Planning bulletins

Planning bulletins provide advice on legislation, planning practice, subdivision and development control, and policy positions of the Western Australian Planning Commission (WAPC).

Parliament House precinct planning bulletin

This Planning Bulletin aims to recognise the significance of Parliament and reinforce the unique role Parliament Hill plays in the structure of the City. It outlines measures to maintain views of Parliament House from the City, maintain views over the Swan River from the terraces of Parliament House; and control the appearance of the Parliament House Precinct.

3 - Notifications on titles (memorials)

The purpose of this planning bulletin is to set out circumstances when prospective landowners can be warned of a hazard or other factor that affects the use and enjoyment of the land.

The WAPC is now able to ensure that when land is being subdivided, and the land is affected by a hazard or other factor which affects the use and enjoyment of the land, the prospective owners of the land can be warned of the situation.

This planning bulletin sets out the circumstances under which such a warning is needed, and the processes which are to be carried out to effect the warning.

7 - Government sewerage policy Perth metropolitan region

This planning bulletin is under review

The Western Australian Government has released the draft Government Sewerage Policy 2016, which amalgamates the Government Sewerage Policy Perth Metropolitan Region and the draft country Sewerage policy into one document for public comment.

The draft Government Sewerage Policy 2016 promotes reticulated sewerage as the best disposal method for sewage. It requires all new subdivision and development to be connected to reticulated sewerage where available or considered necessary on health, environment or planning grounds.

The draft policy provides flexibility for low risk proposals such as subdivision in country towns without a reticulated sewerage scheme, or where a scheme is at capacity and unlikely to be expanded.

The final policy will guide future strategic planning, subdivision and development for the provision of sewage disposal in Western Australia.

Planning bulletin 7 is suspended until the policy is finalised.

This bulletin supersedes planning bulletin 6.

10 - Geotechnical reports for subdivisions

The purpose of this planning bulletin is to advise local government and client bodies of the matters to be considered in respect of the need for geotechnical reports.

The WAPC has been requested to reconsider the need for geotechnical reports as pre-requisites to subdivision approvals.

21 - Cash-in-lieu of public open space

The purpose of this planning bulletin is to outline the purposes for which cash-in-lieu of public open space given up under section 20C of the Town Planning and Development Act 1928 may be expended.

This planning bulletin is complementary to the following:

  • Policy DC 2.3 Public Open Space in Residential Areas
  • Policy DC 4.1 Industrial and Commercial Subdivision
  • Policy DC 3.4 Rural Land Use Planning Policy
  • Advice Note 2 of 1993 Review of Public Open Space Provision in Respect of Small Subdivisions.


33 - Rights-of-way or laneways in established areas

This planning bulletin establishes the WAPC's policy, practice and procedures regarding residential and commercial development and subdivision (including strata and survey-strata) adjoining existing rights-of-way (or laneways).

The development of rights-of-way in “greenfield” subdivisions in new urban areas, or on large urban infill sites within developed areas, is addressed in the WAPC’s Development Control Policy 1.7 - General Road Planning and Liveable Neighbourhoods.

37 - Draft Model text provisions for structure plans

The purpose of this planning bulletin is to seek comment on draft model text provisions for structure plans.

The draft provisions are included in schedule 1 attached to this planning bulletin. The draft provisions set out a clear and consistent procedure for the preparation, assessment, advertising, approval and modification of structure plans. The draft provisions also introduce the concept of detailed area plans.

Following consideration of comments and finalisation, it is intended to introduce the draft provisions as regulations.

49 - Caravan parks

The intent of this bulletin is to support the provision of caravan parks within Western Australia by facilitating greater flexibility in the design and composition of new or redeveloped caravan parks, while delivering quality land use planning outcomes.

This bulletin, to be applied on a case-by-case basis, provides guidance on matters to be taken into consideration in planning for caravan parks, including the development of new or redevelopment of existing parks. This position provides a more flexible approach to encourage and support investment in the caravan park industry.

Key planning objectives for caravan parks are to:

  • ensure the development and long term retention of caravan parks as a form of short stay (affordable) accommodation primarily for leisure tourists
  • recognise that the commercial sustainability of caravan parks requires some flexibility in product mix, site design and risk mitigation approaches
  • plan for and facilitate growth in the caravan park industry
  • ensure the compatibility of short stay and long stay uses of caravan parks through appropriate separation
  • encourage the development and redevelopment of caravan parks in a manner that responds appropriately to the environment, economy and context, and maintains a minimum standard
  • ensure any new caravan parks are located appropriately to their intended market, function and context
52 - Process for seeking approval under the Strata Titles Act 1985 (and Planning and Development Act 2005) for strata titles and delegation to local government of built strata applications

This planning bulletin consolidates and updates previous bulletins relating to strata subdivision, outlining the WAPC policy, practice and procedures in relation to strata title subdivision.

The bulletin also outlines the new delegation arrangements adopted by the WAPC regarding applications for the issuing of a certificate of approval for subdivision of built strata. These new arrangements are part of a series of changes being implemented to improve and streamline the planning approvals process.

This bulletin supersedes planning bulletins 14, 19, 52 and 58.

67 - Guidelines for wind farm development

This planning bulletin is intended to provide local government, other relevant approval authorities and wind farm developers with a guide to the planning framework for the balanced assessment of land-based wind farm developments, throughout the state

For land use planning purposes, a wind farm or wind energy facility, can be defined as any turbine, building or other structure used in, or in conjunction with, the generation of electricity by wind force. This planning bulletin is not intended to apply to turbines used principally to supply electricity for a domestic property, rural use of the land or anemometers.

This bulletin supersedes planning bulletin 59

69 - Bush Forever areas

Bush Forever is a whole-of-government policy for the conservation of regionally significant bushland on the Swan Coastal Plain portion of the Perth Metropolitan Region.

This bulletin is to update and explain the package of planning instruments for Bush Forever, and outline the referral process for proposals to ensure that bushland protection and management issues are appropriately considered and addressed in planning decisions in the Perth metropolitan region. 

70 - Caretakers' dwellings in industrial areas

This planning bulletin highlight’s the issues associated with the establishment of caretakers’ dwellings in the State and to outline a policy for dealing consistently with this demand through local planning strategies, local planning schemes and policy provisions.

Although the Bulletin has been prepared largely in response to emerging regional issues where there is a greater demand for caretakers’ dwellings, it can be equally applied to the metropolitan region. However, the WAPC acknowledges the significant differences between metropolitan and regional local government areas throughout the State and the need to accommodate a range of responses to this issue

71 - Residential leasehold estates and developments

The purpose of this planning bulletin is to clarify the obligations of the WAPC in respect of determination of proposals for long term leases of land and buildings and to advise of relevant planning considerations in respect of residential leasehold.

The WAPC also seek comment from the public, industry and local government concerning relevant issues and the WAPC’s policies and practices.

72 - Child care centres

The purpose of this planning bulletin is to outline a consistent policy approach to planning for childcare centres.

The purpose of this planning bulletin is to:

  • differentiate between child care related activities operating in existing residential area, such as family day care that takes place in dwellings, and non-residential child care activities
  • outline a consistent policy approach to planning for child care centres
  • advise of planning considerations in relation to the location and development of child care centres.

The bulletin has been prepared in consultation with the Department for Child Protection, Department for Communities, Department of Health, Department of Environment and Conservation and local government.

The bulletin supersedes Planning Bulletin 72 Child-care Centres (June 2005) and the planning guidelines included in it.

80 - Swan Valley Planning Legislation Amendment Act 2006

The bulletin explains the changes to the Swan Valley Planning Act 1995, the Planning and Development Act 2005 and the Metropolitan Region Scheme.

The Amendment Act amends the Swan Valley Planning Act 1995 to provide a strengthened framework that will protect the rural character of the Swan Valley and ensure it remains as a place of beauty and a recreation destination for current and future generations.

Copies of the Amendment Act and SVP Act are available from:

State Law Publisher
10 William Street
Perth 6000
Phone: (08) 6552 6000
Fax: (08) 9321 7536

In addition, the Amendment Act and SVP Act are available on line from the State Law Publisher.

83 - Planning for tourism

This planning bulletin was substantially revised and released on 19 July 2011 with a ministerial commitment to monitor and review in 12 months’ time. This review is now complete, and the bulletin updated with minor amendments.

This bulletin sets out the policy position of the WAPC on tourism development within the State and will guide decision-making by the WAPC and local government on subdivision, development and scheme amendment proposals for tourism purposes.

This policy position provides a more strategic and flexible approach to tourism planning to encourage and support investment in the industry.

The policy position:

  • provides for a strategic focus of broader planning concepts such as locations and precincts to replace the existing “strategic” and “non-strategic” tourism sites
  • places greater emphasis on the local planning framework in addressing regional and local tourism issues and land use planning objectives
  • highlights that local governments may set a limit to residential development as part of tourism sites within their local planning strategy or a local planning policy
  • encourages developers to consider other non-tourist development (such as commercial, retail, conference/reception centre, restaurant/café) within tourism sites, before or at the very least in conjunction with any residential component.
87 - High pressure gas transmission pipelines in the Perth metropolitan region

This planning bulletin provides guidance on matters to be taken into account in considering planning proposals.

This planning bulletin provides guidance on matters to be taken into account by the WAPC, local governments and applicants in considering planning proposals in the vicinity of the Dampier to Bunbury Natural Gas Pipeline and the Parmelia Gas Pipeline, in the Perth metropolitan region.

This bulletin applies to the Perth metropolitan region as defined by the Metropolitan Region Scheme. It applies to schemes, scheme amendments, structure planning, subdivision or development, except for conventional agricultural or rural pursuits, within the vicinity of the Dampier to Bunbury Natural Gas Pipeline corridor and the Parmelia Gas Pipeline easement.

91 - Restrictive covenants

This planning bulletin explains the concept of restrictive covenants and outlines their use in the planning system.

It is intended as a broad overview of the concept of restrictive covenants. Further advice should always be obtained in relation to particular circumstances

94 - Approval requirements for public works and development by public authorities

This planning bulletin assists users of the planning system in understanding the development approval process for public works throughout the state.

It also outlines when a body must obtain WAPC approval to undertake development under a region scheme.

This bulletin supersedes planning bulletin 53.

97 - Proposed street tree and utility planning amendments to Liveable Neighbourhoods and Development Control Policy 1.3 Strata titles

This planning bulletin explains proposed changes to the street trees and utility planning clauses in Liveable Neighbourhoods and Development Control Policy 1.3 Strata Titles.

The objectives of the proposed amendments are to ensure:

  • road verges are of sufficient width to continue to accommodate all transport requirements, street trees, paths, utilities and services now and in the future
  • flexibility in the road reserve for future changes in services, transport and future densification
  • that street trees are planted and maintained.
99 - Holiday homes guidelines

This planning bulletin provides greater certainty for the local government and the growing holiday home sector.

The guidelines have been developed in response to the growing number of holiday homes - particularly in popular tourism destinations - over the past decade.

The guidelines propose possible changes to local planning schemes and the preparation of policies tailored to address specific issues encountered by local governments in their region.

Other key proposals include:

  • holiday homes being formalised as a land use class in local planning schemes
  • local governments developing local planning policies on holiday homes
  • the identification of preferred areas for holiday homes.

Holiday Homes Guidelines - short stay use of residential dwellings

100 - State Planning Policy 3.6 Development contributions for infrastructure

This planning bulletin provides an overview of State Planning Policy 3.6 Development Contributions for Infrastructure which was gazetted on 20 November 2009.

SPP 3.6 consolidates and expands on Planning Bulletin 18 Developer Contributions for Infrastructure and Planning Bulletin 41 Draft Model Text Provisions for Development Contributions. These planning bulletins are superceded by SPP 3.6 which:

  • sets out development contribution provisions for standard infrastructure items applied by the WAPC on the subdivision, strata subdivision, or development of land
  • provides a consistent, accountable and transparent system for local governments to plan and charge for community infrastructure items which are not included in the standard provisions through development contribution plans.
102 - Section 76 of the Planning and Development Act 2005

As part of the Government’s commitment to streamlining and improving the planning approvals process in Western Australia, the WA Parliament passed Approvals and Related Reforms (No. 4) (Planning) Act 2010 (the 2010 Amendment Act). The 2010 Amendment Act contained a number of amendments to the Planning and Development Act 2005 that are designed to improve the planning system.

The previous provisions under section 76 allowed the Minister to direct a local government to prepare or adopt a local planning scheme. The 2010 Amendment Act clarifies that the Minister can also direct a local government to prepare or adopt an amendment to a local planning scheme. The amendments under section 76 substantially commenced on 22 November 2010.

104 - Improvement schemes and plans

As part of the Government’s commitment to streamlining and improving the planning approvals process in Western Australia, the WA Parliament passed the Approvals and Related Reforms (No. 4) (Planning) Act 2010 (2010 Amendment Act) in August 2010. The 2010 Amendment Act contains a number of amendments to the Planning and Development Act 2005 (PD Act), which are designed to improve the planning system.

One key reform is the expansion of the power under section 119 of the PD Act to create an improvement plan over land that is subject to a region planning scheme. When the amendments in the 2010 Amendment Act come into effect, the WAPC will have the power to make an improvement plan anywhere in the State. Amendments to the preparation process for improvement plans have been made to improve transparency in the exercise of this power. As such, the WAPC is required to consult with local governments before an improvement plan is made. In addition, the Minister is required to lay a copy of the improvement plan before each House of Parliament following gazettal.

The other key reform in the 2010 Amendment Act is the introduction of a new power, allowing the WAPC to create improvement schemes to give effect to the development control powers of an improvement plan. These new types of schemes will be created by the WAPC as if they are local planning schemes, and will be subject to the same consultation and advertising requirements as local planning schemes are currently subject to. They will override local and region planning schemes over the subject land for the duration of the improvement scheme.

105 - Section 126 - Zoning amended by regional planning schemes

This planning bulletin is part of the planning reform process and the Government’s commitment to streamlining and improving the planning approvals process in Western Australia. The purpose of the planning bulletin is to provide an update as to the object and operation of concurrent amendments made to both region planning schemes and local planning schemes pursuant to section 126 of Planning and Development Act 2005.

107 - New model subdivision conditions

The Model Subdivision Condition Schedule is an essential tool used by the WAPC, to ensure compliance with the statutory and policy responsibilities of the WAPC in granting approval to subdivide land into freehold, survey strata and strata titles.

The Model Subdivision Conditions Schedule is to be used by referral agencies in response to WAPC subdivision referrals to assist in the timely determination of applications.

A review of the current Model Subdivision Conditions Schedule (January 2009) has been undertaken, resulting in the release of a new Schedule adopted by the WAPC.

108 - Layout plans

This planning bulletin clarifies the processes and procedures regarding layout plan amendment, ratification and the incorporation of 'no-go' exclusion boundaries.

110 - Guidance on the processing of built strata title applications

This planning bulletin has been released to provide greater guidance to local government and other relevant stakeholders relating to the current operation of the WAPC’s delegation to local government for the determination of certain classes of built strata subdivision proposals. The planning bulletin has been prepared with assistance from the Surveying and Spatial Sciences Institute, Western Australian Local Government Association, Landgate and other relevant stakeholders.

The planning bulletin includes a process flowchart, use of standard conditions/templates and outlines key considerations for the processing of built strata applications to assist local government and other stakeholders to achieve application assessment and determination consistency.

An outstanding matter relates to local government delegation reporting arrangements, which is envisaged to be addressed as part of phase 2 planning reform project and the future introduction of a new electronic lodgement reporting system. Once introduced, the electronic lodgement reporting system will enable local government to easily report on built strata application determinations and facilitates data for land/housing supply forecasting and monitoring purposes.

111 - Planning in bushfire prone areas

This planning bulletin supersedes the previous Planning Bulletin PB 111/2015.

The bulletin provides guidance to assist with the interpretation and implementation of the Planning and Development (Local Planning Schemes) Regulations 2015, State Planning Policy 3.7 Planning in Bushfire Prone Areas (SPP 3.7) and the Guidelines for Planning in Bushfire Prone Areas.

The revised Planning Bulletin clarifies:

  • when SPP 3.7 should apply to proposals for habitable buildings or uses
  • when SPP 3.7 should apply to renovations, alterations, extensions, improvements or repairs of habitable buildings
  • when SPP 3.7 should apply to subdivision applications
  • the requirements applicable to subdivision and development applications assessed against SPP 3.7
  • the meaning of habitable buildings and development site for the purposes of applying the LPS Regulations to areas designated as bushfire prone.
112 - Medium-density single house development standards – development zones

This planning bulletin outlines acceptable variations to the deemed-to-comply provisions of the Residential Design Codes (R-Codes) for medium-density single houses in development areas, and required methods for implementation, for consistent application across Western Australia. 

113 - Multiple Dwellings in R40 coded areas and variation to R-Codes multiple dwelling development standards

This planning bulletin outlines acceptable local planning scheme amendment proposals that seek to control multiple dwellings in R40 coded areas and variation to multiple dwelling standards for consistent application throughout Western Australia.

Page last reviewed 25 November 2018
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