Australia: Inside track: Planning, Environment & Sustainability - In the media, in practice and courts, and recent cases

Last Updated: 8 November 2019
Most Read Contributor in Australia, October 2019

In the media

Using economics to improve urban planning

Urban economics can help transform the way local councils approach planning proposals, enabling them to take into consideration economic assessments and leading to better decision making, an expert says (10 October 2019) https://www.governmentnews.com.au/using-economics-to-improve-urban-planning/

Sustainable homes pay dividends in health, jobs and growth

While not couched in the technical language of sustainable design, these words describe the benefits that sustainable design brings: energy efficiency, natural light, comfortable temperatures and connection with the surrounding environment. Homes like this are already being built in Australia, but if they could be considered the norm rather than an expensive option (07 October 2019)

https://www.thefifthestate.com.au/innovation/residential-2/sustainable-homes-health-jobs-and-growth/

NSW

The sky's the limit: Developers and councils transforming Sydney into Manhattan

Developers are seeking to raise height limits to house Sydney's burgeoning population and make windfall profits (20 October 2019) The sky's the limit: Developers and councils transforming Sydney into Manhattan

Central Station Redevelopment Demonstrates How Cities Can Be Shaped By Transport

Around the world major transport nodes are generating exciting urban renewal projects that lead to significant development and the announcement of plans for redevelopment around Sydney's Central Station is a world class example." says Urban Taskforce (17 October 2019)

Central Station Redevelopment Demonstrates How Cities Can Be Shaped By Transport

Better future for general household waste

The NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) is seeking feedback on the future use of general household waste, Mixed Waste Organic Outputs (MWOO) (which is made from this waste) and on a proposed transition package to support the alternative waste treatment (AWT) industry to move to sustainable uses (16 October 2019)

. Better future for general household waste

Urban Taskforce Supports A Review Of The Independent Planning Commission

Triguboff Gets Green Light on Parramatta's Tallest Tower

Despite Sydney's slower residential property market in recent years, property tycoon Harry Triguboff will push on with plans to build Parramatta's tallest residential tower after getting the go-ahead from the New South Wales Planning Panel (11 October 2019)

https://theurbandeveloper.com/articles/triguboff-receives-green-light-on-parramattas-tallest-tower

Court fines Newcastle City Council $55,000 for water pollution offences

Newcastle Local Court has fined Newcastle City Council for causing water pollution on three separate occasions between March and June 2018 at Summerhill Waste Management Facility. This followed prosecution by the NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) (11October 2019)

Court fines Newcastle City Council $55,000 for water pollution offences

Lendlease Wins Approval for Barangaroo Tower

Plans for Lendlease's 30-storey residential and retail development at Sydney's Barangaroo has received the green light from New South Wales Independent Planning Commission (10 October 2019)

https://theurbandeveloper.com/articles/lendleases-146m-barangaroo-tower-approved

Company behind Opal Tower fiasco caught up in new building defect row

Residents of yet another Sydney apartment block have been rocked by alarming safety fears — this time allegedly involving their balconies. The warning comes after an investigation allegedly revealed the block's balustrades were "structurally defective" and of "inadequate strength" (09 October 2019)

https://www.news.com.au/finance/real-estate/buying/company-behind-opal-tower-fiasco-caught-up-in-new-building-defect-row/news-story/b356707b79f507a377b339a71a5b2f22

Uncertainty in the NSW planning process is in the eyes of the beholder

Planning Minister Rob Stokes announced a commission review on Friday, and vowed to "clear the decks of proposals that have been stuck in the system for too long" after "six years of uncertainty" over Rix's Creek (08 October 2019) https://www.newcastleherald.com.au/story/6423486/joanne-mccarthy-digging-for-answers-beyond-the-planning-process-outrage/

NSW building reform bill flags insurance requirement for designers

A registration scheme would be set up for NSW-based design practitioners, who must also be "adequately insured" as part of the state government's efforts to reform the troubled building industry (07 October 2019)

NSW building reform bill flags insurance requirement for designers

Sydney's 'next frontier' must be carefully planned

The NSW government has announced that the area just to the west of the CBD is "the next frontier" for the city's development. The Greater Sydney Commission, the government's main planning advisor, handed down a report over the weekend and its key recommendation was for the government to spend up to 12 months developing a strategy (07 October 2019)

https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw/sydney-s-next-frontier-must-be-carefully-planned-20191007-p52yet.html

Political donations hidden from NSW planning authorities by big corporations

Some of Australia's biggest corporations have hidden political donations from planning authorities, which is a criminal offence in New South Wales (07 October 2019)

https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/oct/07/political-donations-hidden-from-nsw-planning-authorities-by-big-corporations

In Practice and Courts

Green Star – Design & As Built v1.3 and Green Star – Interiors v1.3 have arrived

Green Star – Design & As Built v1.3 & Interiors v1.3 rating tools have now been released and are available to download from the Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA)website. (11 October 2019)

NSW

Have your say: Design and Building Practitioners Bill

This draft Bill seeks to improve the quality and compliance of design documentation and to strengthen accountability across the design, building and construction sector. Public consultation on the draft Bill closes 16 October 2019 https://www.fairtrading.nsw.gov.au/news-and-updates/news/have-your-say-on-the-draft-design-and-building-practitioners-bill-2019

Activation Precincts SEPP and the Parkes draft master plan

Feedback is sought on state-wide planning control for Special Activation Precincts, as well as the first Special Activation Precinct draft master plan, which is tailored to the unique attributes and needs of Parkes NSW.

Submissions close on 20 October 2019

https://www.planningportal.nsw.gov.au/exhibition/activation-precincts-sepp-and-parkes-draft-master-plan

Commission invites submissions on five water sharing plan reviews

The Commission invites submissions on its review of five water sharing plans. Submissions are to address five key questions in relation to social, environmental and economic outcomes, and opportunities for improvement. Submissions close on 25 October 2019 Read More

NSW Fair Trading: Part 6 of the EP&A Act postponed until 1 December 2019

The Part 6 provisions of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act have been postponed and will now start on 1 December 2019. This delay will allow time for the sector to adjust to the regulatory changes that have been progressing around fire safety and the Building and Development Certifiers Act 2018

Planning Circular – Commencement of Part 6 (building and subdivision certification provisions)

State Environmental Planning Policy (Exempt and Complying Development Codes) 2008 deferred

The Low Rise Medium Density Housing Code has been amended to extend for a further short period, until 31 October 2019. For landowners, pending recommendations of the review, landowners in deferred council areas will not be able to use the Code to lodge a complying development application for dual occupancies, manor houses or terraces until 1 November 2019 (or 1 July 2020 in the City of Ryde)

http://epla.org.au/news/27-june-2019-department-of-planning-and-environment-news

Cases

NSW

Croghan v Blacktown City Council [2019] NSWCA 248

COSTS – party/party – exceptions to general rule that costs follow the event – Land and Environment Court – Class 3 compensation proceedings – where UCPR r 42.1 does not apply and offer of compromise rejected and judgment obtained for less than amount of offer – application of UCPR r 42.15(2) – principles relevant to exercise of discretion to "order otherwise" – whether primary judge erred in applying those principles

ENVIRONMENT AND PLANNING – Land and Environment Court – practice and procedure – costs –Class 3 compensation proceedings – where presumption that costs follow the event does not apply – whether primary judge erred in applying UCPR r 42.15 Croghan v Blacktown City Council [2019] NSWCA 248

Islamic Association of Prospect v Blacktown City Council [2019] NSWLEC 1494

DEVELOPMENT APPLICATION – Place of public worship – traffic impacts – driveway access – pedestrian safety – drainage – public interest Islamic Association of Prospect v Blacktown City Council [2019] NSWLEC 1494

Roberts v The Council of the City of Sydney [2019] NSWLEC 1496

MODIFICATION APPLICATION – application to modify development consent – residential building- whether substantially the same – jurisdictional test – appeal dismissed

Roberts v The Council of the City of Sydney [2019] NSWLEC 1496

Midcoast Petroleum Pty Ltd v Keldros Pty Ltd (No 2) [2019] NSWSC 1406

COSTS - Calderbank offer made by defendants pre-trial – offer not accepted by plaintiff – whether warrants a departure from the ordinary rule as to costs – held that the plaintiff's failure to accept the offer was unreasonable – special costs order is warranted  -  issue by the Council to Keldros of a clean-up notice

Midcoast Petroleum Pty Ltd v Keldros Pty Ltd (No 2) [2019] NSWSC 1406

Aussie Hoist No.2 Pty Ltd v Camden Council [2019] NSWLEC 1493

DEVELOPMENT APPLICATION – construction of an industrial shed – whether the proposed development generally accords with the provisions of an indicative layout plan (ILP) in Camden Growth Centres DCP – suitability of the subject site for the proposed development – mitigation of potential contamination risks on the subject site – contributions payable under the provisions of s 7.11 of the EP&A Act – application of Camden Growth Centres Contributions Plan

Aussie Hoist No.2 Pty Ltd v Camden Council [2019] NSWLEC 1493

Ghazi Al Ali Architect P/L v Burwood Council [2019] NSWLEC 1488

DEVELOPMENT APPEAL – residential apartment development – residential flat building – compliance with the National Construction Code – performance solution for fire egress

Ghazi Al Ali Architect P/L v Burwood Council [2019] NSWLEC 1488

Tiffany & Co (Australia) Pty Limited v Sydney Metro [2019] NSWLEC 147

ENVIRONMENT AND PLANNING - Land and Environment Court - Class 3 - valuation - procedure - notice of motion - subpoena - objection to production of documents or things - legal professional privilege - dominant purpose - access granted to some documents

Tiffany & Co (Australia) Pty Limited v Sydney Metro [2019] NSWLEC 147

Sutherland Shire Council v Perdikaris [2019] NSWLEC 149

CIVIL ENFORCEMENT: construction of a large garage on a concrete slab in a suburban neighbourhood absent necessary consent – whether garage and slab should be demolished – consideration of discretionary factors to grant relief sought – declaratory relief and demolition ordered.

Sutherland Shire Council v Perdikaris [2019] NSWLEC 149

Dexus Funds Management Limited v The Council of the City of Sydney [2019] NSWLEC 1483

DEVELOPMENT APPEAL – design excellence – application of development control plan – street awning – opportunity site floor space – pedestrian amenity and weather protection – central Sydney

Dexus Funds Management Limited v The Council of the City of Sydney [2019] NSWLEC 1483

Port Macquarie-Hastings Council v Waite [2019] NSWLEC 146

CRIMINAL OFFENCES: voir dire as to the admissibility of a record of interview in criminal proceedings – whether evidence inadmissible by reason of a failure of the council to advise the accused of his privilege against self-incrimination as required under statute – whether accused required to answer questions or whether interview voluntary. EVIDENCE: whether record of interview was illegally or improperly obtained – whether admissions contained in record of interview should be excluded on discretionary grounds.

Port Macquarie-Hastings Council v Waite [2019] NSWLEC 146

This publication does not deal with every important topic or change in law and is not intended to be relied upon as a substitute for legal or other advice that may be relevant to the reader's specific circumstances. If you have found this publication of interest and would like to know more or wish to obtain legal advice relevant to your circumstances please contact one of the named individuals listed.

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