28 May 2019

Belconnen building site shut down after construction begins with no approvals

| Lachlan Roberts
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Construction plans

Access Canberra has shut down a large Belconnen building site after it was found that works had been undertaken without relevant development or building approvals.

Access Canberra said inspectors issued a stop work notice and a prohibition notice on the Belconnen building site late on Friday afternoon (24 May) but did not reveal which building site in Belconnen.

ACT Constructions occupations registrar Ben Green described the incident as an “unusual and troubling case”.

“This case appears to demonstrate a significant breach as neither a development application nor building approval were in place,” Mr Green said.

“We will continue to investigate this matter to determine whether an offence has been committed. There will be no further works permitted until this matter is resolved.

“It is an offence for a person to undertake building work without a development approval if that type of building work requires approval and the person knows of that requirement.”

Mr Green said Access Canberra continued its proactive focus on supporting building quality across all forms of development – from residential, to multi-unit development and commercial.

“We are committed to ensuring compliance which in turn supports quality building in the ACT,” he said.

Since July 2018 Access Canberra has given 178 demerit points to construction occupation licensees, 28 stop work notices and nine notices directing building work to be undertaken.

In addition, Access Canberra has undertaken 328 proactive building compliance checks, 18,218 plumbing, drainage and gas inspections and 34,202 electrical inspections in this period.

The latest ACT Government shut down comes after 12 building companies in Gungahlin were issued with stop work notices on 1 March for non-compliance, with the notices lifted last week.

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Once again, the public is not to hear who these shonky builders are.

Is this what happens when a government is so hand in glove with developers that they believe they can act with impunity and the government will simply retrofit all the approvals? Sure looking like it.

No. It’s more like government breached there statutory time frame to decide the DA and developers are sick and tired of them doing this all the time. #revolution

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