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April 20, 2024

Council wins in court – large Suffolk Park DA refused

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According to www.denwol.com.au, Denwol is owned and controlled by Phillip Wolanski AM.
Photo realestate.com.au

A large mixed-use Suffolk Park DA proposed by Sydney-based property development company Denwol has been rejected in the Land & Environment Court after mediation failed.

The judgement, available at www.caselaw.nsw.gov.au, shows that Denwol made multiple attempts to amend the Clifford Street DA behind closed doors, but were unsuccessful in brokering an agreement. 

Denwol commenced Class 1 proceedings on September 9, 2022, appealing against Council’s refusal. 

Locals said that the DA is an overdevelopment of the site that will lead to further gridlock of roads and is not in line with the character of the area.

Council’s refusal was based in part on the DA having, ‘a serious and irreversible impact on biodiversity values’ and failing ‘to incorporate sufficient measures to avoid or minimise adverse impacts on biodiversity values’. 

Those impacts included retaining ‘an insufficient portion of the existing vegetation which forms part of the Coastal Cypress Pine Forest in the NSW North Coast Bioregion Endangered Ecological Community (EEC) Cypress Pine’. 

‘Further, there is uncertainty of the viability of the trees proposed for retention’.

In December last year, the Suffolk Park Progress Association (SPPA) appealed to councillors to be more engaged with the court process. 

SPPA president, Donald Maughan, told Council at the time, ‘Our Suffolk Park community’s concerns relating to the Land and Environment Court cases are validated by the way the West Byron development went in that same court’. 

‘Decisions were made by staff on advice from Council’s external solicitors, with none of our elected councillors at the table. 

‘That outcome left community with a feeling of capitulation and no representation in the process’. 

Conclusion 

With the Denwol case, D Dickson, Commissioner of the Court, found in conclusion that, ‘The likely impacts of the development are unacceptable on merit’.

Among her reasons for refusal, Dickson writes, ‘the applicant has failed to demonstrate in the Biodiversity Development Assessment Report (BDAR) sufficient or appropriate measures to avoid, minimise or mitigate impacts on Coastal Cypress EEC that will arise from the proposed development of the subject site.

‘Pursuant to s 7.16(2) of the BC Act, given the finding that the proposed development is likely to have a serious and irreversible impacts on the Coastal Cypress EEC, the consent authority must refuse consent’.


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