The Minister for Planning & Infrastructure accepted the National Trust’s argument that the Government’s First Print of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Amendment Bill 2012 would have had adverse collateral implications for heritage in NSW.
The National Trust successfully negotiated amendments to the Bill just prior to its debate in the Upper House. The amendments remove the ability of an applicant to unilaterally propose alternative solutions to development control requirements. Instead flexibility will be permissible provided that they present a “reasonable alternative that achieves the objects of those standards for dealing with that aspect of the development.”
Accordingly, the applicant must comply with the spirit of the DCP and achieve the standard prescribed by the Council. It is anticipated that these amendments will provide sufficient regulatory control of development proposals in heritage conservation areas, pending the introduction of the planning reforms for NSW.
The White Paper is expected to go on exhibition in November, with the legislation introduced to Parliament in 2013. The new planning system for NSW is expected to take effect in July 2013