Heritage - European and Indigenous

Our heritage specialists work with developers, project proponents and indigenous groups to negotiate agreements for European and Indigenous heritage matters in all Australian jurisdictions at the federal, state and local levels.

We are experienced in optimising the development potential of properties that are already or proposed to be heritage listed at the federal, state and local government levels.

Our lawyers are thoroughly versed in the principles of heritage conservation and the commercial, client and environmental issues that cultural heritage law presents. We liaise with industry bodies, heritage architects, heritage consultants, archaeologists, indigenous groups and regulatory authorities, to achieve the best outcome for our clients and for the preservation of our cultural heritage.

Our specific expertise includes advising on the nature and effects of heritage listing and protection, the obligations imposed on owners as a result of heritage listing, associated offences and exceptions, how to resist proposed listings and remove listings and how to navigate the assessment, approvals and appeals processes.

We manage heritage protection orders issued by state and local governments and advise on duties and obligations following the discovery of aboriginal remains and objects, including notification obligations to relevant authorities and obtaining necessary approvals.

We also work closely with our property and tax teams in the negotiations and preparation of heritage and conservation agreements and advice on ratings and tax exemptions that may apply to heritage listed properties. We liaise with heritage architects and consultants in the preparation of conservation management plans and heritage impact assessment.

Port of Melbourne Channel Deepening Project

Advised Port of Melbourne Channel Deepening, one of the largest infrastructure projects conducted by the Victorian Government in recent times, seen as critical to the Port and Australia's position in global shipping. As key advisers to the Port of Melbourne Corporation, we advised on many aspects of the project, including the Supplementary Environmental Effects Statement and managed the public hearing process Federal Court litigation over the Federal Government's environmental approval for the dredging, cultural and Aboriginal heritage issues, relocation of essential infrastructure under the Yarra River, the resolution of the alliance dredging contract, and land tenure issues relating to land assets affected by the project.