A DEVELOPMENT application to build a new service station in Scone which was initially rejected by Upper Hunter Shire Council will now go ahead, a court has ruled.

In October last year council refused an application to construct a service station with a convenience store, overhead fuel canopy, underground fuel tanks and infrastructure and signage at 18 Kelly Street, Scone.

However, following council’s determination, an appeal was lodged by the applicant, Upper Hunter Developments (Scone) Pty Ltd, in the NSW Land and Environment Court on December 22, 2020.

The matter went before a directions hearing and a conciliation conference before the court granted consent to the development on May 14, 2021, with amended plans.

Concept design of the proposed service station for 18 Kelly Street, Scone included in the approved plans.
 Concept design of the proposed service station for 18 Kelly Street, Scone included in the approved plans.

The court also ordered for the applicant to pay the costs thrown away as a result of amendments to the plans made during the process.

The proposed service station is a United 24 which includes plans for a Pie Face food chain and Quick Stop convenience store inside.

At Monday night’s ordinary council meeting, a motion was passed to accept the court’s decision.

Cr Sue Abbott said she felt “troubled” that this was out of councillors hands when “they are the decision makers”, but Mathew Pringle council’s Director of Environment and Community Services explained “once it goes to the Land and Environment Court, the court becomes the decision maker”.

“We had local government legal who were council’s representatives in the court and we had engaged independent experts in planning, traffic and contamination to represent council,” he said.

Also at the meeting, council endorsed four community projects to apply for with the $839,201 allocated to the shire under the NSW government’s Stronger Country Communities Fund.

These include resurfacing of courts at the Scone Tennis Association in Aberdeen Street and the construction of a new club house; the refurbishment of the Scone Memorial Swimming Pool change room and office facilities; fully fencing the Wilson Memorial Oval at Murrurundi and refurbishment of change facilities at Merriwa Olympic Pool.

Extracted in full from: Development application for new Scone service station which was opposed by Upper Hunter Shire Council now approved by NSW Land and Environment Court | Hunter Valley News | Muswellbrook, NSW