DEVELOPER Yolk Property Group has asked Bayswater council to refund a $50,000 cash-in-lieu payment for a project approved in 2014.
The audacious claim was sparked by a change in state planning regulations last October which allows developers to ask for conditions previously applied to developments to be deleted.
Bayswater councillors knocked back Yolk’s request on Tuesday, with staff warning the refund could open the floodgates.
Yolk’s four-storey mixed-use building on Eighth Avenue in Maylands was approved by the council, but it made owner Ecolibrium Dorado pay $50,000 for a shortfall in parking bays.
Yolk argues the cash should be returned because of $35,000 in unexpected costs when the owner ceded part of a laneway to the council so a right of way could be widened. The land ceded was also worth more than $100,000 Yolk pointed out.
It also meant losing 10 more parking bays, so the developer installed a $170,000 car stacking system to compensate.
But staff say ceding the lane was clearly laid out in the original conditions, and warn this is a test case.
“This is the first application of its nature considered by the city under clause 77 post-construction of the approved development,” a report to council said.
“It would set an undesirable precedent for past and future developers to seek refunds from the city for accepted payments, post construction”.
The decision could be appealed to the state administrative tribunal.
by DAVID BELL