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Crown Sydney legally flawed says Echo

Star Casino-owner Echo Entertainment has slammed rival Crown Resort’s plans for a 69-storey tower as legally flawed, local media reported.

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, legal advice provided to the planning department of Echo Entertainment says the Crown Sydney resort would be open to court challenge.

The advice, by Adrian Galasso, SC, and Clifford Ireland, questions the scale of the environmental impacts of the new proposal given the increased height and density of the buildings proposed for Barangaroo South under the plan, the SMH reports.

The new concept plan would result in a 7.4 percent increase in gross floor area for Barangaroo, including raising the height of Crown CEO James Packer's hotel and casino building from 168 meters to 275 meters. 

The advice suggests the government's decision to grant Packer a casino license before the concept plan application is considered puts in doubt the Planning Minister's ability to be impartial in his decision-making.

"[The modification] if granted, would be open to judicial review proceedings ... of the Land and Environment Court's jurisdiction," the advice says, according to the SMH.

Crown Sydney CEO Rowen Craigie hit back at the claims as underhanded business tactics to fend off a fellow competitor.

"I consider this a blatant misuse of the planning process by The Star casino to try and protect their existing monopoly and delay much-needed competition into Sydney's VIP gaming market," Craigie said in a statement.

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