Industry Update March 2021

IMPORTANT UPDATE TO OUR VALUED CLIENTS AND STAKEHOLDERS

Planning Monthly Update 

Riverstone East Stage 3
We understand that DPIE are now progressing the final stage of the Precinct with Blacktown Council. The key remaining issues are infrastructure servicing arrangements, the form of the Rouse Hill Regional Park and existing odour impacts. At this stage there is an expectation for formal exhibition of a draft Indicative Layout Plan around the end of 2021. The previous 2015 draft ILP can be found here and indicated a significantly expanded Rouse Hill Regional Park.

Draft Design and Place State Environmental Planning Policy
An Explanation of Intended Effect (EIE) is on exhibition until 31 March 2021 and proposes to repeal SEPP65 Design Quality of Residential Apartment Development and broaden the focus on design to all development (rather than just apartments). The BASIX SEPP will be repealed, the Apartment Design Guide revised, and new Urban Design and Design Review Guides will be created. Provision for a future Housing Design Guide is also proposed. Significantly, the new SEPP will require developments three or more storeys, open space over 1,000m2, and precincts and significant development, to be designed by suitably qualified designers.

Contributions Plans
The NSW Government has released a Roadmap for Reform and agreed to adopt all 29 recommendations of the NSW Productivity Commissioner’s Final Report into the Contributions System. Do not miss our analysis here with big changes proposed and the new contributions regime timetabled to commence in July 2022.

The Vineyard Contributions Plan has now been adopted by Hawkesbury City Council. See our previous update here in case you missed it.

Aerotropolis Precinct Plans
After two extensions of time the exhibition period has now formally closed. A significant body of work remains to be done on the strategic planning for the Aerotropolis – expect revised Precinct Plans, and amended SEPP, Stage 2 DCP’s and the release of the Final Masterplanning Guidelines.

To discuss further please contact Nathan Croft, Manager Planning & Development Strategy on 0419 845 089 or at nathan.croft@orionconsulting.com.au.

Construction Monthly Update 

Construction Work Days 
Back on the 2nd of April last year, the Minister for Planning and Public Spaces, Rob Stokes, informed the public in a ministerial media release that construction sites could now operate on weekends and public holidays under the new rules that were introduced by the NSW Government under The Environmental Planning and Assessment (COVID-19 Development – Construction Work Days) Order 2020, to support the industry during the COVID-19 pandemic. The order covers the ‘carrying out of any building work or work, or the demolition of a building or work’, and allows workers to abide by social distancing rules without a loss of productivity or jobs.

With the 4 square meters rule having dropped to 2 square meters since the beginning of February, and NSW having now a 2-week streak since the last locally acquired case, previous to this a 55-day streak, we’ve noticed a number of civil construction companies recently, although working in open areas, making use of these extended work days to meet tight deadlines, avoid having to pay for liquidated damages and capitalising on accelerated costs clients are willing to pay to bring a program forward. What this has meant for contractors is that they are able to avoid the burden of having to place multiple trades in the same area and in close proximity to one another, which is often the case when programs have been accelerated and resources have been doubled, and instead promote a safer work area for all those involved by being able to spread the work and trades across multiple additional days.

Since the initial release on 2nd of April 2020 about the Environmental Planning and Assessment (COVID-19 Development – Construction Work Days) Order 2020, there hasn’t been any update as to when the order will cease.

To discuss any of the above further please contact our Construction Manager, Edmund Tsang on 0418 758 184 or at edmund.tsang@orionconsulting.com.au.

Project Management Monthly Update 

Contributions Plan Reform
In addition to the planning summary above and the analysis complete in December, there are a number of key project management takeaways.

  1. Contribution payments timing – Contribution payments will now be deferred to Occupation Certificate. Pushing back payments to Occupation Certificate will likely improve developer cash flow. The second being the cost.
  2. Cost – The reform includes capping the local contributions and regional special infrastructure contributions that may impact your current or future project. See the analysis link  here for further details.

Koala Habitat Protection SEPP 2021
The recently introduced Koala SEPP 2019 has now been remade into the Koala SEPP 2021 and commenced on the 17th March 2021. The new policy reinstates the 2019 framework to 83 LGA’s across New South Wales, however 9 of these LGA’s including Liverpool and Wollondilly will apply the Koala SEPP 2021 to all zones. For further details, visit Planning NSW latest release here.

Corridor Protection SEPP
With development booming across Western Sydney and the consideration for future serviceability of the Western Parkland City, a new SEPP for Corridor Protection has been introduced. This SEPP identifies strips of land to be used for future infrastructure purposes. This SEPP currently has corridors in Blacktown, Liverpool, Penrith and Camden LGA’s. It’s important that these corridors are reviewed and assessed for impacts as they may have significant yield or commercial impacts on development projects. The SEPP can be found here.

Aerotropolis Core – Name Update
The Parkland city centre currently known as Aerotropolis Core now has a new name – Bradfield. The city is proposed to span across approximately 100ha of Badgerys Creek and expected to be an economic driver, joining the likes of Paramatta and Sydney. The core was named after John Bradfield who oversaw the construction of the world-renowned Sydney Harbour Bridge. This name will now be put forward to the Geographical Names Board of NSW for approval.

To discuss any of the above in greater detail please contact our Senior Project Manager – Joshua Pineda on 0477 444 702 or at Joshua.pineda@orionconsulting.com.au.

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