Town Planning
Involves the application of specific government legislation and flow through policy, which provide for steady and guided urban growth. There are two main areas of Town Planning:
  • Statutory Town Planning Where Planning Permit or Development Applications are considered against state and local planning policies and regulations.
  • Strategic Town Planning Where the strategic direction of a municipality is set down with consideration to elements including government legislation future, growth of municipalities identifying appropriate planning controls maintaining environmental heritage and cultural values and identifies issues facing municipalities.
Zones denote the applicable development and land use ability of land (eg. residential, industrial, mixed zone). There are several zones throughout a given municipality which need to be considered for their planning merit during the Planning Application Process. The criteria within a zone will denote the ability of a development or land use change to be approved by the local government authority and any subsequent Planning Conditions.

Overlays exist over parcels of land with regional significance. Overlays affect how land can be developed. Some of the most common overlays are environmental and heritage factors. Overlays must be taken into consideration through the Planning Permit approvals process and may impact the ability of a Planning Permit Application to be approved. In some instances an Overlay will impose additional conditions on the Planning Permit.

Planning Permit Conditions
Planning conditions are conditions imposed on an approved Planning Permit to assist the implementation of the permit to meet the regulatory requirements of the land use and or development.

Planning Permit
Is the authority given by the Local Government Authority (Council or Shire) to proceed with the applied land use change or development with consideration to state and local legislation and applicable overlays. There are several steps involved in the Planning Permit approval process. A thoroughly researched and prepared Planning Permit Application improves the efficiencies of the approval process. Engaging a professional to provide advice as to the merit of your project prior to the application of a planning permit can help to reduce unnecessary expenses and expedite the overall process. 

If a Planning Permit Application is not successful, then a notice of decision is  provided with information as to the reasons which the Planning Permit Application could not be applied to the project/parcel of land.

Restrictive Covenant
A restrictive covenant is a private written agreement between landowners to restrict the use or development of land for the benefit of other land. The land where the restrictions apply is called the ‘burdened’ land. The land that benefits from the restrictions on the burdened land is called the ‘benefited’ land.

An objector is the party opposing a planning application. Objections can be made right up to the time before Council make a decision on an application though usually they are lodged during the advertising period. It is encouraged that permit applicants discuss the proposal and address the objections withthe objectors - this can be mediated by Council or a third party. Withdrawal of objections needs to be done in writing.

Mediation is the consultation or negotiation to resolve and issue. sometimes directed by Council or VCAT.

Application for Review
Application to VCAT to review a planning decision made by a Council.

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