A NSW Government website

Planning pathways for cemeteries

Exempt and complying development for cemeteries

The department is proposing a new exempt and complying development framework for maintenance and other minor works in existing cemeteries.

The new framework would allow minor works needed to operate and maintain cemeteries to be undertaken more efficiently without seeking development approval.

The proposed changes are included in an explanation of intended effect that was exhibited for public feedback from 23 October to 19 November 2023.

Find out more by reading our frequently asked questions (PDF, 77 KB).

Thank you for your feedback, which will help inform the final framework.

Cemeteries as state significant development

On 6 May 2022, cemetery projects above a certain size were deemed state significant developments (SSD) to make their assessment clearer and more consistent.

Cemeteries with at least 5,000 new interment sites are now assessed as SSD, in the same way as other social infrastructure such as hospitals and schools.

A statutory review of the NSW cemeteries and crematoria sector was commissioned by the previous NSW Government. The review forecast a critical shortage in burial space, particularly in Greater Sydney, as demand continues to grow. Larger cemeteries can make a substantial contribution to resolving this shortage.

The review recommended the use of the SSD assessment pathway to speed up delivery of cemetery space. The SSD pathway is commonly used to assess development of a range of types of social infrastructure and will provide a consistent approach to assessing larger cemetery proposals.

Schedule 1 of the State Environmental Planning Policy (Planning Systems) 2021 has been amended to enable the change. More information on this amendment, including a summary of submissions received, can be found on the NSW Planning Portal.

More information

For more information email [email protected]