Townships and Urban Areas DPA approved by Council

After 13 years in formulation, the Townships and Urban Areas Development Plan Amendment (DPA), the largest ever undertaken by our Council, has been approved by Council and submitted to the Minister for Planning for approval.

This is a major achievement and a significant effort over the past few years. Three previous versions had been lodged to the Minister for consideration before the most recent version was endorsed for community consultation.

An eight week agency and public consultation process was undertaken during May and June this year, which resulted in 45 public and ten agency submissions being received.

There were no substantial submissions arguing against the policy directions proposed in this document. A public meeting was then held on 14 July which provided an opportunity for ten of the submitters to speak to their submissions before the Committee formed to hear public submissions.

Submissions were consider and the DPA documents were amended where appropriate in response with the final DPA presented to and approved by the Council's Strategic Planning and Development Policy Committee (SPDPC) on 13 September. A further amendment was approved by Council on 27 September resulting in a minimum allotment size of 2000m2 being set for sub divisions in the Country Living Zone.

The key proposed policy changes are as follows:

  • introduction of formal zones and Policy Areas for the townships of Balhannah, Oakbank, Lobethal, Charleston, Birdwood, Gumeracha and Kersbrook;
  • introduction of separate Policy Areas for 'Stirling and Aldgate' and 'Bridgewater' within the Country Living Zone;
  • criteria which, if satisfied, would allow for the creation of smaller allotments in some townships and the Country Living Zone;
  • the introduction of 'Desired Character Statements' which describe how a particular place should be developed in the future;
  • providing further opportunities to construct housing for older and young people;
  • improving policies relating to energy efficiency;
  • introduction of 'Settlement' Policy Areas within the Watershed (Primary Production) Zone to provide specific guidance for the settlements of Verdun, Inglewood and Lenswood;
  • a 'Lobethal Abattoir' Policy Area within the Watershed (Primary Production) Zone to provide specific guidance for this high impact activity in a way that is not addressed in the current Zone;
  • a Mixed Residential Zone around the Stirling District Centre and Crafers Local Centre Zones to provide a greater range of accommodation types close to shops and public transport;
  • rezoning of community ovals in Kersbrook and Birdwood to Public Purpose Zone, recognising these as community facilities;
  • amalgamation of four of the five Residential Zones in Rostrevor, Woodforde and Teringie into one Residential Zone with two Policy Areas;
  • rezoning three properties in Stirling/Aldgate from Public Purpose Zone to Country Living (namely Beechwood, Wairoa and St Joseph's Convent) as these properties are no longer in public or community ownership;
  • providing further opportunities for home-based businesses; and
  • the introduction of new policies from the State's Planning Policy Library in both the Council Wide (now General) section and in the zones addressed by this DPA.

The document was lodged with the Minister for Planning on 30 September 2016. The Minister for Planning has the options to either approve, reject or amend the proposed amendments. It is not known how long the Minister will take to make his decision in this regard which can range from six to 12 weeks.

Any enquiries regarding this DPA should be directed to:
Mike Flehr, Senior Strategic and Policy Planner
8408-0503 or

Townships and Urban Areas DPA