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NSW Department of Planning and Environment
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What is Regionally significant development?

A regional development needs to be notified and assessed by a council and then determined by the relevant Planning Panel - either a Sydney planning panel for applications within the Greater Sydney Region or the relevant Joint Regional Planning Panel outside of Sydney. Regional development is defined in Schedule 7 of the State Environmental Planning Policy (State and Regional Development) 2011 and includes:

  • development with a capital investment value (CIV) over $30 million
  • development with a CIV over $5 million which is:
    • council related
    • lodged by or on behalf of the Crown (State of NSW)
    • private infrastructure and community facilities
    • eco-tourist facilities.
  • extractive industries, waste facilities and marinas that are designated development
  • certain coastal subdivisions
  • development with a CIV between $10 million and $30 million which is referred to the Planning Panel by the applicant after 120 days

Regional development does not apply in the City of Sydney Council area.

How do I apply?

Applications are made to the council and it is the council’s responsibility to carry out a proper and professional assessment of a proposal for the planning panel’s determination of the development application. Depending on council policy, this will include the public exhibition of the application and assessment of submissions received.


The Planning Panel website provides further information on regionally significant development.


Visit the Joint Regional Planning Panels for facts and figures about regional significant development applications.


Pilot program to reduce assessment times

The NSW Government has begun a pilot program to help 13 selected councils across the state make faster assessments of regionally significant development applications.


The $4.5 million program will allow the councils to appoint and upskill staff, improve technology, develop guidelines and engage Planning Panels earlier in the assessment process. 


Each of the councils has been allocated $350,000 each to help get the complex projects up and running more quickly.


The injection of resources will enable the councils to bring better outcomes for the community and get shovels in the ground sooner to deliver new homes, vital infrastructure and create more jobs.


If the pilot proves successful, we will look to roll out the lessons learned across the rest of the state.


The 13 Councils were selected based on the following criteria:

  • Historically high volume of regionally significant development applications;
  • Increasing number of new regionally significant development applications over the past 12 months;
  • Ability to contribute to overall regionally significant development applications assessment times; and
  • Opportunities to improve assessment timeframes.


The councils involved in the pilot are: Bayside Council Hornsby Shire Council,  Sutherland Shire Council, Campbelltown City Council,  Liverpool City Council,  Willoughby City Council, City of Canterbury-Bankstown, Randwick City Council, Newcastle City Council, Cumberland Council, The Hills Shire Council, Central Coast Council, and Lake Macquarie City Council.


Relevant Legislation:

Page last updated: 12/07/2021