A court appeal against the blocking of plans for a major development, on the Kurnell peninsula, including up to 2000 condominiums around Boat Harbour, has been dismissed.
Justice John Robson, in the NSW Land and Environment Court, found Holt family company Besmaw “has not made out any of its grounds of challenge”.
The judge ordered Besmaw to pay the costs of the respondent, the Department of Planning and Environment.
Besmaw lodged the appeal after the department refused last year to issue environmental requirements to advance a proposed $2 billion “integrated leisure, tourism, health, residential, and employment precinct”.
The proposed project included 2000 oceanfront apartments – described as condominiums – two hotels, a convention centre, private hospital, shopping centre and business park.
The court was asked to direct the department to order SEARS (secretary's environmental assessment requirements) and to declare the department’s determination the proposed condominiums and commercial land uses were not sufficiently related to the State Significant Development components of the project to be considered null and void.
The Holt family has owned the land, which includes Boat Harbour – Sydney’s only privately owned beach – for 150 years.
Extensive sand mining operations have been carried out for decades.
Mined sites are progressively being filled and levelled, ready for development.
The department’s view was that while residents in the condominiums might have use of the tourism resort facilities, the two components were not sufficiently related for the entire proposal to be classified as a State Significant Development.
Besmaw was invited by the department to exclude the condominiums from the proposal and resubmit plans, but instead opted to take court action.