Action Plan implementation

The Action Plan outlines a series of early actions, next priorities and future actions.

Timeframe

This approach allows implementation of some changes in the short term, while also commencing work on the more substantial reform initiatives that will be delivered over the medium to long term.

AP-timeline.png

Amendments to the Planning and Development (Local Planning Schemes) Regulations 2015 – which will support the goals and reform initiatives of the Action Plan – are currently being drafted.

The timing and sequencing of the delivery of the 19 reform initiatives will be staged according to the priorities and capacity of government and the wider planning industry, with consideration given to the interdependency of various reform initiatives.

Reform initiative updates

Information regarding the current status of each reform initiative is available below and will be regularly updated by the Reform Delivery Team. 

Planning creates great places for people
A1 Collaborative planning delivers district-level priorities

Current status

A draft framework and principles are being finalised to guide a collaborative process for district-level planning.

A project to pilot this process is planned, with the intention being for State government to partner with one regional and one metropolitan local government. It is anticipated that expressions of interest will be sought from local governments in suitable areas, in mid-2020.

A working group focused on connected and consolidated growth has been established to help shape and refine the outcomes of this reform initiative.

A2 Urban corridors are realised with integrated planning

Current status

The Transport Portfolio Strategic Projects Office is leading preliminary investigations into the development of a movement and place framework for Western Australia.

An interagency steering group, including representatives from the Department of Planning, Lands and Heritage, Department of Transport, Main Roads WA and the Public Transport Authority has been formed to guide the project.

A working group focused on connected and consolidated growth has been established and will consider and provide feedback on the movement and place framework.

A3 Land use and infrastructure planning is coordinated

Current status

A new role of Director, Road Access and Planning was appointed within Main Roads WA in late 2019.

A working group focused on connected and consolidated growth has been established to help shape and refine some elements of this reform initiative.

Draft State Planning Policy 3.6 – Infrastructure Contributions was released for public consultation in 2019. The draft documents are available online. All feedback received is currently being reviewed.

A4 Good design is required and design excellence encouraged

Current status

Draft State Planning Policy 7.2 – Precinct Design and associated design guidelines and proposed changes to the planning framework were released for public comment August 2019. The draft Precinct Design documents can be accessed online.

A good response was received with general support for the concept of precinct design.  All feedback is currently being reviewed with a final policy expected to be released in late 2020.

A new policy for medium density residential development is being developed. The Department hosted a series of workshops with industry stakeholders in early February 2020 to help inform policy development. The draft policy is expected to be released for public comment in mid-2020.

More information regarding the Design WA program and projects is available.

Next steps

A review and update of Liveable Neighbourhoods (draft State Planning Policy 7.1 – Neighbourhood Design) will be commencing shortly, with further consultation and engagement with stakeholders anticipated to occur in the first half of 2020.

Changes to the Planning and Development (Local Planning Schemes) Regulations 2015 – a key part of the Round 1 legislative amendments – will look at ways to embed the establishment of design review panels in legislation, and ensure design review advice is given appropriate consideration in decision-making processes.

Planning is easier to understand and navigate
B1 Planning is strategically-led

Current status

The WAPC is undertaking a review of the state-wide strategic and policy framework to rationalise policies, address overlaps and ensure policy remains aligned with contemporary planning practice.

Of the 28 existing State Planning Policies, 10 are under active review, with a further eight at various stages of consideration and investigation. Six water-related policies are currently being consolidated into a single policy.

Options for ‘risk-based’ assessment and decision-making streams for basic amendments and limited scope reviews of State Planning Policies for trial are also being developed.

B2 Engagement and consultation processes are consistent and effective

Current status

A Development Assessment and Consultation working group - involving industry, local government and private sector representatives – has been established to consider more streamlined and consistent consultation processes for development assessment.

This will include more consistent and standardised consultation and notification requirements for development applications, including the use of onsite advertising signage for development proposals. Testing of initial improvements is expected to commence in 2020.

A new Community Engagement Toolkit to support and improve engagement and consultation practices for local and State planning processes is being developed. Delivery of the first part of the toolkit is expected in late 2020.

B3 Local planning frameworks are more legible

Current status

Round 1 legislative amendments are being progressed. These include changes to the Planning and Development (Local Planning Schemes) Regulations 2015, that will give effect to changes to Local Planning Policies. Consultation on the proposed changes is anticipated to occur later in 2020.

B4 Online planning portal improves access to information

Current status

Some early planning and scoping work has been completed however work towards this initiative is not scheduled to materially commence until some of the early actions are completed.

B5 Clear and concise guidance is readily available

Current status

An Online WA Planning Toolkit is being developed to provide guidance for all users of the planning system. Drafting of the first chapters – focused on local planning strategies, activity centre plans, structure plans and development applications – is underway.

Planning systems are consistent and efficient
C1 Local planning schemes are more consistent

Current status

Round 1 legislative amendments include changes to Schedule 1 – Model provisions for local planning schemes of the Planning and Development (Local Planning Schemes) Regulations 2015. These changes amend some of the existing land use definitions and model zones, and introduce new definitions and zones. Consultation on the proposed changes is anticipated to occur later in 2020.

This initiative more broadly is undergoing project planning.

C2(i) Approvals are quicker and easier for small business in commercial and mixed-use centres

Current status

A trial is underway involving State and local government partnering to develop, test and pilot a framework that simplifies the change-of-use development application process for small business.

Happening in selected inner-city locations, the pilot project aims to identify a more streamlined change-of-use development approval framework for commercial and mixed-use areas.

C2(ii) Car parking requirements in commercial and mixed-use centres are consistent

Current status

Details around this project – which aims to deliver a more consistent approach to carparking requirements in certain areas – are being finalised, with the intention to partner with local government for a trial in late 2020.

C3 Pre-lodgement advice facilitates better outcomes

Current status

The Department is preparing new procedures for trial by planning officers and teams to provide greater consistency of pre-lodgement advice to proponents, local government and users of the planning system.

A Development Assessment and Consultation working group – involving industry, local government and private sector representatives – has been established to consider more streamlined and consistent pre-lodgement practices for development applications. Refinement of these processes and opportunities to trial new arrangements will be considered by this group throughout 2020.

C4 Targeted reduction in timeframes for lower risk proposals

Current status

The Department is identifying opportunities to trial and formalise streamlined processing of minor amendments to structure plans and activity centre plans (soon to become precinct plans under draft State Planning Policy 7.2 – Precinct Design). 

Options for ‘risk-based’ assessment and decision-making streams for basic amendments and limited scope reviews of State Planning Policies are also being developed (see Action Plan initiative B1).

Round 1 legislative amendments also include some changes to the Planning and Development (Local Planning Schemes) Regulations 2015 that address some of the existing issues associated with the basic/standard/complex streams for local planning scheme amendments. Consultation on these amendments is anticipated to occur later in 2020.

More detailed project planning on this initiative is also underway.

C5 Referral processes are well defined and coordinated

Current status 

This initiative is undergoing project planning.

C6 Structure and precinct planning tools are fit-for-purpose 

Current status

Draft State Planning Policy 7.2 – Precinct Design and associated design guidelines and proposed changes to the planning framework were released for public comment August 2019.

The consultation included a discussion paper which presented options for how the draft Precinct Design policy suite should be positioned in the planning system, and the potential changes required to support effective implementation of the new policy framework.

A good response was received with general support for the concept of precinct design. All feedback is currently being reviewed and updates to the draft documents and supporting regulatory changes are being prepared.

The draft Precinct Design documents can be accessed online.

Some improvements to the procedures associated with the processing of structure plans are also proposed as part of the Round 1 legislative amendments. Work on these changes is underway with consultation anticipated to occur later in 2020.

C7 Development assessment processes are streamlined and outcomes-focussed

Current status

A Development Assessment and Consultation working group – involving industry, local government and the private sector – has been established to consider and help shape improvements to the development application process, including pre-lodgement practices, arrangements for additional information requests and voluntary deemed-to-comply checks for single houses. The working group will continue to consider and make recommendations on these improvements, including opportunities to trial new arrangements.

C8 DAP processes are more consistent and transparent 

Current status

Development Assessment Panel (DAP) reporting processes and templates have been reviewed. Improvements aimed at promoting more transparent, effective, and consistent decision-making have been proposed, and are being trialled.

Consideration is also being given to materials required to improve the statement of reasons for decisions.

The State Government will soon consider proposed changes to DAP structures, with reductions in the number of panels likely to commence implementation in mid-2020.

Community guides and tools to more clearly explain DAP processes will be available in the coming months.

 

C9 The WAPC is more efficient and strategically-focussed  

Current status

WAPC meeting agendas and minutes, and selected complete officer reports, are now published online. New arrangements are also being prepared to ensure proponents and key stakeholders are notified in advance of the details of the WAPC or SPC meeting at which the matters of interest to them will be considered.

A Key Matters Coversheet has also been introduced to provide high-level information on confidential statutory planning proposals.

C10 Planning activity data drive system improvements

Current status

A working group was convened in October 2019 to develop the framework for collection, analysis and publication of planning activity data. This Planning Activity Data Initiative Working Group has made progress on both data indictors and collection methods.

Page last reviewed 9 March 2020
Go toTop of the page