ATO given the all-clear by Land and Environment Court

ATO Building artist impression

The Doma Group has been given the all-clear by the NSW Land and Environment Court to build the Australian Taxation Office on part of the former Gosford Public School land on the waterfront.

The Gosford Waterfront Alliance (GWA) had challenged the development in the Land and Environment Court based on arguments as to why the Joint Regional Planning Panel (JRPP) should not have approved the DA.

GWA’s legal arguments included that the proposed development had failed to meet planning requirements for parking, design excellence, lack of activated street frontage and under-use of the available height.

The NSW Land and Environment Court made its ruling on Friday, December 16, to allow Canberra-based Doma Group to build the ATO.

“As we feared during the proceedings, our substantial arguments were not enough to sway the judge, who reminded us that we could only object to the technicalities of the building, not the merits of its location,” said Ms Claire Braund, GWA President.

“The ruling means the prime waterfront site will now be occupied by a building that utilises half of the available height, has a non-activitated ground floor and is open for nine-to-five office workers on weekdays only,” Ms Braund said.

She stressed that the GWA had always supported the Federal Government decision to relocate an ATO to the Central Coast, but was opposed to the ‘quick and easy’ approach taken to its location.

“It makes absolutely no sense when there are so many empty and derelict sites in the CBD crying out for redevelopment,” Ms Braund said.

For the full story, including what GWA intends to do next and responses to the decision from Member for Robertson Ms Lucy Wicks and Senator Deborah O’Neill, see the next edition of Coast Community News, out on Thursday, January 12, 2017.

Media release, Dec 19, 2016, Gosford Waterfront Alliance. Coast Community News Online