Independent Hearing and Assessment Panel Meeting

4 August 2015, 5:00pm



Notice of Meeting


Dear Panel Members,


Notice is given of the Independent Hearing and Assessment Panel Meeting, to be held in the Council Chambers, 48 Longueville Road Lane Cove on Tuesday 4 August 2015 commencing at 5:00pm. The business to be transacted at the meeting is included in this business paper.


Yours faithfully





Craig Wrightson

General Manager


IHAP Meeting Procedures


The Independent Hearing and Assessment Panel (IHAP) meeting is chaired by The Hon David Lloyd QC. The meetings and other procedures of the Panel will be undertaken in accordance with the Lane Cove Independent Hearing & Assessment Panel Charter and any guidelines issued by the General Manager.

The order of business is listed in the Agenda on the next page. That order will be followed unless the Panel resolves to modify the order at the meeting. This may occur for example where the members of the public in attendance are interested in specific items on the agenda.

Members of the public may address the Panel for a maximum of 3 minutes during the public forum which is held at the beginning of the meeting. All persons wishing to address the Panel must register prior to the meeting by contacting Council’s Office Manager – Environmental Services on 9911 3611. Speakers must address the Chair and speakers and Panel Members will not enter into general debate or ask questions during this forum. Where there are a large number of objectors with a common interest, the Panel may, in its absolute discretion, hear a representative of those persons.

Following the conclusion of the public forum the Panel will convene in closed session to conduct deliberations and make decisions. The Panel will announce each decision separately after deliberations on that item have concluded. Furthermore the Panel may close part of a meeting to the public in order to protect commercial information of a confidential nature.

Minutes of IHAP meetings are published on Council’s website www.lanecove.nsw.gov.au by 5pm on the Friday following the meeting. If you have any enquiries or wish to obtain information in relation to IHAP, please contact Council’s Office Manager – Environmental Services on 9911 3611.

Please note meetings held in the Council Chambers are Webcast. Webcasting allows the community to view proceedings from a computer without the need to attend the meeting. The webcast will include vision and audio of members of the public that speak during the Public Forum. Please ensure while speaking to the Panel that you are respectful to other people and use appropriate language. Lane Cove Council accepts no liability for any defamatory or offensive remarks made during the course of these meetings.

The audio from these meetings is also recorded for the purposes of verifying the accuracy of the minutes and the recordings are not disclosed to any third party under the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009, except as allowed under section 18(1) or section 19(1) of the PPIP Act, or where Council is compelled to do so by court order, warrant or subpoena or by any other legislation.




Independent Hearing and Assessment Panel 4 August 2015













Officer Reports for Determination


2.      Greenwich Baths  


Orders Of The Day






Independent Hearing and Assessment Panel Meeting 4 August 2015

Greenwich Baths



Subject:          Greenwich Baths    

Record No:     DA15/64-01 - 39508/15

Division:         Environmental Services Division

Author(s):       May Li 



Property:           Greenwich Baths at:-

·        317 Albert Street, Greenwich (Lot 825, DP 752067),

·        317A Albert, Greenwich (Lot 1122, DP 752067),

·        317B Albert Street, Greenwich (Lot 1123, DP 752067) and

·        End of Richard Street, Greenwich (Lot 1, DP 182910).

DA No:              DA 64/2015

Date Lodged:    22 May 2015

Cost of Work:    $100

Owner:              Crown Land and NSW Road and Maritime Service (RMS) Leased to Lane Cove Council and currently subleased to Bluefit Pty Ltd.

Applicant:          Todd McHardy – Bluefit Pty Ltd



Service of alcohol in conjunction with the current use being a public recreation area.


·          317 Albert Street (Lot 825, DP 752067), - Zone RE1 – Public Recreation.

·          317A Albert (Lot 1122, DP 752067), - Unzoned land

·          317B Albert Street (Lot 1123, DP 752067)- Unzoned land

·          End of Richard Street (Lot 1, DP 182910) - Unzoned land


Yes.  The proposal is consistent with the current use of the site being a public recreation area.  Clause 2.4 of the LEP states development may be carried out on unzoned land only with development consent. 


Yes.  Part of the site at end of Richard Street, Greenwich (Lot 0, DP 182910) is listed as a heritage item with local significance (Item No. 11). 

The proposal would have no adverse material impact on the existing structures and would not alter the current use on the site.


Yes, the site is located within Greenwich Conservation area.




Class: N/A


Yes – 25 days


The development proposal was notified in accordance with Council’s notification policy to nearby neighbours, Councillors, Greenwich Community Association Inc, and Lane Cove Bushland & Conservation Society.


244 notification letters were sent by Council. 




The development application is referred to Lane Cove Independent Hearing and Assessment Panel (IHAP) for a determination given the public interest expressed and Council is a stakeholder responsible for the care, control and management of the site.




The application seeks consent to sell alcohol at the Greenwich Baths between 12.00 noon and 11.00pm, Monday to Sunday excluding Good Friday, Christmas Day and prior to 11.00am on Anzac day.


In response to concerns raised during the assessment, the applicant submitted further information on 3 July 2015 confirming that it is their intention to only serve alcohol with food from midday to 30 minutes prior to closing time of the current hours of operation of the Baths.  Special event nights up to 12 times per year are being sought to be held until 11.00pm with the last serve of alcohol at 10.30pm on the night. 


The proposal is consistent with the current use of the site and is permissible in accordance with Lane Cove LEP 2009.  It is also consistent with the terms of the sublease of the land between Lane Cove Council and Bluefit Pty Ltd.


A significant number of submissions (75) have been received in response to the development proposal and a petition against.  The primary concern against is that the consumption of alcohol would not be suitable on the site given its proximity to water and nearby residential developments. 


27 submissions supported the proposal on the grounds that it would improve the range of services available at  the Baths. 


Greenwich Baths is a community resource and facility situated on the foreshore area of Greenwich.  The service of alcohol would provide a service currently not available within the Baths.  Any service of alcohol should be strictly controlled and be under the supervision of the Baths’ management.  A small scale alcohol service would encourage the continued use of Greenwich Baths by expanding available services and enhance the economic viability of the existing operation.


The application is recommended for approval for a 2 season (24 months) trial period subject to draft conditions.




Greenwich Baths is situated within the foreshore area of Lane Cove River.  It is adjacent to a public recreation area at the southern side of Albert Street and O’Connell Street.  Dwelling houses are located towards the western boundary of the Baths uphill on St Lawrence Street, Richard Street and Lower Serpentine Road.  The site is adjacent to RE1 – Public Recreation and R2 – Low Density Residential zones.   Notification Plan attached (AT-1).


Greenwich Baths provides visitors an opportunity to swim in Sydney Harbour with change room facilities.  A kiosk operates on the site serving snacks and meals to patrons from September to April.  The Baths are closed for the remainder of the year. 




The development application seeks consent for the service of alcohol in conjunction with the current Public Recreation use of the premises. 


The current hours of operation of the Baths are:-


September:     7.00am – 5.00pm

October:          7.00am – 6.00pm

November:      7.00am – 7.30pm

December:      7.00am – 8.00pm

January:          7.00am – 8.00pm

February:        7.00am – 7.30pm

March:             7.00am – 7.00pm

April:               7.00am – 5.00pm.


The applicant proposes to make beer and wine available for sale with food from 12.00 noon to 30 minutes before the normal closing hours.


The applicant also proposes a limited number, being up to 12 times per year, of special event nights till 11.00pm on the site.  Alcohol may be served on the special events, such as birthday parties, christenings, weddings, work gatherings or charity movie nights until 10.30pm, 30 minutes prior to the closing time of the special event, except Good Friday, Christmas day and prior to 11am on ANZAC day. 


All wine would be served in plastic wine glasses.  Any beer bottles and wine bottles would be placed in neoprene holders that cover the entire bottle, to ensure broken glass does not create a safety risk. 


No building works are included in the proposal.


The parking arrangement for the use of the Baths would remain unchanged. 




The land is partly owned by Roads and Maritime Services (RMS) and by Crown Lands.  The RMS land consists of 3,145sqm as shown on the below diagram (primarily water and the dressing rooms constructed below the mean high water mark). 


The RMS land is Lot 1, DP 182910 which is known as 0 Richard Street, Greenwich. 


The remaining portion of land within the Baths is Crown Lands being Lots 825, 1122 and 1123, DP 752067 known as 317, 317A and 317B Albert Street, Greenwich respectively. 





The primary lease (i.e. the lease between Council and RMS for the RMS portion of land) prohibits alcohol on RMS land. RMS advises alcoholic beverages not be consumed on the RMS portion of land.  Service and consumption of alcohol on the adjoining Crown Land would not be a breach of the lease terms and conditions.




Site zoning plans and aerial view attached (AT-2).


The operation of the Greenwich Baths is currently in accordance with the terms and conditions of the sublease between Lane Cove Council and Bluefit Pty Ltd.  The current lease commenced on   1 July 2014, for a period of 3 years and terminates on 30 June 2017.  Refer to Attachment 4 for a copy of the current lease (AT-3).


Clause 9.9 of the sublease states:-


The Lessee (Council) may, in its discretion and under strict supervision, permit the consumption of alcohol and alcoholic beverages within the Premises but does so at its own risk and subject to obtaining the relevant licenses from State Government Authorities and in accordance with any conditions imposed by the Council.”


Both RMS and Crown Lands have endorsed Council’s current lease with Bluefit raising no objection to the provision of alcohol on site.




Local Environmental Plan 2009


The subject site is identified as partly RE1-Public Recreation and partly Unzoned land in Lane Cove LEP 2009. 


Clause 2.4 of Lane Cove LEP 2009 indicates the relevant provisions of the LEP relating to a site within an unzoned parcel of land.

2.4       Unzoned Land

(1)  Development may be carried out on unzoned land only with development consent.


(2) In deciding whether to grant development consent, the consent authority:


(a)        must consider whether the development will impact on adjoining zoned land and, if so, consider the objectives for development in the zones of the adjoining land, and


(b) must be satisfied that the development is appropriate and is compatible with permissible land uses in any such adjoining land.



With reference to clause 2(a) above it is necessary to consider the objectives and the impact of the proposed development on the adjoining land RE1- Public Recreation zone.

The subject site is adjacent to RE1- Public Recreation zone to the north. The zone objectives of RE1 – Public Recreation zone are as follows:-

        To enable land to be used for public open space or recreational purposes.

        To provide a range of recreational settings and activities and compatible land uses.

        To protect and enhance the natural environment for recreational purposes.

        To make provision for rights of public access to more foreshore land and to link existing open space areas.




The proposal would enable the adjoining land towards the north, being a public recreation area, to continue to be used for public and recreation purposes. The proposal would continue to provide access to the existing natural environment for recreation purposes.   The existing public access to foreshore land and open spaces would remain unaltered. It is considered that the proposed development would not be contrary to the objectives of the zone of the land towards the north.

The subject site is adjacent R2 – Low Density Residential zone to the west. The zone objectives of R2 – Low Density Residential zone as follows:-

·           To enable other land uses that provides facilities or services to meet the day to day needs of residents.

·           To retain, and where appropriate improve, the existing residential amenity of a detached single family dwelling area.

·           To encourage new dwelling houses or extensions of existing dwelling houses that are not highly visible when viewed from the Lane Cove River or Parramatta River.

·       To ensure that landscaping is maintained and enhanced as a major element in the residential environment.




The proposed development would not alter the current use of subject site. Given the restrictions imposed it is considered that the proposed development is compatible with the zone objectives and would not unreasonably create an adverse impact upon adjoining properties towards the west. It is considered that the proposed development at Greenwich Baths, which includes a changing facilities and a snack kiosk, has been used for many years as a foreshore swimming facility and the current use is for the purpose of public recreation. It is considered that the proposed development is appropriate, would not be contrary to the objectives of the zone and is compatible with the adjoining permissible land uses.




Development consent from Council would be the first step in the process of obtaining a liquor license.  A separate application would need to be lodged with the NSW Independent Liquor and Gaming authority for a liquor license prior to operation.  The proposal would also be restricted to the conditions of the sublease between Lane Cove Council and Bluefit Pty Ltd.




The development proposal was notified in accordance with Council’s notification policy between 28 May 2015 and 19 June 2015.  Council sent 244 notification letters to the nearby residents, councilors, Greenwich Community Association Inc and Lane Cove Bushland and Conservation Society. 


The application was also notified in the Village Observer given the public nature of the Bath’s facility.  106 submissions and a petition with 19 signatures were received in response to the notification of the development proposal.  27 submissions supported the proposal and 79 submissions and a petition objected to the proposal. 


The issues raised in the submissions are summarised as follows.


Reasons for Supporting:


·        Bluefit has improved the services of the Baths since they took over the management of the site.


·        The team who runs the cafe and events is highly responsible.


·        It would be fantastic to be able to enjoy a quiet drink on the beach as the sun goes down.


·        This is a beautiful location for celebrations.


·        It would be lovely to have a glass of wine to accompany a lunch time picnic.


·        The venue would be a likely option for a birthday or Christmas gathering with friends.


·        It would be a fabulous addition to the service provided to patrons to be able to buy a glass of wine or beer to enjoy while sitting on the beach watching kids frolicking in the water, or to accompany the fabulous food they have on offer.


·        A liquor license would enhance the experience at Greenwich Baths and give the proprietors the opportunity to offer an increased range of activities appealing to a wider range of age groups (eg. family movie nights, twilight picnics, private functions).


·        Enhance the amenity provided by the Baths.


·        It would just provide a quiet relaxing venue to enjoy the beautiful bay.


·        It would be a great venue addition to our community.


·        It would be well and sensibly used by the local community.


·        Suitable restrictions should be placed under the responsible service of alcohol laws as a result of this special location.


·        There are no places to go out in the evening in Greenwich with friends.


·        This amenity would improve our social life in the summer time and make better use of a community asset.




The supporting submissions highlight the likely positive aspects of the proposal which would improve the range of services within this public recreation area and provide a service similar to many harbor and beach facilities.  The above comments are noted. 


The concerns raised against the proposal:


·        A number of submissions (Australian Medical Association) highlighted concern that alcohol and water based activities encourage risk taking behavior and call for a rejection of the proposal.




The above concerns are not normally associated with controlled environments and managed venues such as proposed.


·        Greenwich Baths are located on Crown Land.  The sale and consumption of alcoholic liquor is prohibited. 




Greenwich Baths is comprised of RMS land and Crown Land.  Alcohol is prohibited on the RMS portion of the land.  However, the consumption of alcohol and alcoholic beverages within Crown Land (being the dry land) is allowed under the current sublease conditions (Clause 9.9 of the sublease).


·        Inconsistent with Council’s designated free alcohol zone policy. 




The park adjacent to the Baths to the north is an alcohol free zone.  However, the proposed consumption of alcohol at the Baths would be served within an enclosed area under the supervision of the Baths management. 


·        No glass at harbour side Baths.




It is agreed that broken glass could be spread on the ground of the premises when bottles are broken.  Glass bottles should not be permitted outside the service area.  A condition requiring all alcohol being served with plastic glasses would be included in the draft conditions (Refer to draft condition 3).

·        There should be a trial then a reassessment of the community impact including parking, noise, waste, vandalism etc. 




Concerns have been raised regarding swimming safety, noise impact, traffic congestion, and insufficient car parking on nearby streets.  The Baths have operated for many years and over that time noise and traffic congestion has from time to time been part and parcel of the use.  It is not anticipated that the service would unreasonably increase external impacts to residents.


It is recommended that if development consent is granted it be for a 24 months trial period, two swimming seasons.  At the end of the trial period, the applicant may submit a separate development application to continue to serve alcohol at the Baths and the community have an opportunity to provide a feedback.  A trial would enable the community, the applicant and Lane Cove Council to observe how the proposal functions and enable adjustments to conditions such as hours of operation and if necessary not approve further use.


·        Noise impact




The consumption of alcohol with food during the normal hours of operation of the Baths would unlikely generate additional noise by current patrons of the Baths.  The noise impacts generated by the special events in late hours should be addressed by a Plan of Management including prohibiting music after 10.00pm.


·        Hours of operation




The current hours of operation of the Baths are under an agreement between Lane Cove Council and Bluefit Pty Ltd.  Clause 18 of the sublease requires the Baths to be opened every day including all public holidays (except for Christmas Day), for a minimum season, as directed by the Lessor (Lane Cove Council).


The current application does not seek for the amendments to the current hours of operation of the Baths which are:


September:          7.00am – 5.00pm

October:              7.00am – 6.00pm

November:           7.00am – 7.30pm

December:           7.00am – 8.00pm

January:              7.00am – 8.00pm

February:             7.00am – 7.30pm

March:                 7.00am – 7.00pm

April:                    7.00am – 5.00pm.


However it is proposed to hold a maximum of 12 special events annually consistent with the sublease conditions.


·        Traffic and parking




Patrons come to the Baths by car and use on street parking facility in the past.  The proposal is unlikely to intensify the use of the public recreation area and the street parking availability during the current hours of operation.  The service of alcohol would be ancillary to the existing operation of the Baths and no change to the current parking arrangement is considered necessary.


·        Waste management




The applicant advised that waste would be removed as per the current normal Council waste collection arrangement.  Waste for special events should be removed by a commercial waste contractor in a timely manner.




The community has raised concerns in support and opposition to the proposal development.  All submissions have been taken into consideration during the assessment of this valued and popular community facility.


Greenwich Baths is a unique public asset within the Lane Cove community.  Bluefit has promoted and expanded the public uses of the site including “nippers” programs on Sunday mornings, cinema nights since their lease of the Greenwich Baths.  The additional activities have increased the usage of the Baths particularly by younger members of the community and enhanced the viability and accessibility of the Baths as a public recreation area. 


The proposed service of alcohol on the site should be ancillary to its current use and would expand community use and benefit the public recreation facility.


Given the concerns raised by the community, it is recommended that the service of alcohol, as an additional provision to the existing services of the Baths, be approved on a trial period of 24 months  (2 seasons) from September 2015.





THAT pursuant to Section 80(1)(a) of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act, 1979, as amended, the Council grants development consent to Development Application DA 64/2015 for the sale of alcohol as part of the current use of the premises as a public recreation area on Lot 825, 1122, 1123, DP 752067 and known as Greenwich Bath at 317, 317A and 317B Albert Street, Greenwich subject to the following conditions:

1.      No alcohol shall be sold or consumed on the wet and sand areas. 

2.      In relation to the serving of Alcohol during special events:

(a)   A maximum of number of 12 special events is permitted annually.  Alcohol cannot be served after 10.30pm, 30 minutes prior to the event closing time at 11pm during these special events.

(b)   Special events dates are to be published on the Greenwich Baths’ website a minimum of 2 weeks prior.

(c)   A register of the special events including details of the dates, functions, estimated number of patrons, and any complaints received shall be kept and be available for Council inspection. 

(d)   No music shall be played on the premises after 10.00pm.

3.      In relation to the serving of Alcohol other than special events:

(a)   Alcohol shall only be served and consumed on the dry area as indicated to the north of the red line shown on the attached map.

(b)   All alcohol shall be served in non-glass containers

(c)   No unprotected bottles shall be allowed outside the serving area. 

(d)   Alcohol must be served with food.

(e)Alcohol may only be served from 12.00 noon to 30 minutes before the closing time of the hours of operation of the Baths.

4.      All staff serving alcohol must be qualified in the Responsible Service of Alcohol.

5.      Parents and carers with young children using the Baths must be alerted to the influence of alcohol when they purchase alcohol.  A notice must be clearly displayed at the counter of the alcohol serviced area. 

6.      Lifeguards must be on duty at all times during the hours of operation of the Baths and the special events.

7.      A Plan of Management adequately addressing all the above requirements must be submitted to Council for approval prior to the commencement of the service of alcohol on the premises. 

8.      The development consent is valid for 24 months from the date of the consent being issued.

9.      An application would be required if the applicant wishes to convert the service of alcohol at the premises to a permanent use.






Michael Mason

Executive Manager

Environmental Services Division




AT‑1 View

Neighbour Notification Plans

2 Pages


AT‑2 View

Site Zoning Plans and Aerial View

3 Pages


AT‑3 View

Relevant Sections of Current Lease for Greenwich Baths

1 Page