North Sydney Council

Brenham v North Sydney Council

The Applicant in this matter, Brenham Pty Ltd is a family owned child care operator, with centres in Southern Sydney and the Inner City suburbs.

An application was made with North Sydney Council to convert a dilapidated State heritage listed building, Tarella into a day care centre. The team at Hones Lawyers were engaged following initial negative comments from the Council and significant resident backlash to the proposal.

The matter was complex with the engagement of consultants in the areas of:

• Architecture;
• Heritage;
Town Planning;
• Landscape Architecture;
• Traffic;
• BCA Compliance;
• Acoustics; and
• Childcare Regulation and Operation.

Each of these experts were necessary to address the raft of contentions that the Council raised in the proceedings.

The matter proceeded, as is the usual course, along a path leading to a conciliation conference. Regrettably, the conciliation conference did not result in the Council being convinced that the application should be approved. Consequently, the s34 conciliation was terminated and the matter proceeded to a contested hearing. Ultimately, the matter was heard over 3 days with the Court accepting that the application was one that ought to be approved and gave the Applicant the ability to mould its design to address items that had been raised in the Court’s judgement.

The matter was highly technical and fiercely fought, as evidenced by the number of consultants engaged and the length of time that it took to obtain the approval (this was a matter that progressed over a 12 month period, which included informal mediation conferences with the Council outside of the usual s34 regime).

Ultimately, the matter was approved and our successful clients are now in the process of obtaining their approval from the Heritage Office and thereafter, their construction certificate for commencement of their works. We expect that the new centre located at 3 Amherst Street, Cammeray will be open for enrolment sometime early in 2017.

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