Hannah Riggs
Special Counsel
I have extensive experience in environment and planning law, acting for a wide range of clients from both the private and public sector. I enjoy advising my clients on ways they can adapt their developments in order to obtain the relevant approvals, along with strategy for participation in and how to avoid lengthy litigation. I work closely with clients to provide strategic and pragmatic advice.
  • +61 7 3119 6240
  • + 61 412 008 026

I have specialised in environment and planning law since commencing my legal career in Commercial Litigation.

My clients include retail developers, extractive resource operators, the Queensland Government, retirement facilities, Receivers and Managers and individual land owners. I provide strategic advice and undertake complex litigation in the Planning and Environment Court, the Court of Appeal and the Land Court. I also advise on liquor licensing and gaming.

In addition, I provide training to key clients on the planning and environmental laws applicable to their organisation. I am active in the profession having written papers and presented at the State Conference for the Queensland Environmental Law Association (QELA), I am the current Treasurer for the QELA and I am a member of the Property Council of Australia's Queensland Planning and Environment Committee.

Career highlights

  • Neilsens Group: Acted in various Planning and Environment Court (P&E Court) proceedings seeking approvals with appropriate conditions, the most recent involving the coordination of 11 expert witnesses; advised in relation to development applications for various sites; acted in numerous applications to the P&E Court seeking minor changes to development applications and permissible changes to development approvals; acted in a claim for compensation for resumption of land for a road which sterilised resource and cut the extractive operations into two separate landholdings; acted in declarations proceedings in the P&E Court instituted by a local Community Group challenging an existing approval; advised and acted in relation to environmental compliance and protection issues including incident response at numerous Neilsens sites; acted in an application to the P&E Court seeking a declaration as to the validity of a development approval.
  • Scentre: Acted to obtain permissible changes to the Stage 6 Expansion Approval of Chermside Shopping Centre to achieve changes to the concurrence agency response issued by the Department of Transport and Main Roads and to enable night works to be conducted; acted in relation to the resumption of land by the Department of Transport and Main Roads and an Infrastructure Agreement for the provision of road works to be completed.
  • Wharf Investment Corporation: Acted in a submitter appeal which proceeded to a P&E Court hearing seeking for the approval of a high-rise development in a City Expansion zone.
  • GPT: Acted in Land Court proceedings against the annual valuation of an inner city high-rise development and negotiated a settlement resulting in a reduction of the valuation.
  • Reading: Acted in an application to the Planning and Environment Court seeking declarations that a code assessable development approval was assessed improperly, which resulted in a reduction in the gross floor area of the development, a narrowing of the use and a reduced traffic impact.
  • RNA: Advised in relation to a volumetric resumption resulting from the construction of the North South Bypass Tunnel, prepared a Claim for Compensation, obtained an advance on compensation and referred the Claim to the Land Court for determination of the amount of compensation.
  • The Queensland Government: Acted in the Land Court in relation to a Claim for Compensation following a land resumption for the Northern Pipeline Inter-connector Stage 1.