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Russell Bowie

An experienced environmental and planning lawyer, Russell is acknowledged to be one of Australia's leading lawyers in this specialist area. Russell was the chair of the Queensland Law Society's Planning and Environment Committee for almost 20 years and is currently ranked as a leading lawyer by Best Lawyers Australia, Who's Who Legal and Chambers Asia Pacific.

He has been described by clients as having "lots of industry knowledge" (Chambers Asia Pacific 2014), for his "thorough and strategic advice" (Chambers Asia Pacific 2013) and as “extremely knowledgeable and a good advocate - one of the best environmental lawyers in Queensland” (Chambers Asia Pacific 2012); and lauded for his "excellent quality of advice and outstanding service" (Chambers Global 2009).

He has extensive experience in the retail sector, having undertaken the approval and appeal processes for the development and expansion of regional shopping centres in Queensland over many years. He has also been particularly active in recent years in securing approvals for extractive industry development and providing environmental compliance advice and assistance throughout the life of their operation through to final site remediation for industrial or residential development.

Russell has an enviable record of successfully conducting planning appeals for major projects, including when appearing as counsel in major litigation in the Planning and Environment Court and Land Court. He led the landmark unimproved land valuation case for various major shopping centre developers (and the Shopping Centre Council of Australia) and appeared as counsel in a parallel case for the waste management industry. Our success in each of those matters led to a complete overhaul of Queensland valuation legislation, for which Russell was the lead negotiator on behalf of the retail sector.

Russell's successes appearing as Counsel have included establishing important precedents including the principle of requiring certainty of approval conditions and the application of the precautionary principle to the approval process.

Lend Lease retail projects - QLD

Advised Lend Lease in obtaining approval for a major extension of the Sunshine Plaza regional shopping centre, valued at $400 million. We are also advising Lend Lease on the integrity of the Cairns Planning Scheme in planning litigation challenging the role of the Cairns Central Shopping Centre.

National quarry projects

Providing ongoing advice to Boral on planning approvals for quarries (Lawnton, Yatala, Roseneath, North Ipswich, Moy Pocket, Mackay (Cedars), Tannum Sands, Redlynch, Redbank Plains and Purga quarries) and conversions of quarries to residential areas (Lawnton), infrastructure contribution levies and greenhouse reporting requirements.