Precinct Acceleration Protocol
The Precinct Acceleration Protocol (PAP) provides landholders with the opportunity to bring forward the release of their land for planning ahead of the government’s program. Those wishing to bring forward the release of their land for planning under the PAP must satisfy a number of criteria, as outlined below.
Stage one: interim approvals
Proponents must nominate the Precinct they wish to accelerate and advise how they will satisfy:
- their ability and commitment to finance and deliver the full estimated infrastructure for the Precinct and any connecting infrastructure linking the Precinct to existing urban areas
- the extent to which they will pay monetary contributions and / or carry out works-in-kind, for the provision of the infrastructure and the planning process.
A precondition of the agreement is that there will be no additional cost to government resulting from the acceleration.
Stage two: implementation and approval
During stage two a detailed requirements package is prepared which must be agreed to by the proponent before the Precinct will be released for planning.
Once a proponent agrees to the government's requirements package this is incorporated into a formal Planning Agreement that will be placed on public exhibition as part of the Precinct planning process. More information is provided in the following documents:
- North West and South West Growth Centres Precinct Acceleration Protocol (DOC, 105 KB)
- Precinct Acceleration Protocol Guidelines for Applicants (PDF, 53.2 KB).
Submissions for Precinct accelerations are assessed by the Department, which oversees the process and consults with the relevant local council and other government agencies as required.
The Probity Plan for Precinct Acceleration Protocol Stage 1 (PDF, 71.5 KB) outlines the processes, under which submissions, will be considered.
Biodiversity Certification has been granted over the Growth Centres SEPP. It balances the protection and management of conservation values with the efficient supply of land for urban development in Sydney.
Biodiversity Certification addresses biodiversity issues upfront. Landowners, councils and developers will no longer need to undertake a threatened species assessment with Development Applications in areas classified as 'certified' under the Biodiversity Certification Order.
View the Order in Gazette No. 182, December 2007 at the Legislation NSW website.
Certification also provides $530 millions, to purchase areas of high conservation value or to enter into private conservation agreements, both inside and outside the Growth Areas.
Importantly, it cuts red tape by strategically addressing biodiversity issues and enables better conservation outcomes, with improved protection for the highest-quality and most sensitive bushland areas inside and outside the Growth Areas. In addition, landowners, councils and developers will not have to look at biodiversity issues individually for Development Applications in areas which are certified. View the Guide to Biodiversity Certification (PDF, 640 KB).
How do I know if land is certified or non-certified?
The certified and non–certified land is shown on the Growth Areas Biodiversity Certification Maps which are part of the NSW Biodiversity Conservation Act 2016. These maps can be found on the NSW Legislation website.
South West Growth Centre Biodiversity Certification – Update to the Map of Certified Land June 2015
Changes (Amendment No. 2) to the subject land map for the 'South West Growth Centre Biodiversity Certification' were approved by the Minister for the Environment on 12 June 2015.
The updated map (applied 12 June 2015) amends the boundaries of certified land in the East Leppington precinct in the South West Growth Area to align with the outcomes of the precinct planning process. The updated map is available to view at the NSW Legislation website as a PDF.
South West Growth Centre Biodiversity Certification – Update to the Map of Certified Land March 2015
Changes (Amendment No. 1) to the subject land map for the 'South West Growth Centre Biodiversity Certification' were approved by the Minister for the Environment on 20 February 2015.
The updated map (applied 15 March 2015) amends the boundaries of certified land to align with the outcomes of the precinct planning process.
The updated maps can be found on the Legislation NSW website.
Strategic Assessment Growth Centre
Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 Strategic Assessment
To enable development to proceed in the Growth Areas and protect Sydney’s precious environment, the NSW Government undertook a Strategic Assessment of the Growth Area under the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act).
The Strategic Assessment considered the potential impacts of development on matters of national environmental significance for the whole of North West and South West Growth Areas. This allows strategic conservation outcomes to be identified and secured. It also provides greater certainty for those constructing new houses and employment areas, as well as infrastructure providers in the Growth Areas.
This approach builds on – but does not replace – the Growth Centres Biodiversity Certification under the State Biodiversity Conservation Act 2016. The Growth Centres Biodiversity Certification will continue to be implemented.
NSW and Commonwealth Governments entered into an agreement in 2009 to proceed with the Strategic Assessment. The agreement (PDF, 2.01 MB) includes Terms of Reference for Strategic Assessment report.
General information in relation to Strategic assessments under the Commonwealth EPBC Act can be found at the Strategic assessments page at the Commonwealth's Department of the Environment and Energy website.
The exhibition of the draft Sydney Growth Centres Strategic Assessment Report and draft Sydney Growth Centres Program Report was undertaken in 2010.
Annual Reporting on EPBC Act Strategic Assessment
Every year the Department prepares an Annual Report to meet the requirements of Section 5.1 of the Sydney Growth Centres Strategic Assessment Program Report 2010 (the Program Report).
The Annual Report highlights the outcomes achieved in each financial year, since the endorsement of the Strategic Assessment Program on 20 December 2011. The Annual Report addresses both the NSW and the Commonwealth Government biodiversity requirements, particularly the commitments for the relevant matters of national environmental significance (listed in Part 4 of the Program Report), and the funding provided and expended for offsets outside of the Growth Areas.
Strategic Assessment Annual Reports
- Sydney Growth Centres Strategic Assessment Annual Report 2014–2015 (PDF, 588 KB)
- Sydney Growth Centres Strategic Assessment Annual Report 2013–2014 (PDF, 571 KB) and Letter – endorsement of annual reporting 2013–2014 (PDF, 45.0 KB)
Draft EPBC Act Strategic Assessment Report for the Sydney Growth Centres Program, May 2010
- Part 1 – pages i to 45 (PDF, 4.26 MB)
- Part 2 – pages 46 to 86 (PDF, 4.84 MB)
- Part 3 – pages 87 to 105 (PDF, 4.73 MB)
- Part 4 – pages 106 to 109 (PDF, 7.69 MB)
- Part 5 – pages 110 to 125 (PDF, 2.58 MB)
- Part 6 – pages 126 to 139 (PDF, 3.34 MB)
- Part 7 – pages 140 to 195 (PDF, 4.63 MB)
- Part 8 – pages 196 to 248 (PDF, 4.89 MB)
Sydney Growth Centres Strategic Assessment Draft Program Report, May 2010
- Part 1 – pages i to 28 (PDF, 3.39 MB)
- Part 2 – pages 29 to 34 (PDF 3.43 MB)
- Part 3 – pages 35 to 65 (PDF, 1.58 MB)
- Part 4 – pages 66 to 111 (PDF, 750 KB)
The Commonwealth Environment Minister has endorsed the Sydney Growth Centres Strategic Assessment Program, and approved all actions associated with development of the Sydney Growth Centres as described in the Program Report:
- Endorsement Letter (PDF, 328 KB)
- Notification of decision to endorse the program (PDF, 4.56 MB)
- Proposed Approval Decision (PDF, 314 KB)
- Approval Decision - 28 February 2012 (PDF, 80.3 KB)
- Notification of decision to approve development actions (PDF, 48.9 KB)
- Program Report (PDF 7.96 MB) this final program report includes the Addendum
- Supplementary Report - part 1 (PDF, 3.39 MB) and Supplementary Report - part 2 (PDF, 3.43 MB).
The need for site by site approvals under the EPBC Act for the approved actions is no longer required, as long as the actions are consistent with the endorsed Program.
How do I know if an action is in accordance with the endorsed program?
Any proposal on land that is certified under the Growth Centres Biodiversity Certification is in accordance with the endorsed program.
Any proposal on land that is non-certified must be in accordance with the Relevant Biodiversity Measures (RBM) of the Growth Areas Biodiversity Certification. For example, any proposal for essential infrastructure (RBM 11 of the Biodiversity Certification) that will result in the clearing of Existing Native Vegetation (ENV) on land that is non-certified under the Biodiversity Certification is in accordance with the endorsed Program if offsets required by RBM 11 have been provided and, where necessary, the requirements of RBM 12 have been satisfied. Depending on the location of the proposal other RBMs may also apply.
If you are proposing essential infrastructure in the non-certified areas, please liaise with the Department to ensure consistency with the all the requirements of the Biodiversity Certification and Strategic Assessment is achieved.
Review of Environment Conservation and Public Recreation–Regional Zones September 2013
The amendment to the list of permissible uses in the Environment Conservation (EC) and Public Recreation–Regional (PR–R) zones of the State Environmental Planning Policy (Sydney Region Growth Centres) 2006 (Growth Centres SEPP) was finalised and notified on the NSW Legislation website on Friday 13 September 2013.
The changes include amendments to the list of uses in the Land Use Table in Clause 12 of the Growth Centres SEPP for the EC and the PR–R zones to reinforce the environmental objectives of that land to which these zones apply and ensure the permissible uses reflect the zone objectives.
These changes were a result of the review of the EC and PR–R zones undertaken by the Department as required under Commitment 3, Part 4 of the Strategic Assessment Program Report, to confirm they are adequate for conservation purposes.
- Post–Exhibition Planning Report (PDF, 372 KB)
- Summary of Submissions – Review of Environment Conservation and Public Recreation–Regional Zones of the Growth Centres SEPP (PDF, 17.1 KB)
Review of the Cumberland Plain Woodland Higher Long-Term Management Viability and Priority Conservation Lands
Sydney Growth Centres Strategic Assessment Commitment 7 Cumberland Plain Woodland HMV and PCLs review Outcomes Report, March 2014
Commitment 7 of the of the Sydney Growth Centres Strategic Assessment Program Report required a review of the Commonwealth Cumberland Plain Woodland Higher long–term Management Viability (HMV) lands identified under the strategic assessment for inclusion within the Cumberland Plain Priority Conservation Lands (PCLs). The Office of Environment and Heritage, as the lead agency for this Commitment, has now completed this review:
Page last updated: 27/07/2022