Port Macquarie, Coffs Harbour, Lismore and Tweed Heads are North Coast regional cities that are popular places to live and work. More than three-quarters of the region’s population growth over the next 20 years is projected to occur in the local government areas of these four regional cities.
The North Coast Regional Plan 2036 identified the preparation of Regional City Action Plans (RCAPs) for these cities as a priority action to provide a framework to manage and shape the cities’ growth.
RCAPs ensure strategic planning that will:
- Promote employment growth, greater housing diversity and affordability.
- Promote new job opportunities that complement existing employment nodes around education, health and airport precincts.
- Identify infrastructure constraints and public domain improvements that can make areas more attractive for investment.
- Deliver infrastructure and coordinate the most appropriate staging and sequencing of development.
The department is working in close collaboration with councils to focus on activating CBDs of the region’s cities to coordinate investment and infrastructure so that they become vibrant cosmopolitan hubs that will underpin the delivery of more than 32,700 homes and a significant number of new jobs to the North Coast region.
A steering committee with representatives from each council has been established to oversee the coordination and implementation of the finalised RCAPs.
The Coffs Harbour Regional City Action Plan (Coffs Harbour RCAP) (PDF, 12.7 MB) was the first of the action plans to be finalised, following extensive consultation that included public exhibition of a draft plan from 5 June 2020 to 3 July 2020.
The RCAP was developed by the NSW Government, in collaboration with Coffs Harbour City Council to manage and shape the city’s growth to 2036.
The RCAP is working to harness and build on Coffs Harbour’s growth as an entrepreneurial centre, strong employment base, diversified economy and coastal lifestyle hub.
The RCAP responds to the expected population growth with a coordinated approach to align infrastructure delivery with sustainable housing in ways that make best use of available land and access to services.
The plan is based around five goals: Meet, Move, Play, Work and Live and includes 20 objectives to achieve these goals via a coordinated approach to land-use planning and infrastructure delivery.
Note: The Coffs Harbour RCAP PDF file above is large (13 MB) and may take some time to download.
For more information about the Coffs Harbour RCAP, the community consultation process and engagement activities you can:
The Port Macquarie Regional City Action Plan (PDF, 11.7 MB) has been developed by the NSW Government, in collaboration with Port Macquarie-Hastings Council, to help Port Macquarie fulfil its potential as a thriving regional centre and build on the city’s growth, strong employment base, diversified economy and local character.
The RCAP was finalised following extensive consultation including public exhibition of a draft plan from 9 March 2021 to 30 April 2021.
The plan is based around five goals: Live, Work, Move, Meet and Play and includes 17 objectives to achieve these goals via a coordinated approach to land-use planning and infrastructure delivery.
The RCAP will create more green spaces for koalas to thrive. It will help council map out existing koala corridors as part of a Koala Recovery Strategy.
It will improve public spaces by developing an interconnected green grid of walkways, cycleways and parks to increase tree canopy.
The final plan also leverages the city’s position along the Pacific and Oxley Highways. This will attract investment, encourage tourism and create more jobs.
In addition, housing affordability is addressed. This will ensure a steady supply and mixture of homes to cater for future population growth.
For more information about the Port Macquarie RCAP, the community consultation process and engagement activities you can:
The Lismore Regional City Action Plan (PDF, 20.9 MB) was prepared in close collaboration with Lismore City Council to provide a framework to manage and shape the growth of the Northern Rivers capital to make it one of the best places to live, work and play in Australia.
The RCAP was finalised following extensive consultation including public exhibition of a draft plan from 17 May 2021 to 15 June 2021.
The final RCAP was delivered before the floods that devastated many homes and businesses in Lismore during February and March 2022.
However, the RCAP contains ongoing planning measures to build resilience and protect people and property against future flood events in Lismore.
The RCAP strives to deliver a vibrant, innovative city with a lively Wilsons River waterfront and green corridors, integrated transport systems and the development of health, education and professional services precincts.
It will maximise opportunities for jobs and investment while also ensuring future housing needs are met to cater for a variety of lifestyle choices and needs. Lismore’s bushland and green corridors provide habitat for many species, including koalas and the RCAP comprises a number of initiatives to help koalas thrive.
The plan is based around five goals: Live, Work & Learn, Meet, Play & Protect and Move and includes 18 objectives to achieve these goals via a coordinated approach to land-use planning and infrastructure delivery.
The plan also identifies priorities for additional investment opportunities such as infrastructure and public spaces to help manage changes while protecting the city’s unique character and lifestyle.
For more information about the Lismore RCAP, the community consultation process and engagement activities you can:
The Tweed Regional City Action Plan (PDF, 12.4 MB has been prepared in close collaboration with Tweed Shire Council to deliver a vibrant, connected city brimming with jobs, investment and lively public spaces that tap into the natural beauty of its subtropical surrounds.
The Tweed RCAP provides a framework to manage and shape the growth of NSW’s great green city of the north to make it one of the best places to live in Australia.
The plan aims to ensure future housing requirements are met to cater for a variety of lifestyle choices and needs. It also includes actions to strengthen Tweed’s resilience against natural hazards, such as floods, improve transport connections, and ensure development is directed to the right areas.
Feedback from the community, government agencies, business groups and other stakeholders during public exhibition of the draft Tweed RCAP from 26 October 2021 to 23 November 2021 helped us to better understand the opinions, ideas and concerns of the community, which informed the final plan.
The department will work with Tweed Shire Council, other government agencies and community groups to implement the RCAP’s actions to realise its objectives.
For more information about the Tweed RCAP, the community consultation process and engagement activities you can: