HomeBreaking NewsWest End residents threaten legal action against 16-storey tower

West End residents threaten legal action against 16-storey tower

Summary

Residents are fighting developer Greaton’s plans to build a 16-storey apartment building next to the existing West Franklin and Altitude Apartments near the corner of Franklin and Morphett streets.The dispute centres on a 2014 land management agreement – signed between the Adelaide City Council and Greaton’s subsidiary Zhengtang – which residents say prevents buildings taller than 30m on the block, part of the redevelopment of the old Balfours bakery site.Greaton disputes this interpretation, according to advice the council says it has received from the firm, which is also building the GPO hotel.Nearly 400 residents, investors and tenants in the West Franklin and Altitude Apartments have petitioned council calling on it to enforce the land management agreement, arguing increasing the maximum height to 53m would have “dire consequences to owners and residents”.“This appears to be a pure money grab by on the side of the developer to make more money,” Ross McPherson wrote in a March 5 letter to Lord Mayor Sandy Verschoor, on behalf of the community corporations.“If the current LMA … is amended to support the developer’s increased height request, the owners of the property within the precinct, who will be impacted by the decision, will have no option but to lodge a class-action lawsuit”In the petition they warn any increase in height would: SUBSTANTIALLY erode property prices of existing apartment owners;DECREASE the amenity and quality of life for residents and;DAMAGE the reputation of the city as an “ideal place to live and invest”.Mr McPherson wrote that it was residents’ belief that any change to the “legally binding” LMA would set a “new precedent that would have negative ramifications for prospective purchases of property in South Australia and perhaps even nationally”.His wife Shirley said the issue could be a “landmark case” for the city.The state’s planning authority refused the The Loft project in March 2021 citing in part the presence of the LMA “which seeks to limit the maximum building height”.Greaton successfully appealed the decision to the Environment Resources and Development Court, which approved the project in September.“Greaton’s position is that the heights stipulated within the LMA should be read as minimum heights and not maximum heights,” according to a council report to elected members in February.“Any further action in relation to this matter will now require a careful consideration from the council, whether to accept the developer’s interpretation of the LMA or not accept their position.”The council will consider the LMA and development at an April 5 meeting. [email protected]

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