The proposition is that key planning controls be established on a place by place basis is to provide a means of achieving the Desired Future Character (DFC) for any defined place or area. The method of defining the outcomes sought by the DFC, and the quantitative policies  to achieve those outcomes, eliminates the need for layered planning controls. The effect of any SEPPs and conventional LEPs deemed still relevant will be incorporated. 

The role of design guides will be reviewed in the light of the new assessment policies.  There is provision for the parcel record to call up design guides, such as the Apartment Design Guide, and technical codes such as the National Construction Code (BCA).  In time, it may be possible for some provisions of design guides to be incorporated into an improved NCC.  

Example of Planning Portal return on land parcel enquiry

Detail InformationCommentary
Lot title
Lot title, Lot and DPCurrently available from NSW Planning Portal
Street address
LGACould possibly include map references but not essential
Site characteristics
AreaThis type of information is available via land title, local govt records or by algorithm from supplier such as Nearmap
Length of boundaries, frontage firstDitto
Existing approved / recorded use
Reference to last approval with link to council records.Information from local govt records. Provision to be made for old records to be challenged or for alternative information to provided by an applicant where council records are incomplete.
Desired Future Character (DFC)
Precinct Name and No
Middle Hill, precinct 003
Could include map of precinct and those immediately adjoining
DFC descriptionExample
This could be a description of, and the Desired Future Character for, a medium density residential area within 400m of a suburban railway station. The community might settle on a future character of higher, but still medium density, residential with specified numeric controls such as height or dwelling density.
Development controls
Land uses preferred (from DFC)Apartment buildings, locally-oriented businesses
Height in storeys4 storeys or partial 5 with bonuses
FSR (if wanted)N/A
Setbacks or envelope controlsBuildings to be within envelope formed by projecting side and rear boundaries up to 2m and thereafter at 60o up to 4 storey height. Front setback 6m.
Parking (max or min)Maximum 1 space per apartment
Landscape area or footprint (but not both)Landscape area to be 30% of site area
Special requirements
Disability access (beyond normal provisions)As the precinct is within 1,200m of the railway station, apartment buildings are to be fully accessible
EnergyBuildings are to be designed to be capable of being carbon neutral by 2050
WaterBuildings to utilise either Sydney Water gray water systems for all permissible uses or to recycle water on site
Apartment mix including min apartment sizesNon specified
Conservation area (should be part of DFC)N/A
Heritage itemN/A
Site hazards
Acid sulphate soilsN/A
Flood liableN/A
Unstable ground subject to slipN/A
Bonus provisions
Complete accessibilityN/A
Affordable housing component for rentN/A
Design excellence processN/A
Site amalgamationNot required
Exempt development permitted
Change of use of approved commercial uses at ground floor of buildings

  • Restore community trust and involvement in the NSW planning system.
  • Make the planning system more efficient, understandable and transparent by adopting the latest digital technology.
  • Focus the planning system on achieving better places.
  • Provide an agile planning system better able to respond to climate change and technological advances.