Council back at court over controversial Mount Annan terrace home proposal

Controversial plan: The court proceedings attracted a large group of representatives from both the council and the developer.
Controversial plan: The court proceedings attracted a large group of representatives from both the council and the developer.

The final decision on a proposed 139 terrace home precinct in Mount Annan is expected to be made this week.

The site's developers, the Sunland Group, are fighting Camden Council in the Land and Environment Court for the right to build the controversial housing development at the Main Street block.

Land and Environment Court commissioner Jenny Smithson visited the site today to hear from local residents, view the site and commence the court proceedings.

Commissioner Smithson said she had reviewed all of the evidence of the case.

"There were over 400 pages of written submissions and I have read them all," she told court attendees.

"I will hear people speak and then I will take a quick tour of the site."

This is not the first time the controversial site, adjacent to Mount Annan Market Place, has landed the council in the Land and Environment Court.

The block of land, now owned by Sunland, was previously owned by Dyldam Group Projects Pty Ltd.

Dyldam submitted an application in 2014 to build nine, four-storey precincts that would house 256 units, a 550 space car park and off-street parking.

Residents and the council strongly opposed the development due to traffic, noise and parking concerns.

The fight ended up in the Land and Environment Court where the case was ruled in council's favour.

Harrington Park resident Robert Jackson said he had been involved with the fight against "over-development" of the site since 2014.

He said traffic, noise and parking were still of huge concern.

"We are an intelligent and engaged community so we understand that this is a prime piece of real estate and the developer is looking for a decent return on his investment," he said.

"However it came as no surprise that the changes the [Sunland Group] made to their original proposal were superfluous.

"This development does not suit the character of the area that we have all worked together to build over the past 20 or 30 years.

"We just want an outcome that is in keeping with the neighbourhood that we have worked so hard to establish."

Sunland Group purchased the 5.5 hectare greenfield site in November 2016.

The developers proposal, to be called Montaine Residences, will be made up of 139 three-bedroom terrace homes within walking distance of a central park.

Sunland managing director Sahba Abedian told the Advertiser last year the proposal represented a sensitive and respectful planning approach, where leading architecture was combined with landscape design.

However Mount Annan resident Jeanette French said the development proposed significant safety and health risks for residents.

"There are 14 units proposed for behind the shopping centre," she said.

"That is where the trucks do their deliveries at all hours of the day and night - that is not a good environment for anyone to live in.

"I am also concerned about children walking to the leisure centre and the park by crossing such busy roads with the increased traffic generated from the site."

Fellow Mount Annan resident Brett Lyons told the court that the overall size of the development was inappropriate for the site.

"It is an over-development of the site that will not blend in with the rest of the suburb," he said.

"It will have a large impact on traffic flow of the area - especially if the entrance to the site is on Holdsworth Drive."

Camden Council's solicitor Dennis Loether said a final decision was likely to be made in coming days.

The case is listed in the Land and Environment Court, Macquarie Street, Sydney for the next two days.