Council rejects proposed changes to development of Marang Parklands under Voluntary Planning Agreement

The opening of hockey fields at Marang Parklands in 2018. Lyn Smith Sydney South Hockey Association president (left), Cr Michael Forshaw, Mark Speakman, Cr Carmelo Pesce and Cr Carol Provan. John Veage
The opening of hockey fields at Marang Parklands in 2018. Lyn Smith Sydney South Hockey Association president (left), Cr Michael Forshaw, Mark Speakman, Cr Carmelo Pesce and Cr Carol Provan. John Veage

Sutherland Shire Council has rejected an offer by sand mining company Breen Resources over the development of Marang Parklands at Greenhills Beach.

The details have not been revealed because the proposed changes, under a new or additional Voluntary Planning Agreement (VPA), were considered in a confidential session at the last council meeting.

The 91-hectare sport and recreation precinct is being developed under a 2010 VPA between the council and landowners, Breen and Frasers Property (formerly Australand).

The VPA allowed the sandmining companies to develop housing in what has become the suburb of Greenhills Beach in return for new sporting facilities and parkland.

A skate park was completed in late 2015, followed by two synthetic hockey fields in April 2018.

Provision of more playing fields and passive open space was due to be delivered by 2023.

The council made public its unanimous resolution after it dealt with the VPA offer at its May meeting.

The resolution said the council declined the Breen Resources' offer, dated May 7, 2021 and delegated chief executive Manjeet Grewal to commence a dispute resolution process, being mediation and / or determination by an independent expert.

Ms Grewal was also given the power to finalise negotiations "for a new VPA based on terms generally consistent with council's minimum requirements, as have previously been communicated to Breen Resources".

A council spokesman said later discussions were continuing "to negotiate the terms of an additional VPA between the two parties governing the future use and embellishment of the planned Marang Parklands".

"The current VPA has thus far enabled the first stages of the Marang Parklands development, delivering much valued community sports facilities including a skate park, two hockey fields and a football field with amenities," he said.

"Council remains committed to pursuing the best interests of local residents through ongoing negotiations with Breen Resources to ensure the next stages of works involving additional recreational space and sporting fields are also successfully delivered to a high standard within the next few years."

Breen Group director Tom Breen said, "The proposal is for a new VPA, which in part provides for enhanced parklands compared to that which were the object of the original VPA".

"Breen and council continue to be engaged in discussions and negotiations relating to this offer, and while this process is ongoing, it is premature for us to comment upon them".

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