Australia-listed casino operator Crown Resorts Ltd. has challenged the New South Wales (NSW) government to a legal tug-of-war over the iconic Sydney Harbor view.
The Wall Street Journal reported that Crown Resorts has brought the Barangaroo Delivery Authority (BDA) to court over concerns that new property developments could obstruct the harbor views from its Barangaroo casino.
Crown is betting on the unobstructed Barangaroo views to attract affluent Chinese gamblers to visit its in-development Crown Sydney casino after the casino operator scrapped its overseas expansion plans.
In its lawsuit, Crown wants the court to compel BDA to comply with a contract requiring the government to consult on any developments that may affect the panoramic views of the iconic Sydney Opera House and Harbor Bridge.
BDA, which is responsible for the management of the Barangaroo area, plans to develop 5.2-hectares of Central Barangaroo district into a public space for recreation, events, and entertainment, as well as residential, retail, and commercial spaces.
The supposed contract obligations “ensure that sight lines from the Harbor Bridge to the Sydney Opera House are retained for the Crown Sydney Hotel Resort,” according to Crown.
“The proceedings seek injunctive relief and declarations against the BDA that, in substance, require the BDA to comply with a number of its contractual obligations under the Crown Development Agreement,” Crown said in a regulatory filing.
Crown wasn’t the only one suing BDA over the iconic Sydney harbor views. Property developer Lendlease also filed an injunction seeking to stop the agency from constructing properties that could block the views of its apartment complex, which is located near Crown Sydney.
Despite filing a lawsuit, Lendlease remains hopeful that the parties would reach an agreement through negotiation.
BDA, for its part, claimed that it had been negotiating with Lendlease and Crown about the matter for the past two years. It vowed to defend its position in court, according to the report.
“At all times the Authority has acted in good faith and in accordance with its contractual obligations,” a BDA spokesman told ABC News online.