A application to take the controversial ‘Skybarrels’ Cornish Hill development to the Victorian Civil and Administrative Appeals Tribunal has been made by solicitors for the developers following Hepburn Shire’s failure to consider the application in time.

A planning application for five ‘skybarrels’ – 12 metre tall, two story units that will overlook Lake Daylesford – was made to Hepburn Shire last August.

The skybarrels are metal cylinders elevated on galvanised steel beams supported by red brick retaining walls. Each unit will have an external water tank, one bedroom, a sitting area and a bathroom.

Objectors are concerned the skybarrels application, for 70 Camp St, Daylesford, would see these structures as the dominant feature on Cornish Hill.

Hepburn Council received 19 objections to the proposal.  Procedural concerns have now led to the applicant taking the proposal to VCAT without a determination by Council.

Chief Executive, Bradley Thomas said, “The application has been appealed at the Victorian Civil Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) for Council failing to make a decision on the application within the prescribed time. As the matter has now been appealed at VCAT, Council will not be able to make a decision on the application. Council will be a party to the VCAT process.  We are fully committed to working with VCAT and all parties throughout the process.”

The applicant’s legal representative has requested a practice hearing on May 6th.

Concerned local residents have banded together to form  “No2Barrels” to ensure their arguments are presented to VCAT and to ask for the application to be rejected.

Privacy concerns have limited access to information for the “No2Barrels” group and made it difficult to contact all objectors to the ‘Skybarrels’ proposal.

The “No2Barrels” group is asking all those who objected to contact “No2Barrels” so that their views can be shared and approaches coordinated. Other residents with concerns can contact the group but can not be included in the representation to VCAT.

A spokesperson for No2Barrels stressed “… the importance of maximising representation to ensure VCAT appreciate the community concerns with this project. Furthermore, given the timing, urgent action is required.”

The No2Barrels group can be contacted on: no2barrels@gmail.com.

Related stories:

Controversial “Skybarrels” Proposed for Cornish Hill

Staff Shortages and Planning Applications Impact Council Responsiveness

Editors’ note: Mark Rak, who is a member of the editorial committee, has declared a conflict of interest in relation to this article and has not participated in editorial decisions on the publication of the article.