An Auckland developer whose new home was demolished in a digger attack four months ago has been taken to the Environment Court for non-compliant work at its 19-lot Flat Bush subdivision.
Auckland Council sought orders against DDL Homes and DDL Estates for work at its project where land stabilisation of the Hera St site off Flat Bush School Rd created problems.
The Environment Court issued three orders after the council raised alarm at the standard of works and the environmental consequences if it was allowed to continue.
Chief Environment Court Judge David Kirkpatrick issued the three orders against DDL Homes and DDL Estates, also noting that work had an environmental impact.
It was DDL which during the winter of this year announced one of its new homes worth more than $600,000 was demolished in an overnight digger attack.
In June, the Herald reported how vandals had torn down a new $675,000 home after breaking into a construction site and seemingly hot-wiring a digger.
Workers arrived at the Flat Bush site on June 11 to find vandals had sent a 20-tonne digger's bucket smashing into the home's roof and walls, meaning it would need to be rebuilt.
DDL Homes owner Baljit Dheil said at the time that seven townhouses attached to the smashed home appeared not to have been damaged.
Now, DDL has been found by the court to be carrying out non-compliant work on the Hera St site.
"The council observed a series of works on the site which they concluded were breaches of the resource consents and the Auckland Unitary Plan and had adverse effects on the environment," the judge said.
On August 20, the council applied for orders against the DDL companies. Those were to stop them from continuing the housing project.
The first was an interim order, issued without any notice, demanding an immediate stop of works at the site, the judge said. The second was an order for stabilisation of the site.
The third was an order for a site management plan to be formulated before any substantive works restarted on the site.
Sediment and erosion controls were ordered to be installed too.
The hearing on papers was decided on September 24. At that time, Auckland was under alert level 4 restrictions, the decision said. That prevented any further works at the site so meant an interim enforcement order was no longer required to stop the works, the court noted.
The parties instead used the time to talk to see if matters could be resolved, the decision said referring to counsel for the council and the developer.
On September 22, an agreement was reached on the terms and conditions of an enforcement order.
Marcus Jacobson is DDL Estate's sole director and the sole director of its shareholder Rua Whare which he wholly owns.
He told the Herald that the Environment Court matter was being handled by Baljit Dheil and provided contact details.
She is the DDL Home's sole director and sole shareholder but did not respond to requests for comment on the court case.
On October 7, the Herald reported how police have run out of leads into the digger-attached house case.
"Police have investigated this matter and unfortunately there are no further lines of inquiry presently available," a police spokeswoman said.
DDL Homes' logo is "delivering dreams" and is marketing homes it has built in Mt Eden, Papatoetoe and Ormiston Rd. It says it has completed housing projects in Takanini, Papakura and Opaheke.
The business is headquartered on Osterley Way, Manukau.
Kerri Ferguson, the council's compliance response and investigations manager, said the team had raised matters about work at the subdivision earlier this year.
"There had been ongoing failure to comply with the conditions of resource consent, as well as breaches of the Auckland Unitary Plan, primarily due to sediment and erosion control, and streamworks issues," Ferguson said.
"Despite abatement notices and fines being issued by the compliance monitoring team, the breaches continued to occur. This resulted in the council seeking an enforcement order from the Environment Court to ensure compliance," Ferguson said.
The enforcement order was granted by consent on September 24 and required DDL Homes to install, certify and maintain sediment and erosion control measures.
The developer must provide and implement an erosion and sediment control plan and streamworks environmental offset plan.
The council will ensure the court's enforcement order was complied with so that the development was completed in accordance with best practice sediment and erosion control and that the effects of the streamworks are adequately mitigated, Ferguson said today.