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Updated Environmental Planning and Assessment Act

NSW has an updated, modern planning system that is simpler, faster and designed to ensure high quality decision and planning outcomes for the people of NSW.

The Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 has been updated and is the culmination of the biggest overhaul of the Act since the legislation’s inception almost 40 years ago.

The new Act follows the passing of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Amendment Act 2017 in the NSW Parliament in November 2017. It will commence on 1 March 2018 with most of the changes coming into effect from this date. Others will take longer to come into effect as they require further guidance and consultation.

 

For further information, please call our Information Centre on 1300 305 695 or contact us.

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Staged implementation

Staged implementation

The Government is taking a staged approach to the commencement of the new Act to ensure a smooth transition to the new measures.

Read more about staged implementation
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Part 1 – New objects of the Act

Part 1 – New objects of the Act

The Act includes new objects that reflect the Government’s commitment to thriving, safe and well–designed communities with local character and heritage.

Read more about the New objects of the Act
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Part 2 – Community Participation Plans

Part 2 – Community Participation Plans
New community participation plans will need to be prepared by all planning authorities. Read more about Community Participation Plans
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Part 2 – Independent Planning Commission

Part 2 – Independent Planning Commission

The Planning Assessment Commission will be known as the Independent Planning Commission, recognizing its independence and decision–making role.

Read more about the change to the Commission
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Part 2 – Local Planning Panels

Part 2 – Local Planning Panels 
The Act recognises the importance of accountability and probity in the determination of Development Applications. Read more about changes to Local Planning Panels
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Part 3 – Strategic planning

Part 3 – Strategic planning 
The Act recognises the critical role of councils in strategic planning for their local area. Read more about Strategic planning
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Part 4 – Development controls and approvals

Part 4 – Development controls and approvals

Development controls in a council’s Local Environmental Plan (LEP) and Development Control Plan (DCP) need to be kept up–to–date and as simple as possible.

Read more about Development controls and approvals
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Part 4 – Complying development

Part 4 – Complying development 
The Act recognises the importance of Complying development adhering to the development standards, such as height limits and floor space ratios. Read more about Complying development
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Part 4 – State Significant Development and ending Part 3A

Part 4 – State Significant Development and ending Part 3A
The Act simplifies and clarifies the process for State Significant Development and closes transitional arrangements for Part 3A projects. Read more about changes to these development processes
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Part 5 – Infrastructure delivery

Part 5 – Infrastructure delivery
There is a requirement for notification of proposed activities to ensure future plans for an infrastructure corridor will not be affected.
Read more about Infrastructure delivery
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Part 6 – Building and subdivision

Part 6 – Building and subdivision
The new Act strengthens building regulation and certification procedures to ensure quality and safety. Read more about Building and subdivision
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Part 7 – Infrastructure contributions

Part 7 – Infrastructure contributions 
The infrastructure contributions system has been improved to promote the efficient sharing of costs and benefits in infrastructure development. Read more about the Infrastructure contributions
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Part 8 – Reviews and appeals

Part 8 – Reviews and appeals
The new Act allows applicants to request an internal review from council of a decision about integrated development. Read more about changes to the Reviews and appeals process
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Part 9 – Enforcement measures

Part 9 – Enforcement measures
The Department and local councils will have the ability to enter into enforceable undertakings with people acting on a development consent, to allow for greater flexibility. Read more about the new Enforcement measures
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New Act sections guide

New Act Sections Guide
The new Act is easier to navigate, understand and it has 10 principal parts, with all provisions decimal numbered. Read through the New Act Sections Guide
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Document / archive library

Document / archive library
The Environmental Planning and Assessment Amendment Bill 2017 has been passed by Parliament. Read through the Document / archive library