The Greater Sydney Region Plan (the Plan), A Metropolis of Three Cities:
- sets a 40-year vision (to 2056) and establishes a 20-year plan to manage growth and change for Greater Sydney in the context of social, economic and environmental matters
- informs district and local plans and the assessment of planning proposals
- assists infrastructure agencies to plan and deliver for growth and change and to align their infrastructure plans to place-based outcomes
- informs the private sector and the wider community of the growth management and infrastructure investment intentions of government.
The Plan applies to the Greater Sydney Region, shown in Figure 2, and sets the planning framework for the five districts which make up the region. The local government areas that make up the five districts are listed in Figure 2.
A Metropolis of Three Cities integrates land use, transport and infrastructure planning between the three tiers of government and across State agencies.
The Plan has been prepared concurrently with Future Transport 2056 and State Infrastructure Strategy 2018–2038 to align land use, transport and infrastructure outcomes for Greater Sydney for the first time in a generation.
The transport initiatives in this Plan are sourced from Future Transport 2056. They are in four categories: committed, investigation 0–10 years, investigation 10–20 years and visionary 20+ years. The latter three categories require further investigation and ultimately decisions of government on commitments to funding.
The Plan outlines how the 10 Directions established in Directions for a Greater Sydney are the starting point for delivering integrated planning and how this alignment moves from setting directions to implementing directions. This relationship is shown in Figure 1.
Figure 1: State plans working together for Greater Sydney
Figure 2: Greater Sydney Region
Requirements of the Plan
The Plan has been prepared in accordance with section 3.3 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 which requires it to include or identify: the basis for strategic planning in the region, having regard to economic, social and environmental matters; a vision statement; Objectives consistent with that vision; Strategies and Actions for achieving those Objectives; and an outline of the basis on which the implementation of those Actions will be monitored and reported.
In line with legislative requirements, a review of the current regional plan for Greater Sydney, A Plan for Growing Sydney (2014) identified that while most of the directions in A Plan for Growing Sydney were still relevant, they required updating or strengthening to respond to new challenges for planning Greater Sydney to 2056. The review is available on the Greater Sydney Commission’s website at www.greater.sydney.
The Plan complements existing Australian and NSW Government requirements for managing growth and change across Greater Sydney such as State environmental planning policies and the Heritage Act 1977 (NSW).
The Greater Sydney Commission, through the Greater Sydney Commission Act 2015, is responsible for leading metropolitan planning for the Greater Sydney Region and, at the request of the Minister for Planning, engaged with the Greater Sydney community and prepared a draft Greater Sydney Region Plan.
In finalising the Plan, the Greater Sydney Commission used its independence to engage consistently and transparently with the community, businesses, councils, and State agencies throughout the process.
The Plan incorporates feedback from community and stakeholder engagement including submissions to the draft Greater Sydney Region Plan exhibited from 22 October 2017 to 15 December 2017 and five revised draft District Plans exhibited from 26 October 2017 to 15 December 2017. Submission reports on the draft regional plan and the draft district plans are available on the Greater Sydney Commission’s website at www.greater.sydney.
Giving effect to the Plan
‘Give effect to’ is the legislative term for delivering the regional and district plans through local plans. Opportunities to coordinate and realise greater efficiencies in the implementation of plans have been made possible by recent planning reforms that include a legislative framework for strategic planning. This framework provides a clear line of sight from the regional level to planning and delivery at the local level.
The common requirement for the plans to identify their basis having regard to economic, social and environmental matters and for monitoring and reporting creates the opportunity to improve the integration of data and analysis that informs transparent decision-making and evaluation across all three spatial levels of planning.
A key component of this framework is the local strategic planning statement, which leads the local response to the higher-level changes and trends, and must be consistent with any strategic plan for the area as set out in the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979. The local strategic planning statement is also required to be consistent with a council’s community strategic plan prepared under the Local Government Act 1993.
Local planning is supported by NSW Government funding for implementation and infrastructure. This includes funding that accelerates planning processes for a selection of councils and state infrastructure funding programs that align to growth (refer to Objective 39).
The relationship of the plans and their implementation is further discussed in Chapter 7.