Why is the new Code being developed?

The need for a new planning system was identified by an expert panel in 2014. The Planning and Design Code is a central feature of this new planning system for South Australia, and it will replace the 72 Development Plans that are currently in use into a single set of planning guidelines for assessing development applications across the state.

The Code has been developed to respond to community and business frustration over the complexity of current planning processes, and the desire for a more consistent and transparent approach to planning approvals.

It aims to transform complex, inconsistent planning regulations into a consistent, ‘one-stop shop’ of governing policies so that planning and development in SA is easier to achieve and the creation of new places and spaces is more innovative, flexible and of a higher design quality. This will greatly help South Australians who are required to navigate the planning system when building a house or developing a business.

The Code is being progressively introduced across South Australia. The first phase is now live in the outback and will be followed by Phase Two (rural areas) in April 2020 and Phase Three (urban areas) in July 2020. To learn more visit the SA Planning Portal

What does the new Code hope to achieve?

The Code is designed to:

  • Consolidate all of SA’s development plans into one electronic code
  • Improve development assessment in SA through more consistent rules
  • Increase certainty while offering flexibility for innovative projects
  • Make planning policy more accessible and legible to everyone
  • Modernise SA’s planning system and enable technology by:
    • Making the Code available centrally via an online platform to all residents, planners, developers, and local governments which will greatly help South Australians to build a home, develop a business or progress large commercial developments that add value to the community
    • Respond to the expert panel recommendations including the need to reduce the number of plans, reduce the time required for planning matters, improve consistency of processes, and to streamline planning
  • Support the new legislative framework and standardise planning frameworks across the state.

All feedback received will be considered in the development of the Planning and Design Code.

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