SA Planning reforms

Now Closed

This online engagement was hosted on YourSAy from 11 December 2020 to 1 February 2021. Find out more about the consultation process. Below is a record of the engagement process.

The South Australian planning system is undergoing significant reform, with the introduction of the Planning Development and Infrastructure Act 2016 (and Regulations) (Act) and a single ‘rule’ book – the Planning and Design Code (the Code) – which will replace the 68 development plans across the State. Reforms relating to outback and rural areas have already been implemented, with reforms to urban areas to become operational in 2021.

You can view more information on the planning reforms section of the PlanSA website.

The planning reforms strengthen the protections for State Heritage Areas and State Heritage Places by:

  • introducing a NEW State Heritage Area Overlay, incorporating the boundaries of the existing 17 State Heritage Areas (SHA) in South Australia, to protect and manage the heritage values of these areas. The State Heritage Area Overlay ensures that changes to, and development within a SHA, are managed in a way that maintains the area’s heritage values. Importantly, the policies in State Heritage Area Overlay take precedence over any applicable Zone and General policies in the Code, and the control over demolition is maintained. Development in the State Heritage Area Overlay that may impact on the heritage values must be referred to the Minister for Heritage for direction (see below).
  • elevating the role of the Minister responsible for the Heritage Places Act 1993 (Minister for Environment and Heritage or delegate) in planning decisions affecting State Heritage Places or within State Heritage Areas to have a power of ‘Direction’. Previously the Minister was only empowered to provide advice.
  • formalising the role of Statements of Significance for State Heritage Areas and Heritage Guidelines for SHAs within the planning system. The State Heritage Area Overlay will link to:
    • the Statement of Heritage Significance for each SHA – these statements set out what is important within the area and are included in the South Australian Heritage Register. It will also inform the matters to be considered by the Minister when providing a ‘Direction’ on development proposals.
    • the Heritage Guidelines for SHAs – these guidelines provide location-specific guidance to the Minister and property owners on how development can be undertaken to ensure heritage values are protected. These guidelines will be published in accordance with the Act, granting them a statutory role in the development assessment process.

In light of the Act and proposed Code, we have begun the task of reviewing and updating the heritage guidelines for all 17 SHAs to ensure they are fit for purpose, consistent with the terminology used in the Code and reflect each area's Statement of Significance. Consultation on other draft updated heritage guidelines will occur in a staged manner.

The draft updated guidelines also incorporate the Statement of Heritage Significance in order to consolidate the heritage values in the one document. This Statement of Significance is already entered into the South Australian Heritage Register and feedback is not sought on this part of the guidelines as it remains unchanged.

PlanSA have put together a fact sheet that explains how the Colonel Light Gardens State Heritage Area will be protected through the Code.

The approved guidelines will be used to guide the development of private land and the public realm in Colonel Light Gardens when the proposed Code commences in 2021.

Development Process

Current process


Proposed process



Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Email this link

Consultation has concluded

<span class="translation_missing" title="translation missing: en.projects.blog_posts.show.load_comment_text">Load Comment Text</span>