • I personally would like to see a development with land size between 900 to 1500sq m - Scott Tunnah
  • I'll stick with my couple of acres thanks very much - Jo Haines
  • Ridiculous! - Monique Hodge
  • No wonder kids sit inside on computers and gaming consoles ... busy parents don't have time to take them to the parks. - Vicki Fitch

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