Warragul & Drouin Precinct Structure Plans Review 2021

Baw Baw Shire Council has adopted a review into key high-level masterplans for managing growth and development in Warragul and Drouin at 25 August 2021 Council Meeting.

Precinct Structure Plans (PSPs) provide strategic direction for issues  housing, township character, open space, transport and more. Warragul and Drouin’s current PSPs were approved in 2014. Since then, the region’s exceptional growth has revealed issues with the PSPs’ effectiveness for managing development.  

The Warragul and Drouin PSP Review 2021 has identified and documented specific issues with the PSPs, and recommends changes aimed at improving their efficiency while providing outcomes that better preserve the towns’ rural character and align with community expectation. 

The PSP Review was prepared by Council and reviewed by external consultants Echelon Planning before going on exhibition for community consultation for six weeks from 11 June 2020 to 22 July 2020.  

As a result of this consultation, Council received 42 submissions from a mix of residents, landowners, consultants, and Government Agencies.   

With the PSP Review and its recommendations now adopted, Council will develop planning scheme amendment documentation and begin the next steps towards implementation  – first through Council and ultimately through submission to the Victorian Minister for Planning.  

As the implementation process progresses, there will be several further opportunities for community members and stakeholders to provide further input on key issues.  

Key Documents

Further Background Information

What is a PSP?

PSPs are higher-level masterplans for identified growth areas providing guidance for accommodating and managing growth. PSPs also inform long-term infrastructure investments and service provision required for the growing communities and neighbourhoods.

The strategic framework outlined in PSPs inform the planning provisions in local planning schemes and guides land use and development that will occur over a long period of time within the PSP areas.

PSPs also provide strategic direction for a range of aspects – including housing, township character, neighbourhood centres, biodiversity, natural systems, bushfire management, open space, community facilities, transport and movement and utility provision.

Why are we reviewing the PSPs?

The purpose of the PSP review is to identify and document the issues and shortcomings of the current PSPs. The review provides recommendations for changes required to enhance the performance and efficiency of the PSPs to achieve the intended outcomes suitable for peri-urban areas like Warragul and Drouin. The review also identifies errors and anomalies within the PSPs that require correction.

The current Warragul and Drouin PSPs were prepared by the former Metropolitan Planning Authority (MPA) in consultation with Council, State agencies and other stakeholders. The PSPs and Amendment C108 to the Baw Baw Planning Scheme that introduced the Urban Growth Zone (UGZ) to the PSP areas were approved in October 2014.

Since 2014, development within the PSP areas have been occurring at a rapid rate. There are concerns from the development industry, some State agencies and planners of the difficulties using the current PSPs. Local communities are also concerned with the suburban-type developments that are occurring which compromise the unique rural character and natural environment of Baw Baw.

Given the rapid rate of growth already occurring and compromised outcomes in some areas, the need to review the PSPs has become necessary.

Council has committed to review and enhance the performance and efficiency of the PSPs to ensure orderly development outcomes that better align with current requirements and community sentiments.