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Planning & Environment


Planning & Environment


There are many challenges in the complex and highly regulated development industry.  Harwood Andrews' planning and environment team has the depth and breadth of experience to assist clients with these challenges with a view to achieving cost effective, timely and positive outcomes.  We have experience in a broad range of industry sectors including retail, residential development, commercial, agricultural, industrial, aged care, wind and mineral resources and provide the full suite of planning and environment legal services including:

  • Planning Scheme Amendments, including rezoning

  • Planning permit applications and other planning approvals

  • Planning Panel and VCAT appeal advocacy and dispute resolution

  • Development contributions and development agreements under section 173 of the Planning and Environment Act 1987

  • Site acquisition and environmental due diligence

  • Management of environmental approvals, contamination, pollution abatement notices and clean up notices under the Environment Protection Act 1970

  • Heritage matters

  • Aboriginal cultural heritage management plans

  • Planning and other regulatory compliance, enforcement, prosecution and defence

  • Environmental Effects Statements

  • Commonwealth environmental approvals advice

  • Compulsory acquisition, valuation and compensation

  • Water law

  • Environmental sustainability

  • Regulation of gaming machines and licensing

We work closely for and with many local government planning authorities and statutory bodies, which means we have an intimate understanding of their decision making processes and objectives. This provides us with a competitive advantage when either acting for such authorities or for developers seeking approval from such authorities.

We pride ourselves on being easy to work with, accessible and commercial. 

We regularly appear as advocates on behalf of clients in VCAT appeals and Planning Panel hearings on a broad range of matters.  We also work closely with consultants and expert witnesses from a range of disciplines and are experienced in briefing and instructing barristers.

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Local Government

Local Government


We have been working closely with the local government sector for more than 100 years.  

We appreciate the challenges associated with decision-making in local government, including balancing the need to advocate for local issues and deliver on customer service expectations while ensuring decision-making is informed, transparent and reasonable.

We have experience in providing advice and advocacy for local government on planning and environment matters and broader governance and local laws matters.

Harwood Andrews’ planning and environment team also work closely with the firms other practice areas to provide a full legal service to local government, including property law, employment, intellectual property and general commercial matters.

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173 Agreements - an overview for land owners

173 Agreements - an overview for land owners


The Planning and Environment team draft and review Section 173 Agreements on behalf of Councils, authorities, land owners and permit holders. 

If you own land or are interested in purchasing a property which is affected by or will require you to enter into a Section 173 Agreement, the below video provides a short overview of the purpose and operation of Section 173 Agreements. 


We have created an easy and quick way for you to submit your enquiry at your convenience. Once submitted we will review this information and provide you with a quote via email. In many cases we can provide a fixed price for preparing your agreement. This information will also be used when we prepare the agreement, so please complete as much information as you can.