Community Group File Legal Action Against Crown Barangaroo

It looks like there will be yet another delay for the grand opening of the new high-roller casino in Sydney. Originally slated to open in 2019, the grand opening was pushed back to 2021 due to some planning complications. Now, the project will be further postponed as legal action has been brought against the approval of Crown Barangaroo.

The Environmental Defender’s Office (EDO) is representing a community group called the Millers Point Fund incorporated, who believe that the Planning Assessment Commission made significant errors when approving the casino. The PAC cited the Casino Control Act 2013, which stated that a casino could be built on the foreshore; however, this was not the legislation that should have come into consideration during the planning of the casino.

Years before the Casino Control Act, city planners decided that the foreshore would be made into a public park. While the PAC has required Crown Barangaroo to allow for more green space in the area and public access to the waterfront, the EDO argues that the entire approval is invalid.

“Its decision to approve the latest modification to the concept plan and approve the actual construction of the project is invalid and of no effect,” says EDO Chief Executive Sue Higgins. “we are saying the Casino Control Act doesn’t dictate the planning decisions that are made in NSW. In fact, the PAC really is required to make a decision about where a casino can and cannot be built based on planning law”.

So, it may be back to the drawing board for Crown Barangaroo if the EDO is successful. However, the casino operator has stated that it will defend itself vigorously during these legal proceedings, which are set to begin later this month.