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Penrith Lakes

Priority growth areas and precincts

Penrith Lakes will be a key piece of regional open space in the Western Parkland City, with a world-class sporting and recreational identity. We are committed to making Penrith Lakes a destination to play, relax, work and visit. 

Penrith Lakes is governed by the Chapter 5 Penrith Lakes Scheme of the State Environmental Planning Policy (Precincts – Western Parkland City) 2021 (hereafter referred to as Penrith Lakes Scheme policy).

Penrith Lakes Scheme – 2023 State Environmental Planning Policy Amendment

A draft SEPP amendment was exhibited from 14 August to 26 September 2021 (Exhibited SEPP). The exhibition package   included a consultation report, site identification maps and the requests for rezoning submitted by Penrith Lakes Development Corporation (now known as Western Sydney Lakes), Lakeside Studios and Sydney Helicopters. 

The 2023 State Environmental Planning Policy (SEPP) amendment to the Penrith Lakes Scheme has now been finalised. 

It facilitates additional small-scale employment and tourism and recreation opportunities within Penrith Lakes. The final 2023 SEPP amendment includes the following: 

  • Adoption of new land use mapping to align zoning boundaries with current cadastre boundaries.
  • New provisions to protect key vistas and view corridors. 
  • Stronger flood evacuation provisions applying to development on land below the level of a probable maximum flood within the Site.
  • Provisions for the Planning Secretary to assess a proposed development to determine:
    • whether there is an impact on existing State public infrastructure 
    • whether there is a need for additional State public infrastructure to support a development.     
  • Permission for new land uses at the below specific locations, with the location identified on either the Additional Permitted Uses (APU) or Key Sites maps: 
    • ‘heliport’ (APU map);
    • ‘office premises’ (APU map); 
    • ‘recreation facility (outdoor) for the purposes of a golf driving range and an outdoor water recreational park (Key Sites map);
    • Golf course (Key Sites map);
    • ‘café or restaurant’ (Key Sites map). 
  • Requirements for development on the foreshore associated with the ‘office premises’ site to provide continuous public access along land identified as ‘foreshore land’. This provision is supported by a new Special Areas map which identifies the ‘foreshore land’. 

The following uses outlined in the Exhibited SEPP are not recommended to proceed:

  • Film production precinct – a high intensity use that would pose an unacceptable evacuation risk
  • Solar access provisions – detailed solar access provisions are contained within the Stage 1 Development Control Plan. A general control requiring development to not impact the amenity of the foreshore is included in the Amending SEPP 2023.
  • Listing of ‘Landers Inn’ as a local heritage item – further investigation is required prior to listing as a local heritage item in the SEPP as only the stables is listed in Penrith LEP 1991.

The Penrith Lakes Scheme policy includes a Land Zoning Map that shows what is permissible at the site. The 2023 State Environmental Planning Policy amendment introduces additional land uses that are shown on the Key Sites map and Additional Permitted Uses map. These are outlined below.

Find more information related to this amendment at the NSW Planning Portal.

Development Control Plans applying to the Penrith Lakes Scheme

Currently, there is one Development Control Plan (DCP) applying to the Penrith Lakes Scheme. The Penrith Lakes Development Control Plan – Stage 1 (DCP) provides the development framework and design considerations for Tourism and Employment zoned land. It provides guidance on: 

  • Landscaping and tree canopy – to protect and frame views, increase canopy cover, promote biodiversity, ecological conservation and natural landscape amenity
  • Views and vistas – to protect the Penrith Lakes character and preserve views of important landscape elements and heritage items
  • Traffic movement and circulation – to provide new roads and connections to improve accessibility and permeability for all users including private vehicles, pedestrians and cyclists
  • Parking – to ensure the adequate provision of parking in a way that is well designed and integrated with development
  • Stormwater management and water quality controls
  • Consideration of natural hazard risks and environmental values, including flooding, bushfire, site contamination, riparian corridors, waste management, noise, vibration and air quality
  • Urban design and built form controls, including building height, floor space ratio, setback, site coverage, access and heritage.

The 2023 SEPP Amendment introduces additional land uses on land that is not included in the Stage 1 DCP described above. The 2023 SEPP Amendment includes a requirement that before development consent is granted for the golf driving range, outdoor water recreational park, golf course or café or restaurant, a development control plan must be prepared. 

Penrith Lakes Water Management Plan

The department has endorsed the Penrith Lakes Water Management Plan (WMP) (PDF, 3.8 MB).

The WMP is based on research and evidence and ensures good water quality and adequate water quantity for the 723 ha of lakes and the planned 32 ha of wetlands and smaller water bodies at Penrith Lakes.

It will guide future best practice management of the Penrith Lakes Scheme.

There are four key principles within the WMP:

  • water quality management at the source
  • use of detention basins and wetlands to enhance water quality prior to water entering the lakes system
  • diverse land-based ecosystems
  • healthy aquatic ecosystems.