A NSW Government website

Land acquisition review

There are times when government agencies need to acquire land for public purposes such as public infrastructure. The Land acquisition review will consider how to improve the acquisition process for all involved.

The NSW Government wants the process to be fair, easy to understand and transparent. The government aims to strike the right balance between landowners’ rights and delivering essential public infrastructure.


The Land Acquisition (Just Terms Compensation) Act 1991 (the Just Terms Act) sets out the processes that the government must follow to acquire land from a landowner for a public purpose. The government can do this compulsorily or by agreement.

A public purpose may include the development of public roads, public transport, airports, schools or hospitals.


The department consulted key government agencies and acquiring authorities, including local councils, in late-2023. The department received 31 submissions with over 400 individual comments. We consolidated these into key themes and have drafted a discussion paper detailing possible areas for improvement.

The discussion paper (PDF, 1.9 MB) was published on the NSW Government's Have Your Say webpage for community feedback between 22 March and 3 May 2024.

Members of the community and interested stakeholders were encouraged to respond to the discussion paper and give suggestions on possible reforms to the Just Terms Act and whole of government acquisition processes.

During this time information sessions were held in Sydney, Hunter, North Coast, South Coast, Central West and Riverina regions, as well as online sessions.

Next steps

After the department analyses feedback from the public consultation, it will recommend to the government ways to improve:

  • the Just Terms Act
  • whole-of-government processes and procedures for land acquisition.

Current review

The NSW Government, led by the Department of Planning, Housing and Infrastructure, is:

  • conducting a review of the Just Terms Act, taking into account the concerns raised in the Parliamentary Inquiry into the acquisition of land in relation to major transport projects
  • reviewing the whole-of-government approach to property acquisitions
  • ensuring that NSW Government agencies and the public are involved in this review through consultation.

The review will consider matters raised by government, non-government, and industry groups, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and the public.

Parliamentary inquiry

The Parliamentary Inquiry into the acquisition of land in relation to major transport projects reviewed acquisition of land by Transport for NSW and related agencies in relation to major transport projects. This was done by the Legislative Council Portfolio Committee No.6, which tabled its report on 10 August 2022.

The inquiry made 10 recommendations. Of these:

  • 2 recommendations were supported
  • 7 were supported in-principle
  • a further recommendation was directed to the Legislative Council, so did not require a response.

Email questions about the review to [email protected]

Review process

Start of the review

Government consultation

Public consultation

22 March to 3 May

Now closed

Have your say – a public consultation with all stakeholders.


Compile feedback and prepare any suggested changes and process improvements.

Mid- to late-2024

Present recommendations for the government to consider.

Recommendations to government