Grant and release of easements on Crown land
Easements generally provide the right to access and use land while the legal title or ownership of the land remains with the owner of the land. An easement does not grant ownership of the land.
For Crown land, this means that a range of third parties can use the land for a variety of activities, and the land continues to be owned by the State of New South Wales.
Easements are generally used to secure rights of access and rights for use of the land for utilities and infrastructure such as electricity lines, water supply pipes, sewer pipes, bridges, drainage, and walking paths.
Easements under the Crown Land Management Act 2016
The Crown Land Management Act 2016 (the Act) commenced on 1 July 2018 and contains new provisions for the granting and release of easements on Crown land.
The provisions of the Act include provisions relating to easements:
- for public purposes
- to councils
- over leased Crown land
- for private purposes in certain circumstances
The Act maintains broad powers for the Minister for Housing and Property to grant and release easements over Crown land for a range of public and private purposes. The Act also continues to allow private owners to grant easements over their land, securing public access to adjoining or nearby Crown land.