Ariella Residential Estate, Brabham

Project: Ariella Residential Estate, Brabham
Client: Cedar Woods Properties

Service: Lead Environmental Consultant

Cedar Woods initially approached Aurora Environmental to provide advice during the due diligence period for the acquisition of a 40ha site in the suburb of Brabham.

Aurora Environmental have a long association with the Brabham locality, having worked on the Albion District Structure Plan (DSP) from 2006. The involvement in the DSP approval and knowledge of the environmental work completed meant that Aurora Environmental had a thorough understanding of the environmental risks for the Ariella Residential Estate site. This information supported the acquisition decision making process which culminated in Cedar Woods’ successful purchase in 2013.

Following the acquisition, further site investigations (such as strategic acid sulfate soils, groundwater monitoring, flora and vegetation survey and wetland assessment) were conducted to characterise site conditions and to address potential environmental impacts from the development of the site. The outcomes of these investigations were summarised in an Environmental Assessment report that supported a Local Structure Plan, along with a Wetland Management Plan and a Cultural Heritage Management Plan.

One of the significant project wins was based upon the Aurora Environmental’s advocacy work in relation to the retention and future management of a Resource Enhancement wetland. Although exhibiting signs of degradation, it was considered unlikely that a wetland reclassification would be supported by the Department of Parks and Wildlife (DPAW). Instead, Aurora Environmental successfully negotiated with the local authority for a reduced wetland buffer that integrated with the residential estate’s storm water management system, a position which DPAW did not support. The reduced land take requirement for the wetland buffer and the co-location of detention basins/swales in the buffer increased the lot yield, while also providing water to the wetland in a controlled manner. With reduced rainfall conditions, this will help secure the long-term preservation and functionality of the wetland.

Key services provided:

  • Environmental due diligence
  • Environmental assessment report and input into the preparation of a local structure plan
  • Flora and vegetation survey
  • Wetland assessment and wetland management plan
  • Cultural heritage management plan
  • Strategic acid sulfate soils assessment
  • Groundwater monitoring
  • Stakeholder engagement and negotiations

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