Developers Lodge Appeal Against $3bn Showground Rejection


Developers responsible for the $3 billion Showground Station Precinct masterplan have lodged an appeal with the NSW Department of Planning and Environment.

The Showground Corporation’s proposal offered a sprawling masterplanned vision of the Castle Hill Showground precinct.

The proposal included 3600 homes, commercial space, more than 7000sq m of public open space, 5000sq m of public sporting fields, as well as access to Showground Metro Station.

Project director Joe Chiha said that while he was disappointed with council’s decision, he was hopeful an independent planning panel provided by the Greater Sydney Commission to assess appeals, would see the potential in his corporation’s proposal.

“We worked with Hills Council planners for three years to produce this proposal,” Chiha said.

“It ticks every box with community amenities, open space, public infrastructure and connectivity, housing for new home buyers and key workers, world-class design and much more.”

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Hills Shire Council decided to deny the masterplan on the grounds that the precinct’s controls were only rezoned by the State Government in December last year.
Showground Station Precinct masterplanImage: Showground Corporation

“It was disappointing that councillors still rejected the proposal, but not surprising.”

“I am confident however that the planning panel will see value in our master planned proposal which provides massive upgrades for local roads, total pedestrian connectivity with the metro rail station, 50,000sq m of open space, three parks and so much more.”

The proposal has had the support of the local community and attracted national and international interest at an official launch in April attended by the Minister for Planning Anthony Roberts.

Chiha touted the development as the largest single social responsibility commitment made by a private developer on private land in Australia.

Chiha will now dispute the council’s decision before the State Professional Planning Panel.

“We are now in the hands of the independent panel,” Chiha said.

“It is believed this panel will review the proposal in the next few months.”

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