There was some very positive commentary on Council’s centres network and hierarchy, with the Court finding the proposal out-of-centre in terms of the network in the planning scheme.
The Court said the proposal was for a use inconsistent with the outcomes sought in the Residential Medium Density Zone and constituted undesirable development unlikely to be approved.
Judge Rackemann held that the level of public or community need was relatively modest and insufficient to warrant approval in the circumstances of this case, particularly given the proposal’s likely impacts on other centres.
In relation to Woolworths’ initial non-disclosure of its previous interest in the Glode land, Judge Rackemann described Woolworth’s approach as “lamentable”. Judge Rackemann “especially” preferred the evidence of Jon Norling in relation to the likely impact that the proposal would have on other centres. His Honour found that “the likely impact of the proposal on the existing centre and its effect is best described as compromising rather than within the bounds of normal competition. It is, I am satisfied, beyond the bounds of acceptability.”
Tim Stork (with E Morzone QC) appeared for the respondent, instructed by Corrs Chambers Westgarth.
The judgment is published here.