A DEVELOPER is fighting Casey Council’s refusal of a 12 double-storey house development on the banks of a Berwick Springs floodplain.
The site 75S Moondarra Drive is on the west side of the drive, between houses to the east and the wetlands, which is part of the Melbourne Water-controlled Ti Tree Creek retarding basin.
Casey Council refused the development in April, primarily due to the objection of Melbourne Water.
Among the water authority’s criticisms was the reduction in the retarding basin’s flood storage capacity due to the development’s inadequate setback.
The council also noted that the site was subject to Aboriginal cultural heritage, but the developer Grandrise failed to lodge an Aboriginal cultural heritage plan.
Grandrise has since lodged an objection to the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal.
In a preliminary hearing this month, the tribunal’s member Susan Whitney adjourned on the question of whether an Aboriginal cultural heritage management plan was required.
“It was not in dispute that the proposal to construct 12 dwellings on the subject land triggered the requirement to prepare a (plan) as the subject land is within an area of cultural heritage sensitivity and the activity is deemed to be a high impact activity,” Ms Whitney noted.
Ms Whitney ruled Grandrise couldn’t rely on an earlier archaeological survey of a larger tract of land – that includes 75S Moondarra Drive – to be exempt from lodging the cultural heritage plan.
She adjourned the hearing to allow Grandrise to decide on whether to pursue its opposition to the cultural heritage plan on the basis of alleged “significant ground disturbance” on the site.
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