Liability of directors and managers for false information provided to the Environment Protection Authority
The NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) has stepped up its monitoring and enforcement of laws relating to the accuracy of information provided to it by licence holders.
Sydney councils accused of using interim heritage orders to halt development
A number of Sydney councils have recently been accused of imposing interim heritage orders in order to control development and block higher density housing in well-established suburbs. Partner, Helen Macfarlane, has been quoted in a recent Sydney Morning Herald article outlining the impact of this trend, which she says has ‘become a form of de facto development control’.
Determining land value - the "unwieldy complexity" of section 6A of the Valuation of Land Act 1916
With the recent changes in the property market, land owners and developers should consider carefully their land valuation assessments issued by the Valuer-General and consider whether to object to the land value determination.
Clause 4.6 variation requests: ensuring satisfaction post Initial Action
Developers proposing to carry out development that breaches a development standard in an environmental planning instrument (EPI), such as the maximum height, maximum floor space ratio or minimum lot size, need to be aware of the recent strict approach to clause 4.6 variation requests taken by consent authorities, including the Land and Environment Court, following the decision of Preston CJ in Initial Action Pty Ltd v Woollahra Municipal Council (Initial Action).
Interim Heritage Orders - when can they be made and what effect do they have on development
Landowners, developers and purchasers of property need to be aware of the increased use by many Sydney councils of their power to make an interim heritage order (IHO) over an item that the council considers may, on further inquiry or investigation, be found to be of local heritage significance, and is being or is likely to be harmed.
The effect of the making of an IHO over a property can and often does restrict and limit development plans for the property.3
Easements of Necessity - Why developers need to be careful relying on access from an adjoining property
A recent decision of the Land and Environment Court (Court) is a reminder to developers that they cannot assume that an order for an easement of necessity, such as a right of carriageway, will be made by a judge of the Court
New Educational Establishments State Planning Policy: significant changes to the planning approval pathways for private schools in New South Wales
Existing private schools that are registered non-government schools under the Education Act 1990 (NSW) can now carry out many forms of development without the need to lodge a development application with the local council.
This is Sirius: Undue financial hardship as a basis for opposing the proposed listing of a property on the NSW State Heritage Register
Landowners and developers need to be aware of the meaning of the phrase “undue financial hardship” as a basis for opposing the listing of their property on the NSW State Heritage Register (SHR).
Short-term rental accommodation: Airbnb and Stayz are likely to stay but the party house is over
Amendments are proposed by the New South Wales Government to a number of environmental planning instruments to permit and regulate short-term rental accommodation of dwellings (STRA).
Strata Renewal Plans and Strata Renewal Proposals – Will the redevelopment of redundant apartment buildings be more achievable for owners and developers?
The Strata Schemes Development Act 2015 that commenced on 30 November 2016 offers significant benefits to the development industry by way of a new process that enables lot owners to end outdated strata schemes for sale or redevelopment purposes.
NSW Planning Reform: A new world order?
Developers should be prepared for a potential new planning world order as the draft Environmental Planning and Assessment Amendment Bill 2017 (the Draft Bill) is released for public consultation.
Construction Certificate not Invalid if it is Inconsistent with the Relevant Development Consent
Approved construction certificate drawings that are inconsistent with the relevant development consent drawing do not render the construction certificate invalid, according to the New South Wales Court of Appeal.
Section 149 planning certificates: Shifting Sands
Councils are currently required to include in section 149 planning certificates (Planning Certificates) information about whether or not the land is affected by a council or public authority policy that restricts development on the property because of the likelihood of risks such as coastal erosion and tidal inundation.
Proposed changes to State Environmental Planning Policy No 65—Design Quality of Residential Flat Development (SEPP 65) and Residential Flat Design Code may affect current development applications
Developers should consider seeking legal advice as to how the proposed changes to SEPP 65 and the new draft Apartment Design Guide may affect any current development applications they may have.
'Easements of Necessity' – When the Land and Environment Court may be the more appropriate forum
Developers need to consider carefully the most appropriate Court to apply for an order for an easement of necessity. Failure to do so can cause delays and incur further costs even if the easement is granted by the Court.