The Victorian Coalition Government's sweeping reform of planning zones will return certainty to our suburbs and towns and in particular to councils, residents and the development industry.
"Planning zones are the greatest indicator of the style of development for any area. The Coalition Government's sweeping zones reform package aims to give certainty for areas that deserve protection and those identified as growth nodes," Mr Guy said.
"The Coalition Government's zone reforms reflect what communities have been crying out for, for many years – clear identification of areas that can grow and strong protection for areas that are designed to be low rise, low density neighbourhoods," Mr Guy said.
"These reforms will protect what makes Melbourne great – our streetscapes, our amenity, our liveability, while encouraging density and growth in clearly defined areas," Mr Guy said.
The Coalition Government's zones reform package features three new residential zones:
- Residential Growth Zone;
- General Residential Zone; and a
- Neighbourhood Residential Zone.
"The new Neighbourhood Residential Zone will be an instrument that can be adopted by councils to protect existing amenity of suburbs and towns.
"It will give many areas the protection they deserve and will be the strongest residential protection zone ever offered in the Victorian planning system," Mr Guy said.
This zone will include a number of features including mandatory height controls, stricter regulations around subdivision and the consideration of minimum lot sizes. The Neighbourhood Residential Zone will also be able to protect existing streetscapes and amenity with clear guidelines on what can be supported by a planning permit application.
In order to support integrity of the new Neighbourhood Residential Zone the Coalition Government has also introduced a number of complementary residential zones that will support development of medium and higher density housing in appropriate locations.
The new Residential Growth Zone will provide for a clear level of growth and change in identified areas that have clear targets for greater density. Councils will be able to use this zone to provide a new incentive to direct density and built form change in areas that are well known and identified.
"Importantly, these zones will be at the discretion of the local councils. It will ultimately be the view of the community that will inform which zone best fits where," Mr Guy said.
"Victoria's economic integrity is at the forefront of its planning decisions and these reforms are no different. The residential zone reform package supports Victoria's economy by clarifying where development can occur and what can be built," Mr Guy said.
"Importantly, it returns a level of planning certainty that has been sorely missing for the past decade," Mr Guy said.
Under the Coalition Government's planning reform agenda, plans for new outer urban growth have been released as well as the identification of Australia's largest inner city, urban renewal project in Fisherman's Bend.
These projects, combined with planning law changes and planning zone reform represent a major overhaul of the Victorian planning system since the change of government in November 2010.
"The time is right for planning reform and the Coalition Government is getting on with the job of delivering it."
The key features of the reformed planning zones will be issued for feedback for a period of 2 months from Monday 17 July until Friday 21 September.