An inquiry into the controversial Barangaroo development would be the first test of an incoming Liberal Government’s promise to establish an independent planning commission, Australians for Sustainable Development (AfSD) said today.
The NSW Labor Government used the ‘hated’ Part 3A state significant planning laws to discard the winning design for Barangaroo and allow Lend Lease to draw up plans to effectively sub-divide Sydney Harbour, over develop the shoreline and avoid laws to properly deal with contamination.
AfSD spokesperson and Sydney Deputy Lord Mayor, Marcelle Hoff called on an incoming Liberal Government to commit to a Commission of Inquiry into Barangaroo to avoid inheriting the toxic legacy of Labor’s decisions over the controversial development.
“What gets built at Barangaroo will forever alter Sydney’s skyline and the shores of Sydney Harbour. An independent planning commission must make Barangaroo its first priority as bad development will only damage Sydney’s reputation as a beautiful harbour city.”
Ms Hoff said the controversy surrounding Lend Lease’s proposal for Barangaroo now represents the “stench of planning law abuses in NSW under Labor”.
“The Labor Government secretly approved the Barangaroo development in the hours before it assumed caretaker mode and the Planning Minister gave the green light despite overwhelming community concerns about the scale of the development and risk of contamination,” Ms Hoff added.
“We now know that the Minister made that decision in a way calculated to avoid legal review and silence the voices of communities around the harbour who are concerned about the impact of this inappropriate development”.
“The NSW Labor Government has demonstrated complete disrespect for both the court system and accepted parliamentary conventions governing elections in Australia. This ultimately shows complete disrespect for the people of NSW,” Cr Hoff said.
“An incoming Liberal Government has the opportunity to regain community confidence over planning decisions in NSW. However, it must take swift action over Labor’s abuses of planning laws if it is to live up to its promise of reform.”
Media enquiries: Natasha Webb, 0410 729 594
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