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NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment
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The NSW Government is building a faster, simpler planning system to support jobs, homes and open space.


As part of the Planning Reform Action Plan, we are proposing to speed up the process for changing planning rules on a particular piece of land – known as rezoning.


The reforms include new ways to:

  • cut the time it takes to process a proposal to change planning rules by a third by 2023
  • establish an appeals pathway for planning proposals to overcome delays and progress rezonings that are consistent with strategic plans.


What are we doing?

We are exhibiting a discussion paper on a new approach to rezonings for feedback. The proposals in the discussion paper simplify the system to cut timeframes and create investment certainty.


Why are we doing it?

Over time the rezoning process has become complex, leading to unnecessary delays and higher costs.


How are we doing it?

Our proposals:

  • simplify process and minimise duplication
  • create more certainty and consistency
  • improve transparency and trust
  • improve the quality of proposals
  • reduce processing timeframes
  • empower councils to make decisions on matters important to their local communities
  • allow the NSW Government to deal with matters where government intervention is beneficial
  • recognise private proponents in the process and giving recourse opportunities.

We have worked closely with industry, council and Land and Environment Court users to develop a proposed new approach for rezoning and an appeal or review pathway on the final decision.


Our intention is for the new approach to start in 2022.


Download the Discussion paper (PDF, 3.0 MB)

Watch a webinar introducing the new approach to rezonings.

How does the discussion paper link with the new Local Environmental Plan Making Guideline?

The NSW Government has announced a new Local Environmental Plan (LEP) Making Guideline which includes guidance on new planning processes and timeframes relating to the existing planning proposal process.


While the Guideline aims to deliver immediate benefits, the feedback received over the last year has also identified an opportunity to build on these improvements and look at long term and system wide reform of the rezoning process.


The Discussion Paper: A New Approach to Rezonings has been drafted to canvass and seek feedback on a proposed new approach to LEP amendments.

How does the discussion paper link with the Minister's Statement of expectations?

On 26 November 2021, the Minister for Planning and Public Spaces signed the Environmental Planning and Assessment (Statement of Expectations) Order 2021 (Order).


The new Order explains the Minister’s expectations about councils’ performance when dealing with three key planning and development areas:

  • Development assessment
  • Planning proposals
  • Strategic planning obligations


The Order aims to improve the performance of councils existing processes and relates to circumstances where a planning administrator or regional panel can be appointed. It is not directly related to the New Approach to Rezonings Discussion Paper which proposes longer term reforms for feedback.

Have your say on a new approach to rezonings

Visit the planning portal to view the documents and provide feedback.


More information

Email the policy team at

Page last updated: 19/01/2022