NSW Department of Planning and Environment

The Hunter Regional Plan 2036 is the NSW Government’s strategy for guiding land use planning decisions for the Hunter Region.


The Hunter region consists of 10 local government areas: Port Stephens, Newcastle, Lake Macquarie, Cessnock, Maitland, Dungog, MidCoast, Singleton, Muswellbrook and the Upper Hunter.


The 2036 plan is currently under review with a draft plan on exhibition in November 2021. To receive updates, register your details.


Hunter Expressway Strategy

The Hunter Expressway is a $1.7 billion, 40km stretch of motorway connecting communities across the Hunter with links into the national transport and freight network between Queensland, Yohaaba/Port of Newcastle, Greater Sydney and Western NSW It comprises six interchanges to maximise accessibility to commercial, industrial and residential hubs and optimise investment and employment opportunities.


The department has worked in close collaboration with Transport for NSW and local councils in the development of a draft strategy for the Hunter Expressway that sets out the vision and land uses for the six interchanges to optimise investment, job creation and accessibility.


The draft Hunter Expressway Strategy was on public exhibition from 18 December 2020 until 26 February 2021. To find out more, please visit our Planning Portal.


What's happened so far?

Implementing the plan

Responsibility for implementing actions and monitoring the intended outcomes in the Regional Plan is shared with our important regional stakeholders, including councils, other State agencies, service providers and the development industry. All stakeholders need to have a good understanding of the priorities and the deliverables.


The Hunter and Central Coast Development Corporation will oversee implementation of the vision, goals and actions in the Regional Plan. An annual monitoring report will be prepared to outline progress against the implementation plan.


The purpose of this Implementation Plan is to:

  • ensure ongoing collaboration and agreement on the implementation of actions;
  • assign accountabilities for the implementation of actions;
  • explain the role of different groups and committees involved in implementation;
  • guide the Hunter and Central Coast Development Corporation in its role of overseeing delivery of the Regional Plan; and
  • inform the Annual Monitoring Report.


Download the Hunter Plan Regional Implementation Plan 2016-2018 (PDF, 364KB)


Greater Newcastle Metropolitan Planning

The Hunter Regional Plan 2036 set the vision for the Hunter to be the leading regional economy in Australia with a vibrant new metropolitan city at its heart.


This first-ever Greater Newcastle Metropolitan Plan delivers a collaborative framework for a significant part of the Regional Plan by setting out the outcomes and strategies to be an integrated metropolitan city.


The Metropolitan Plan provides the strategies and actions to deliver on the vision, create great places across Greater Newcastle and align infrastructure and services in catalyst areas. This plan is intended to be reviewed in 2023. 


Hunter Urban Development Program

The Hunter Urban Development Program (UDP) is the NSW Government’s blueprint for managing land and housing supply and assisting infrastructure coordination in the Hunter Region.


The UDP helps inform strategic planning and guides infrastructure planning and service delivery to support new housing development for a growing population.


We collaborate with councils, industry and agency representatives in preparing the Hunter UDP.


Greater Newcastle UDP 2018-19 Annual Report

In February 2020, we released the Greater Newcastle UDP 2018-19 Annual Report. The report is the first release of data on existing housing and land supply for the region. It focuses on the local government areas of Cessnock, Lake Macquarie, Maitland, Newcastle and Port Stephens.


Download the Urban Development Program 2018-19 (PDF, 3.7MB)


Future Hunter UDP releases

We are working to extend the UDP to the remaining local government areas in the Hunter Region. This will build on data that is already being collected. For example: building approval data is available for all local government areas in the Hunter Region through the department’s Metropolitan Housing Monitor.


Monitoring reports

In 2018 and 2019, we published monitoring reports for the regional plan.


Monitoring reports provide an overview of work undertaken by the NSW Government, local councils and other stakeholders to implement the Hunter Regional Plan 2036.


Both reports identify key achievements for delivering on the goals, directions and actions of the Regional Plan and outline progress on the delivery of priority actions over the period. The reports also outline the work plan that will be progressed over the next 12 months:


Want to know more?

For more information on the delivery of the Hunter Regional Plan, you can:

  • contact the team via email
  • register your details to receive email updates on the project:

Page last updated: 01/12/2021