On 10 August 2017, we provided our first in a series of e-alerts regarding difficulties with the implementation of the new Planning Act 2016 (Planning Act) and the Planning Regulation 2017 (Regulation). As at the date of our previous e-alert, a development application for a material change of use for a sensitive use or a commercial use involving an accessible underground facility on land that is listed on the Environmental Management Register (EMR) or Contaminated Land Register (CLR) was prohibited development so that a development application could not be made, where:
- The premises were not currently being used for a sensitive land use; and
- A site suitability statement verifying that the premises are suitable for the proposed use had not been issued for the land.
On 6 October 2017, amending legislation changed that position.
The Planning (Contaminated Land) Amendment Regulation 2017 (Amending Regulation) makes changes to the Regulation, the effect of which is that an application for the development of sensitive uses or commercial uses that involve an accessible underground facility on land that is listed on the EMR or CLR can be made irrespective of the current land use or whether the land has been remediated or a site suitability statement has issued for the land.
These changes will rectify the uncommercial position under the Regulation whereby a developer would have been required to either remediate or validate contaminated land prior to securing a development approval for the proposal.
This article was written by Kelly Alcorn, Partner, Peter Bittner, Partner and Patrick Byrne, Solicitor.