Lennox developer takes Ballina Council to court

CONTROVERSIAL developer Chris Condon is taking Ballina Shire Council to court for not approving one of his Lennox Head developments.

Mr Condon wants to develop a 16 to 18-lot residential subdivision in the Greenwood Grove Estate, off Greenfield Road at Lennox Head.

But despite giving Mr Condon approval to create the allotments five years ago, the council has knocked back his application to develop on them.

Regulatory Services Group Manager Rod Willis said the application did not meet the requirements of the council's development control plan. However, Mr Condon said the reasons the council had given would 'not stand up' in the Land and Environment Court.

“I'm very confident this will be resolved, if not by negotiations with the council, then in the courts,” Mr Condon said.

The original development application was for an 18-lot residential subdivision in the Greenwood Grove Estate, including three larger lots with a total area of 22,000sqm, lodged with the council in 2003.

Mr Condon received approval for the project, including three larger lots with a proposed yield of one lot per 1200sqm, subject to some deferred commencement conditions.

Mr Condon said that in 2005 the council then reneged on its approval for the larger lots, but Mr Willis said Mr Condon was never actually given approval to develop on them.

“It's a reasonably straight forward matter,” Mr Willis said.

“Mr Condon was looking to get approval for cluster housing...but the lot yield proposed in the application was too high and it did not meet the requirements of the development control plan.”

In 2007, Mr Condon lodged a fresh development application. But that was refused in February this year, and Mr Condon has since instigated a Class 1 Land and Environment Court action, which is an environmental planning and protection appeal.

The matter went to a confidential session of last week's Ballina Shire Council meeting, where Mr Condon said he had offered to reduce the number of lots in his proposed subdivision from 18 to 16.

However, the council did not take up his offer, resulting in Mr Condon continuing court proceedings.

The matter was mentioned in the Land and Environment Court on Monday, where the registrar ordered the applicant provide amended plans to the council by September 9.

The matter was stood over for a telephone call-over scheduled for September 15, and the council is required to assess the amended plans and advise the court of its attitude towards those plans before that time.



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