NSW Department of Planning and Environment

Darkinjung Local Aboriginal Land Council Case Study

Darkinjung is one of 120 Local Aboriginal Land Councils (LALCs) in NSW. It is the largest non-Government landholder on the Central Coast.

The NSW Government is working with the Darkinjung LALC to help achieve its aspirations for its land and greater self determination.

2022 Darkinjung Development Delivery Plan 

The Darkinjung Development Delivery Plan (DDP) was approved by the Minister for Planning on 16 December 2022 under the provisions of the State Environmental Planning Policy (Planning Systems) 2021 (Chapter 3 Aboriginal land).   

The DDP applies to 31 sites (consisting of 94 lots) in the Central Coast local government area. It considers the high-level opportunities and constraints associated with future development of the 31 sites. 

View the DDP

The DDP does not approve development on the sites. The approval of the DDP is an initial step toward consideration of planning proposals or development applications (DAs) with opportunities for community consultation.

Under the provisions of the Planning Systems SEPP, the DDP becomes a matter for consideration by consent authorities for development applications; and must be considered when planning proposals are prepared.

The approval of the DDP also makes certain development regionally significant development so that planning decisions will be made by the Hunter and Central Coast Regional Planning Panel rather than the local council. The DDP allows Darkinjung LALC to request an independent review of planning proposals which apply to sites in the DDP – such a review would be done by the Hunter and Central Coast Strategic Planning Panel.

These arrangements are detailed in the Aboriginal Land Planning Framework.

2019 Planning reform package 

The Darkinjung Delivery Framework was released in February 2019. The Framework was the NSW Government’s response to the fact that all Local Aboriginal Land Councils (LALCs) face challenges securing suitable uses for their land – land successfully claimed under the Aboriginal Land Rights (ALR) Act, 1983 (NSW).

The 2019 reform package included the following documents:
  • The Interim Darkinjung Development Delivery Plan (DDP) (PDF, 2 MB) which has since been superseded by the final Development Delivery Plan approved on 16 December 2022.
  • A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was established between the Department and Darkinjung in February 2019. The MOU is an agreement between the NSW Government and Darkinjung that sets out how the organisations will work together to create the pipeline of Darkinjung development projects.
  • A Darkinjung Delivery Framework Consultation Paper (PDF, 2.3 MB) outlining the inter-related measures - including an explanation of intended effect of the SEPP - received overwhelming support when exhibited from 16 November to 14 December 2018.

More information


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Page last updated: 19/01/2023