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BETTER PLANNING FOR QUEENSLAND

The Queensland Government is committed to delivering a better planning system that enables responsible development and delivers prosperity, sustainability and liveability for now and into the future.

Planning reform is an important part of the Government's plan for Queensland.

Planning reform can contribute to:

  • improving the quality of places and spaces
  • delivering a stronger economy and jobs
  • making housing more affordable
  • making sure new and existing communities are supported with infrastructure
  • protecting important natural resources
  • managing the impacts of natural hazards
  • tackling long term challenges like climate change and the ageing population.

To enable better planning the current planning legislation will be replaced with a new and easy to understand Planning Act.

The Better Planning for Queensland directions paper outlines the government's plan for planning reform and how it will establish a fairer and more open system that enables better planning in Queensland. Queenslanders are encouraged to read the paper and get involved, by providing comment.

"We believe that planning reform can deliver a more efficient system that supports investment and jobs, but don't believe this must come at the expense of community participation or the role of local government"

Deputy Premier, Jackie Trad (May 2015)

KEY PLANNING DIRECTIONS AND COMMUNITY COLLABORATION

Queensland's planning system should support effective and genuine public participation in planning, whilst providing for efficient and consistent decision making that instils investment and community confidence.

Key principles at the heart of better planning are:

  • enabling responsible development
  • stimulating economic growth and innovation
  • ensure genuine public participation in the planning process
  • Deliver clear and concise legislation that supports effective and efficient planning and development assessment.

To create a better planning and development assessment framework, has released a Key Directions Paper and welcomes the opportunity to collaborate with the community on what this means for them!

Community collaboration

The Government welcomes the opportunity to engage and collaborate with Queenslander’s on Better Planning for Queensland. Over the coming weeks and months, there are many ways to get involved and talk directly with the Department on what ‘Better Planning for Queensland’ means to you.

Tell us what you think about planning directions

The Department is committed to keeping industry, local governments and broader community informed on reform initiatives and will post regular updates on this page.

Planning Reform hits the road

The planning reform team will hit the streets of Queensland in August and September to talk about planning in a series of ‘Meet a Planner’ sessions.

The informal sessions will outline the current planning system and also the draft planning legislation that will be open for public comment.

If you are a community group and would like to request a one-on-one meeting with the team while we are in your area, please contact us via the details provided on our events tab.

As the team can only travel to so many places, all information shared at these sessions will be made available on this website from early August.

29 June - Free Community Presentations on Planning Reform

Throughout July, the Department will speak to community members in Brisbane, Sunshine and Gold Coast about planning reform and what it will mean for them. These free events have been coordinated by the Queensland Environmental Defenders Office (EDO) and several local partner organisations. Details of these free events are shown below:

  • Brisbane, 9 July at the University of Queensland, Steele Room (6pm – 8pm) - RSVP here
  • Sunshine Coast, 15 July at Lake Kawana Community Centre (6pm – 8pm) - RSVP here
  • Gold Coast, 15 July at Robina Community Centre (6:30pm – 8:30pm) - RSVP here

If you're a community group that would like to learn more about planning reform, please contact the Department at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

15 June - Department outlines key elements of Planning Reform

With the recent release of the Directions Paper – Better Planning for Queensland, the Department hosted a live stream event to outline the directions in more detail and provide an update on where the team is at and next steps. You can access the video here.

4 June - Live streamed event on Key Planning Directions

With the recent release of the directions paper, Better Planning for Queensland: Next Steps in Planning Reform, the Department will host a live streamed event to outline its key directions, the next steps for planning reform, followed by a question and answer session.

Tune in to hear from the Department and ask any questions! If you’re unable to watch live, a recording will be available on the Department’s website following the event.

Details: Monday 15 June, 9am – 10.30am.
Stream details: Hear from the Department, you will require Microsoft Silverlight (a free application) – Access the live stream.
Questions in advance: If you can’t make the event and would like to question answered, send it to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

25 May - Government outlines key directions for planning reform

Communities across Queensland, local councils and industry will be able to shape the future of their streets, suburbs and regions under the Palaszczuk Government's new planning reforms.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning Jackie Trad today released the directions paper Better Planning for Queensland, which will support community and industry consultation and guide the development of a new Planning Act.

You can provide feedback on the directions paper via this online survey.

24 March - Continuing the planning reform process

When the election was called in January 2015, the Parliament and all its Committees were dissolved. The draft Planning Bills had entered Parliament on 25 November 2014 and were being reviewed by the then, Committee.

The new government is committed to continuing the planning reform process to ensure Queensland's planning system is contemporary, efficient and effective. The timing of the reform effort is being reviewed and when confirmed, the Department will share this information with the broader planning community.

8 January - Committee Inquiry on Planning Bills ceases due to election

With the Queensland Government now in caretaker mode, all existing Parliamentary Committees cease to exist (with the exception of the Parliamentary Crime and Corruption Committee), along with their inquiries and referrals. If you or your organisation were preparing a submission to the State Development, Infrastructure and Industry Committee on the Planning Bills, this is no longer required. In the interests of continued effective engagement, the Department will still accept feedback on the draft Planning and Development Regulation and supporting documents (due 13 February 2015).

As we go through the reform journey, we'll regularly update our Frequently Asked Questions. If you can't see your question below, please get in contact. For information on the draft planning bills, download our questions so far document (PDF icon 380 KB).

Over the coming weeks and months, there are many ways to get involved and talk directly with the Department of Infrastructure, Local Government & Planning on what ‘Better Planning for Queensland’ means to you:

  • Hear from the Department
  • Send us your feedback on the key directions:
    • via our online survey
    • email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
    • mail to PO Box 15009 City East QLD Brisbane 4002.
  • Your community meeting – If you would like the Department to present on planning reform to your community group, please contact us
  • Come talk to us – In August/September the Department will head around the state to talk to communities about planning. When these details are confirmed, they will be posted on our events page.
  • Draft Consultation Bill - When the draft Planning Bill is prepared later this year, the Department will release a draft for consultation and feedback. All Queenslanders can make a submission to the draft bill.
  • Parliamentary Committee Review - After the Department has considered all the submissions and refined the draft bill, it will then be introduced to Parliament. When this happens, the Parliamentary Infrastructure, Planning and Natural Resources Committee will review the draft legislation. Learn more about this process and sign up to the Parliamentary Committee e-lert system, to stay involved in this process.

The Department of Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning is responsible for delivering reform, within the Planning Group.

Queensland's current planning legislation - The Sustainable Planning Act 2009 (SPA) - is long, complex and unresponsive. The highly-regulated legislation has also created a process-driven industry, rather than one focussed on delivering positive outcomes.

Whilst the system was never claimed to be fundamentally 'broken', the accumulation of recommended changes from all stakeholder groups (government (state and local), industry, professional and other stakeholders), collectively, necessitated a new Act rather than simply 'tweaking' SPA.

The Department has made the commitment that it will support local government, industry and the community through any planning reform.

Detailed information, presentations and content will be available for all users of the planning system and are available from the reform website. The team has accepted several invitations to present to community, environmental and industry groups on planning reform and will continue to do so.

The government will endeavour to provide up to six months between the any new planning legislation passing and its enactment, which will provide local governments more time for transitional work with certainty as to the structure of the new system.

More details on the training and support model will be shared over the coming months.

No. The transitional arrangements with any new planning legislation will ensure planning schemes (IPA or SPA) are valid and operational on 'day one' of a new system. The government is extremely cognisant of the effort already made by local governments towards new schemes and the efforts and costs required in this process.

To prepare for 'day one' of the new planning system, the government is committed to supporting councils and communities by providing a suite of tools and information that will not only support in transition, but provide the opportunity to improve the overall effectiveness of the planning scheme.

If your council would like more information on scheme transition, contact us on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Since the 1960's, the State has continually looked to improve its planning and development framework, in response to its changing needs. The work of the previous government made headway towards an improved system, but we believe that work may have occurred at the expense of some important principles that should underpin reform.

Our proposed reforms build on the earlier work and seek to bring a better balance across industry, environmental and community interests to enable better planning for Queensland.

As we move towards a new planning system, the Department will post a range of resources to help you better understand reform and what it means for you. Please contact the Department on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. at any time, if you require more information.

The 2015 Planning Summit was held on Tuesday 28 July. The Summit brought together over 200 representatives from the broader planning community including Local Government elected members, planning practitioners, peak bodies, industry, development, community and environmental groups.

At the Summit, the Deputy Premier and Minister for Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning, Jackie Trad outlined her vision for the State and presented the latest research and trends that must be considered, when planning for our cities, towns and communities. Parts of the day were live streamed and all presentations were filmed and recorded. Key Summit presentations can be watched, with recordings from concurrent sessions available next week.

Greg Chemello - Deputy Director-General of the Planning Group

Summit welcome
Greg Chemello opens the Summit and talks about his plan for planning reform.
View the presentation

Jackie Trad - Deputy Premier and Minister for Infrastructure, Local Governmentand Planning

Queensland’s future places, towns and cities
The Deputy Premier and Minister for Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning, Jackie Trad released her key directions for planning reform on 25 May 2015. In her address, she will outline the Government’s vision for Queensland’s future places, towns and cities, and detail how the Government intends to address the key issues impacting Queensland.
View the presentation

Dr Stefan Hajkowicz - Principal Scientist in Strategic Foresight at CSIRO

Megatrends that will shape our places
Stefan will share his latest research on global megatrends and how they will translate to the Queensland landscape. A must-see address for all Queenslanders!
View the presentation

Michelle Blicavs - Chief Executive Officer, IAP2 Australasia

A new wave of engagement
Research shows that inclusive and authentic community engagement is critical to successful towns and cities. The Government is committed to public participation so the CEO of the International Association of Public Participation, Michelle Blicavs will join us to describe contemporary engagement principles and practices.
View the presentation

Malcolm Middleton - Queensland Government Architect

What’s the formula for outstanding urban design?
Attracting and retaining talent is vital to economic success, and great urban design is an important ingredient to creating environments for people to live, work and play. Malcolm Middleton, the Government’s Chief Architect, will describe the formula for achieving outstanding urban design and how it applies to places and spaces across the State.
View the presentation

Over the coming weeks and months, there are many ways to get involved and talk directly with the Department of Infrastructure, Local Government & Planning on what ‘Better Planning for Queensland’ means to you:

  • Hear from the Department
  • Send us your feedback on the key directions:
    • via our online survey
    • email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
    • mail to PO Box 15009 City East QLD Brisbane 4002.
  • Your community meeting – If you would like the Department to present on planning reform to your community group, please contact us
  • Come talk to us – In August/September the Department will head around the state to talk to communities about planning. When these details are confirmed, they will be posted on our events page.
  • Draft Consultation Bill - When the draft Planning Bill is prepared later this year, the Department will release a draft for consultation and feedback. All Queenslanders can make a submission to the draft bill.
  • Parliamentary Committee Review - After the Department has considered all the submissions and refined the draft bill, it will then be introduced to Parliament. When this happens, the Parliamentary Infrastructure, Planning and Natural Resources Committee will review the draft legislation. Learn more about this process and sign up to the Parliamentary Committee e-lert system, to stay involved in this process.

Better Planning for Queensland, Live Stream (15 June 2015)
Key leaders from the Department came together to outline the next steps for planning reform and how to get involved.

On 26 November 2014, the Department released a suite of supporting documents to accompany the then, draft Planning and Development Bill and the Planning and Environment Courts Bill.

The documents in this library outline the four main elements of reform (Legislation, Plan Making, Development Assessment and IT Systems) and how, under the then proposed new legislation how these elements will be reflected.

While these bills have lapsed, we have kept the information and presentations pertaining to those bills online, to assist practitioners understand the previous direction.

Draft Planning Bills

Key changes (PDF icon 119 KB)
key changes to the planning bills between the consultation drafts and the final bills presented to Parliament in 2014.

Draft Bills Overview (PDF icon 1.3 MB) (includes draft regulation and access rules)

Legislation overview – James Coutts (5 December 2014).
Executive Director of Planning Services provides an overview of the draft planning bills and where they are at.

Planning Bills Consultation report (PDF icon 998 KB)

View the draft Bills

Planning and Development Bill

Draft Planning and Development Regulation (PDF icon 667 KB)

Planning and Development (Consequential) and Other Legislation Amendment Bill

Planning and Environment Court Bill

Plan Making

Proposed Plan Making System (PDF icon 3.1 MB)

Plan Making System – James Coutts (5 December 2014).
James talks about how the state is proposing to change its approach to plan making.

Infrastructure Designation – Tom Leach (5 December 2014).
Project Lead, Tom Leach runs through the key changes within Infrastructure Designation.

Scheme transition – James Coutts (5 December 2014).
James gives an overview of where the Department is at in regards to scheme transition.

Development Assessment

Proposed Development Assessment System (PDF icon 4.1 MB)

Proposed DAQ Process – Kim Kirstein (5 December 2014).
Project Lead, Kim Kirstein provides a high level view of the proposed changes in the development assessment space.

Detailed Development Assessment Process – Kim Kirstein (18 November 2014).
Kim Kirstein, gives a detailed overview of the proposed DA process.

MyDAS

Supporting Systems (MyDAS) (PDF icon 581 KB)

MyDAS overview – James Coutts (5 December 2014).

Members of the Department are regularly out and about speaking about planning reform. If your organisation would like a presentation about Planning Reform by the Department, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. The Department will make every effort to accommodate these requests.

The planning reform team will hit the streets of Queensland to talk about planning and what it means to them in a series of ‘Meet a Planner’ sessions. The sessions will run from 6.00pm to 7.30pm and no bookings are required.

If you are a community group and would like to request a one-on-one meeting while the team is in your local area, please contact us (see phone numbers below) or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

We’re still confirming the venues, so keep an eye on this page for updated details.

Location Date Venue Phone
RomaWednesday 5 August
6.00pm to 7.30pm
White Bull Tavern 43 Station Street, Roma(07) 4616 7307
MackayThursday 13 August
6.00pm to 7.30pm
Souths Leagues Club 181 Milton Street, Mackay(07) 4898 6888
Sunshine Coast, MaroochydoreMonday 24 August
6.00pm to 7.30pm
TBC(07) 5352 9701
IpswichTuesday 25 August
6.00pm to 7.30pm
Studio 188, 188 Brisbane Street, Ipswich(07) 3432 2413
RockhamptonWednesday 26 August
6.00pm to 7.30pm
Fitzroy Room, Rockhampton Regional Library, Bolsover St, Rockhampton(07) 4924 2913
Gold CoastMonday 31 August
6.00pm to 7.30pm
Robina Community Centre Library Building, 196 Robina Town Centre Drive, Robina(07) 5644 3200
Brisbane CBDWednesday 2 September
6.00pm to 7.30pm
TBC(07) 3452 6801
TownsvilleTuesday 8 September
6.00pm to 7.30pm
TBC(07) 4758 3404
CairnsMonday 14 September
6.00pm to 7.30pm
Rydges Tradewinds Hotel 137 The Esplanade, Cairns(07) 4037 3214
Mt IsaThursday 17 September
6.00pm to 7.30pm
TBC(07) 4747 3900
ToowoombaTBCTBC(07) 4616 7307
BundabergTBCTBC(07) 4331 5614
MaryboroughTBCTBC(07) 4331 5614

The 2015 Planning Summit was held on Tuesday 28 July. The Summit brought together over 200 representatives from the broader planning community including Local Government elected members, planning practitioners, peak bodies, industry, development, community and environmental groups.

At the Summit, the Deputy Premier and Minister for Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning, Jackie Trad outlined her vision for the State and presented the latest research and trends that must be considered, when planning for our cities, towns and communities. Parts of the day were live streamed and all presentations were filmed and recorded. Key Summit presentations can be watched, with recordings from concurrent sessions available next week.

Greg Chemello - Deputy Director-General of the Planning Group

Summit welcome
Greg Chemello opens the Summit and talks about his plan for planning reform.
View the presentation

Jackie Trad - Deputy Premier and Minister for Infrastructure, Local Governmentand Planning

Queensland’s future places, towns and cities
The Deputy Premier and Minister for Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning, Jackie Trad released her key directions for planning reform on 25 May 2015. In her address, she will outline the Government’s vision for Queensland’s future places, towns and cities, and detail how the Government intends to address the key issues impacting Queensland.
View the presentation

Dr Stefan Hajkowicz - Principal Scientist in Strategic Foresight at CSIRO

Megatrends that will shape our places
Stefan will share his latest research on global megatrends and how they will translate to the Queensland landscape. A must-see address for all Queenslanders!
View the presentation

Michelle Blicavs - Chief Executive Officer, IAP2 Australasia

A new wave of engagement
Research shows that inclusive and authentic community engagement is critical to successful towns and cities. The Government is committed to public participation so the CEO of the International Association of Public Participation, Michelle Blicavs will join us to describe contemporary engagement principles and practices.
View the presentation

Malcolm Middleton - Queensland Government Architect

What’s the formula for outstanding urban design?
Attracting and retaining talent is vital to economic success, and great urban design is an important ingredient to creating environments for people to live, work and play. Malcolm Middleton, the Government’s Chief Architect, will describe the formula for achieving outstanding urban design and how it applies to places and spaces across the State.
View the presentation

Throughout July, the Department will speak to community members in Brisbane, Sunshine and Gold Coast about planning reform and what it will mean for them. These free events have been coordinated by the Queensland Environmental Defenders Office (EDO) and several local partner organisations. Details of these free events are shown below:

  • Brisbane, 9 July at the University of Queensland, Steele Room (6pm – 8pm) - RSVP here
  • Gold Coast, 15 July at Robina Community Centre (6:30pm – 8:30pm) - RSVP here
  • Sunshine Coast, 16 July at Lake Kawana Community Centre (6pm – 8pm) - RSVP here

If you’re a community group that would like to learn more about planning reform, please contact the Department at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

With the recent release of the directions paper, Better Planning for Queensland: Next Steps in Planning Reform, the Department hosted a live streamed event to outline its key directions, the next steps for planning reform, followed by a question and answer session.

Watch the session here

GOT A QUESTION?

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

0428 715 609

HEAR FROM US

Members of the Department are regularly out and about speaking about planning reform.

If your organisation would like a presentation about the draft bills by the Department, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. The Department will make every effort to accommodate these requests.