The current planning legislation will be torn up and replaced with a new act as part of the ACT Government’s review of the planning system.
Minister for Planning and Land Management Mick Gentleman said drafting a new act from the ground up was the best way to ensure a more transparent planning system that delivers better outcomes.
“The current legislation has grown complex and cumbersome as changes have been added to it in a piecemeal way,” Mr Gentleman said.
“A new act means starting with a blank slate to build the best possible system that promotes great planning, design and development across Canberra.”
Last November, the government launched its Planning Review and Reform project with half a dozen discussion papers covering system structure and operation, strategic planning, and development controls and assessments.
It said then that the changes proposed would involve much legislative reform, but this is the first time the government has said the current legislation would be scrapped.
The current rules-based planning system has been under fire from many quarters with claims that it is divorced from actual planning policy and other policy areas such as climate change and housing, which results in development outcomes that contradict the government’s own goals.
Chief Planner Ben Ponton has even said the system is broken, and many say it fails to produce good planning outcomes and inhibits innovative development.
Mr Gentleman said the government had heard extensively from the community and industry on how the planning system could be improved, and it was determined to carry out reforms that support the city’s growth while maintaining its valued character.
“We will continue to work with key stakeholders to prepare the draft act,” he said. “We need to get the legislation right so that industry, environmental groups, and the community have trust and confidence in the new system.”
Last month, Mr Gentleman announced that the planning review would include district plans, so information about the ACT’s distinctive suburban areas would be included.
The community will have the opportunity to provide feedback on the draft act when it is released for comment, hopefully by the end of the year.
To learn more, visit the YourSay website.