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Planning, Environment & Sustainability

With dedicated teams in Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland, who also work nationally together, we deal with state and Commonwealth laws in their commercial and practical context to deliver outstanding results and client service.

Planning, Environment & Sustainability

Our hands-on experience gained working both with and within planning authorities, coupled with our work for the private sector, enables us to provide practical, strategic and knowledgeable advice in relation to environmental, planning and regulatory issues.

Expertise

We act for local councils, developers, institutional and other owners, investors, financiers, construction companies, energy and utility and other infrastructure providers, resource companies, government departments and agencies, including the New South Wales Department of Planning, consultants and others involved in the development, management and regulation of property, natural resources and infrastructure projects. We also have a strong reputation in connection with transactional issues, advocacy and mediation.

Our expertise includes:

  • green buildings and infrastructure
  • energy efficiency and renewable energy
  • emissions reporting and trading
  • obtaining, defending and challenging consents, permits, licences and other approvals
  • navigating planning controls and other regulatory requirements and addressing assessment criteria procedures, including the preparation of applications and environmental assessments supporting those applications
  • drafting environmental planning instruments, planning agreements and other planning documentation and statutory interpretation
  • allocation of risk and liability in connection with the acquisition disposal and development of land, including contaminated sites
  • pollution incidents
  • environmental and planning and other prosecutions
  • environmental compliance and due diligence
  • management and remediation of contaminated land
  • environmental risk assessment
  • biodiversity
  • waste management
  • tribunal and court proceedings, including merit appeals and legal challenges, and alternate dispute resolution
  • resumptions, land compensation and the valuation of land
  • heritage laws
  • native vegetation and threatened species legislation
  • the law and practice of government administration
  • other areas of the law concerning the use, development and management of land and resources and the carrying out of infrastructure projects.

Experience

Victoria

  • acting for the owner of a major site in which our client successfully rezoned its land through the Planning Panel process to the Mixed Use Zone to facilitate a major mixed use residential development. The matter involved complex planning issues in relation to heritage, building height and mass, public open space, traffic, community objection and setbacks to the Yarra River
  • acting for a metropolitan council in proceedings at VCAT with respect to the conversion of a former hotel to a multiunit residential development
  • acting for a regional council in numerous proceedings at VCAT including conditions appeals, declaration proceedings, and planning enforcement proceedings
  • acting for the permit applicant in proceedings before VCAT for a $150 million hotel and apartment development at St Kilda Road. The permit was successfully secured through the compulsory conference process
  • acting for ISPT in an appeal to the Heritage Council of Victoria with respect to heritage issues at the former General Post Office building.

Recent environmental experience

  • acting as solicitor advocates for Metropolitan Waste and Resource Recovery Group in proceedings before VCAT regarding the Melbourne Regional Landfill and also the Werribee Landfill
  • acting for St Andrews Golf Club in various proceedings relating to groundwater issues involving Peninsula Hot Springs and Southern Rural Water.

Recent transactional experience

  • acting for VicRoads in the preparation of section 173 agreements for Growth Areas Infrastructure Contribution (GAIC) work in kind arrangements
  • Providing GAIC advice to a major residential developer with respect to strategies to reduce and defer GAIC payable.
Chris Lovell

Chris Lovell

Chairman

Melbourne

More info
Gerard Timbs

Gerard Timbs

Partner

Brisbane

More info

Recent Posts

10 December 2018 - Knowledge

Inside track: Planning, Environment & Sustainability

#Planning, Environment & Sustainability

Huge renewable energy resources have been identified across Australia, but planning is lagging to develop a grid network suitable for the transformation that gives certainty to stakeholders.

27 November 2018 - Knowledge

ALP alternatives to the National Energy Guarantee

#Construction & Infrastructure, #Planning, Environment & Sustainability

The Australian Labor Party (ALP) has announced a range of renewables policies which it intends to take to the Federal election outside of the NEG.

27 November 2018 - Knowledge

Tougher penalties for asbestos waste offences

#Planning, Environment & Sustainability

Asbestos dumpers will soon be hit with significantly increased fines following the passing of new laws last week. Under the measures, that clarify and strengthen the existing provisions, penalties for waste offences involving asbestos will jump from $250,000 to $500,000 for individuals and from $1 million to $2 million for corporations. We outline the key aspects of the new laws and the impetus behind them.

27 November 2018 - Knowledge

Inside track: Planning, Environment & Sustainability

#Planning, Environment & Sustainability

The congestion on our streets from bikes, dockless bikes, scooters, e-scooters, e-bikes, EV-charging, and even people are making our kerb-side a battleground. We need to think smarter about how these increasing and competing channels can all access the veins of our city.

19 November 2018 - Knowledge

Victorian state election: Stark energy policy positions

#Construction & Infrastructure, #Planning, Environment & Sustainability

We take a brief look at the major parties’ different positions on energy in the lead up to the state election.

15 November 2018 - Knowledge

Preparing clause 4.6 requests to vary development standards: An applicant’s guide

#Planning, Environment & Sustainability

This article reflects on recent cases and provides a practical guide on how to prepare a clause 4.6 Request to vary development standards

12 November 2018 - Knowledge

Inside track: Planning, Environment & Sustainability

#Planning, Environment & Sustainability

Australian company directors nominate climate change as the number one issue they want the government to address in the long-term, in a survey of more than 1,200 business leaders.

12 November 2018 - Knowledge

Key cases: Planning, environment & sustainability

#Planning, Environment & Sustainability

In this article, we summarise the key issues in three recent cases before VCAT and the Supreme Court relating to demolition of heritage buildings, DELWP approval of a kangaroo cull, and a loss on sale claim brought after the owner had passed away.

30 October 2018 - Knowledge

Inside track: Planning, Environment & Sustainability

#Planning, Environment & Sustainability

The CEFC is committing up to $90 million towards Australia’s first large-scale energy from waste (EfW) project – a state-of-the-art plant at Kwinana in Western Australia capable of producing 36MW of electricity, enough to power up to 50,000 homes.

15 October 2018 - Knowledge

Inside track: Planning & Environment

#Planning, Environment & Sustainability

Off-the-plan apartment buyers are being hit with the double-whammy of tougher home loan rules and falling property prices, leaving many struggling to complete their purchases.

03 October 2018 - Knowledge

What's News in Planning & Environment? – 3 October 2018

#Planning, Environment & Sustainability

The Planning Institute of Australia (PIA) has strongly endorsed a federal parliamentary inquiry’s call for the development of a national plan of settlement to help guide the growth of Australia’s cities and regions.

02 October 2018 - Knowledge

Landlords beware: Approved uses

#Planning, Environment & Sustainability

Often the permitted uses under leases require a development approval authorising the specific use. This article explains the issue and the risks associated with entering into leases for a permitted use without the appropriate development approval.