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What is an LEP?

A  Local Environmental Plan (LEP) is the main legal document that controls how land is used and developed in a local government area.  LEPs guide Council planning decisions and development proposals by having:

  • Land use zones. Each zone has permitted or prohibited land uses.
  • Development standards. These control the bulk and scale of development, for example minimum lot size, height and floor space ratio.
  • Planning controls. These controls relate to particular local issues such as heritage, aircraft noise and scenic foreshore protection.

An LEP comprises a written instrument and a range of maps. It is made by Council, in consultation with the community, and approved by the NSW Minister for Planning, as set out in the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 and regulations.

What is Randwick City Council’s current LEP?

Council’s current LEP is known as the Randwick Local Environmental Plan 1998 (Consolidation) or RLEP.

Why is Randwick Council preparing a new LEP?

NSW Government’s planning reforms means all councils must prepare a new draft Comprehensive LEP (draft LEP). The reforms aim to simplify and streamline the NSW planning system.

These reforms include:

  • The Standard Instrument (LEP template) for all LEPs.  This outlines the form and content of LEPs including standardised zones, land uses, definitions, and optional and compulsory clauses.  All new LEPs must be in the Standard Instrument format.
  • The NSW Metropolitan Plan for the growth and development of the Sydney Metropolitan region. The Plan has key objectives and directions for housing, transport, environment, sustainability and infrastructure. 
  • The draft East Subregional Strategy. This brings the objectives and directions of Metropolitan Plan to a subregional and local level and sets a number of directions specific toRandwick City including provision for housing and employment. 

A new draft Comprehensive LEP gives Council the opportunity to make sure that Randwick City’s zoning and planning controls are up to date, address current and emerging planning issues, and support Randwick as a sustainable, well designed and liveable City. 

How does Council’s current LEP fit into the Standard Instrument?

Many ofRandwick’s current zones and planning controls have been transferred into the Standard Instrument format, without major changes.  However, there are some revisions to take into account the new format and planning language as well as local planning issues.

Are there any zoning changes in the new LEP?

Yes. The draft LEP proposes some zoning changes to land inRandwickCityfor:

  • Zoning mismatches

In some cases what exists or is approved in a location is different to the current zoning. For example, a block or street frontage may be zoned low density residential under the current LEP, but actually has residential flat buildings or retail/commercial buildings that are of a higher scale than provided for under the zoning and planning controls.

The zoning mismatches generally relate to residential, business or special use sites. The draft LEP amends the zoning and/or planning controls for such properties to reflect the existing  or approved type and scale of development.

  • Open Space Sites

A number of additional open space sites have been recognised, with zoning changes to reflect their use or environmental qualities.

  •  Roads

The Standard Instrument requires that all roads are zoned, usually consistent with the adjoining zone. This overcomes confusion if a road boundary is incorrect.

  • Randwick Specialised Centre Sites

To realise the vision and directions for the Specialised Centre, there are some changes to the zones and planning controls for three locations along High Street andBelmore Roadto encourage health/medical related uses near the hospitals.

  • Rezoning Requests

Council has received a number of site specific rezoning requests from residents, mainly for residential and business zoned land. The draft LEP amends the zoning of these sites only where they are consistent with State and local planning policies, close to public transport, centres and facilities, and consistent with the prevailing character of the street frontage, block and surrounding area.

Further information on zoning changes can be found in the datasheets on Council’s Your Say Randwick website, or from Council staff at the drop-in sessions, or from the public exhibition material at Council’s Administrative Centre or Council libraries.

What are the key planning changes with the new LEP?

Some of the main changes in the draft Comprehensive LEP are:

  • the new overall structure and planning language for zones, land uses, definitions and clauses in line with the Standard Instrument requirements for all LEPs in NSW
  • transferring zoning and permissible uses to the equivalent zones/uses under the Standard Instrument.
  • increasing the area of land zoned for public recreation, national park and environment conservation
  • a new rural zone for the Phillip Bay Chinese market gardens site
  • zoning changes to specific sites to reflect existing land use, development consents or rezoning requests, where suitable
  • recognising existing clusters of shops in a Neighbourhood Centre zone and larger centres in a Local Business zone
  • mapping minimum lot size, height and FSR controls in accordance with the Standard Instrument requirements
  • adjusting floor space ratio (FSR) controls for residential zones to reflect development trends, the local character and industry best practice
  • continuing to rely on detailed building envelope controls in the DCP for certain town centres
  • revised built form controls  (heights and FSR) for Maroubra Beach Town Centre
  • revised built form controls (heights and FSR) for 3 sites in theRandwick   Education and Health Specialised Centre
  • new additions, deletions and modifications to heritage item listings, based on expert heritage reviews and requests from land owners
  • identifying new landscape heritage items in the public domain, such as sandstone walls
  • minor boundary adjustments to 7 of the existing 16 conservation areas and a new proposed conservation area atCaerleon Crescent
  • introducing new clauses for coastal protection including a foreshore building line control in the draft LEP instead of the DCP
  • a new clause to protect biodiversity and new mapping of endangered plant species
  • a new clause on design excellence for larger residential and commercial developments
  • a new clause for the location of sex services premises to ensure a reasonable level of separation between these premises, specified land uses and places regularly frequented by children
  • new clauses to ensure suitable assessment of development proposals with respect to essential services, acid sulphate soils, flooding, stormwater management and airspace operations
  • Exempt and Complying Development clauses to enable minor developments that have minimal environmental impact to be undertaken without requiring a Development Application (provided there is no overlap with Exempt and Complying Development Codes state-wide policy).

How has Council developed the new LEP?

To maximise community input into the preparation of the draft LEP, Council published six Discussion Papers for community feedback on land use zones and planning controls across the City. These Discussion Papers were an initiative of Randwick Council and over and above Council’s legal requirements.

The Discussion Papers were on Industrial Lands, Special Uses, Randwick Education and Health Specialised Centre, Open Space and Environment, Business Centres and Residential Lands. The papers incorporated key directions from the Metropolitan Plan and draft East Subregional Strategy.

The Discussion Papers were exhibited over 2010 and 2011 and community feedback was reported to the Council in November 2011.

Council also undertook extensive community consultations for new planning controls for the Maroubra Beach Town Centre, including a public exhibition of the proposals.

These community consultations helped Council in the preparation of the draft LEP by giving valuable community information and feedback.

Where is the new LEP up to?

On 6 December 2011, Council endorsed the proposed public exhibition of the draft LEP and accompanying maps. The NSW Department of Planning and Infrastructure has now given the permission needed for this public exhibition.

 The public exhibition started on 21 February 2012 and finishes on 2 April 2012.

What happens after the public exhibition period?

After the public exhibition, Council will consider all feedback and any recommended changes to the draft LEP as a result of the community consultations.

Once Council endorses the draft LEP and any changes, it will then be sent to the NSW Department of Planning and Infrastructure for final approval by the Minister of Planning.   The LEP will come into effect on the date it is published in the Government Gazette.

Does exhibition of the new draft LEP affect a development application submitted to Council?

Yes. Development applications or Section 96 (modification) applications will now be assessed taking into consideration the controls of both the existing Randwick Local Environmental Plan 1998 (RLEP) and the new draft Comprehensive LEP. Any proposed development must be permissible under the current LEP.

What is the land reclassification proposal?

Council proposes to reclassify Council owned land at13-21 Rainbow Street, Kingsford from “community” to “operational” land as part of the draft LEP. The reclassification will recognise its current use, car parking and a weekend market and potential future commercial use including parking in association with the adjoining STA land.

Under State legislation, Council is required to hold a public hearing on the proposed reclassification. The public hearing details will be notified after the public exhibition of the draft LEP.

What if I think that there is mistake on one of the draft LEP maps?

The draft LEP includes a series of maps on land use zoning, development standards and as other planning controls. 

Council has made every effort to ensure accuracy of these maps but there may be drafting anomalies.

Council recommends that property owners look carefully at all draft LEP maps relating to their property and write, call to or email Council if you think there is a mistake.

What about DCPs?

Development Control Plans (DCPs) provide additional design detail and guidance on development to complement the provisions of the LEP.  A DCP may apply to particular types of development such as dwelling houses or commercial buildings, or relate to a specific planning or development issue such as footpath dining.

A DCP is made by Council in consultation with the community. While DCPs do not have the same level of statutory weight as an LEP, they are an important consideration in the development assessment and approval process.

The Council has a range of site specific and issues based DCPs. These are being reviewed and consolidated into a Comprehensive DCP which will be exhibited later in 2012.

What is the public hearing on the Draft LEP?

The public hearing is an additional way for you to have your say about any aspect of the Randwick Draft LEP, by way of making a verbal submission. 

Council initiated, through a resolution on 28 February 2012, to hold a public hearing at the end of the public exhibition, as an additional forum for the community's continued interest in planning for our City's future and to further enhance community involvement in Council’s decision on the draft LEP.

The public hearing will be facilitated by an independent expert planning consultant, with Council staff providing administrative support. The facilitator then will report on the hearing to Council.

This hearing provides residents and other stakeholders the opportunity to speak to their issues and ideas on the draft LEP in a public forum. This is in addition to written submissions, which are an important component of the consultation process and will be reviewed thoroughly and reported to Council.

The hearing will be held on Monday 2 April 2012 from 6pm in the Council Chambers, corner of Avoca Street and Frances Street – entry through the Randwick Town Hall, off Avoca Street. If required, the public hearing will continue in the same venue on 3 and 4 April.

You are encouraged to register should you want to speak or attend the hearing as an observer. This will assist in planning the hearing. For more information, or to register to attend or speak, contact Council’s Strategic Planning team on 9399 0992. 

Note that this public hearing is separate to another public hearing for the proposed reclassification of Council owned land at 13-21 Rainbow Street, Kingsford. This public hearing, which is a legislative requirement, will be held in late April 2012.

How do I find out more?

You can see copies of the draft LEP and support material at Council’s Administrative Centre, 30 Frances Street, Randwick 8.30am to 5pm, Monday to Fridays, and at all Council’s libraries during library opening hours.

During the exhibition period, Council will be holding a number of drop-in sessions where Council officers can answer questions on the draft LEP. See the key dates on this site for times and locations of the drop-in sessions.

For more information about the draft LEP and/or the drop-in sessions contact the Strategic Planning Team on 9399 0992

How do I have my say?

Submissions in writing clearly headed ‘Draft Comprehensive LEP ’ can be sent:

  • by email to LEPreview@randwick.nsw.gov.au
  • or by post to the General Manager, Randwick City Council, 30 Frances Street, Randwick NSW 2031
  • or complete a submissions form on this website.

 The deadline for submissions is 2 April 2012 .