Tuesday, 30 July 2019 14:59

Councils collaborate on cool LEPs

Council staff brainstorming. Council staff brainstorming.

WSROC and NSROC have teamed up to provide guidance to councils to integrate urban heat objectives into the current LEP Review process being undertaken by Sydney councils.

With the collaboration of staff from seven councils, the ROCs engaged a planning consultant to help develop standard clauses that councils can use in their Local Strategic Planning Statements (LSPS) and Local Environment Plans (LEPs).

It is hoped that developing standard clauses and definitions will not only promote a more regionally consistent approach to mitigating urban heat islands, but also send a strong message to the NSW Government that heat is a priority issue for councils.

Many councils will have now submitted their draft Local Strategic Planning Statement (LSPS) for public consultation which is the first stage of reviewing local planning controls. The next step will be the Local Environment Plan.

WSROC President Cr Barry Calvert said “The LEP Review is the first step in our work addressing Action 4 of the Turn Down the Heat Strategy ‘Land use and design controls that prioritise resilience’.

“While we hope that consistency at the local level will improve planning outcomes, local planning controls alone will not solve this issue. To achieve the best possible outcome for our communities, there needs to be consistency across state and federal controls as well.

“This is particularly the case in Western Sydney where much of our new growth falls under complying and state significant development. These developments are not determined at the local government level,” said Cr Calvert.

“WSROC will be strongly advocating for all levels of government to adopt resilience measures in their planning instruments however this will take some time to achieve.

Further work also is needed to determine which planning controls will achieve the best outcomes for different developments. Some of these answers will be realised via the Cool Suburbs program, and others will come at a later date; once the LEP Review has been completed.

“Meeting the extremely short timeframes for the LEP Review has been a major challenge for councils, so we need to be realistic about what can be achieved as part of this process.

"That said, the current review is a good foundation on which we can build the strategies and controls that will deliver cooler communities,” said Cr Calvert.

Last modified on Wednesday, 31 July 2019 15:11