August 9, 2018 / 12:47 AM / in 3 months

Australia's Crown Resorts sues government over bridge, Opera House views

Pedestrians and passengers aboarding ferries can be seen in front of the Sydney Opera House in central Sydney, Australia July 30, 2018. REUTERS/David Gray/File Photo

SYDNEY (Reuters) - Australian casino operator Crown Resorts Ltd said on Thursday it had filed a lawsuit to stop the government approving developments that obstruct views from its new Sydney resort of the landmark Sydney Opera House and Harbour Bridge.

Crown has been counting on a A$2.2 billion ($1.6 billion) Sydney waterfront resort, now under construction, to appeal to rich Chinese gamblers after abandoning operations in the Asian gambling hub Macau and Las Vegas.

As part of an earnings announcement on Thursday, the company 46 percent owned by billionaire James Packer said it had filed a lawsuit against the government’s Barangaroo Delivery Authority seeking an order that it comply with its contract with Crown.

The contract obligations call for negotiations to “ensure that sight lines from the Harbour Bridge to the Sydney Opera House are retained for the Crown Sydney Hotel Resort”.

The Crown statement did not give details on any specific development application threatening to obstruct its views.

Packer, who quit the Crown board earlier this year citing mental illness, bought two residential floors of Crown’s under-construction Sydney building for A$60 million, an apartment record for the city.

Representatives for Crown and the Barangaroo Delivery Authority were not immediately available for comment.

Reporting by Byron Kaye; Editing by Stephen Coates

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