Developer’s four-year fight to build small seniors’ housing project in Newport, Sydney, drags on

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Crystal Apartments’ four-year fight to build a seniors housing facility near Crystal Bay in Newport, 31km north of Sydney’s CBD, continues.

The fight goes to the essence of whether councils want seniors housing at all.

Crystal Apartments sought planning permission to build eight two-bedroom units for seniors’ housing in 2017. When council objected, the proposal went to the NSW Government in 2018.

After the NSW Government’s Sydney North Planning Panel determined Northern Beaches Council should rezone the land to allow the redevelopment of four residential building blocks into one seniors living complex, the council has voted to write to NSW Planning and Public Spaces Minister Rob Stokes asking him to veto the proposal.

“It is inconsistent with the North District Plan, Council’s Local Strategic Statement and our Local Housing Strategy; it is out of character with the surrounding locality, and it doesn’t provide affordable housing according to council’s requirements,” said Northern Beaches Council CEO Ray Brownlee.

“As such, it could create an unwanted precedent for the assessment of future planning proposals as it does not have strategic or site-specific merit.”