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December 2018

Message from the General Manager

Sally Smith Sally Smith

As we draw closer to a well-earned break, we reflect on some of the significant achievements of this year in laying the foundations of our new system. We have:

Our achievements could not have been made without the contributions of our colleagues in councils, industry and the community. Your considered feedback, great ideas and valuable advice, are fundamental to us delivering our new planning system. 

It’s also important to recognise the large number of our sector working hard under our current system, facilitating new development as well as keeping up to date on the reform program and our ongoing engagement with communities.

2019 will be the year of the Planning and Design Code and our new ePlanning system. 

Our first Code will be up and running by the middle of the year, and our new ePlanning system will bring it all online and make planning more accessible for all South Australians.

Early next year will see us release a suite of supporting regulations, as well as the first draft Planning and Design Code for ‘Land Not Within a Council Area’; which will be the first time practitioners and the community can see how it will work together. 

The journey we are on together has a way to go and by working collaboratively I have no doubts we will deliver a better planning system for all South Australians.

I wish you all a happy and safe holiday season and trust you enjoy a break with your families and friends. I will be heading off for a decent break and am looking forward to returning with renewed vigour and enthusiasm for the year ahead.

Best wishes

Sally Smith
General Manager, Planning and Development

From the Commission Chair...

Michael Lennon Michael Lennon - Chair, State Planning Commission

This month, I’d like to formally welcome the State Commission Assessment Panel’s newest members, Sally Roberts and Mark Adcock, who attended their first meeting last week. These meetings are now open to the public thanks to new transparency measures introduced through the SCAP Review.

SCAP’s Presiding Member Simone Fogarty and I sincerely wish to thank retiring members David O’Loughlin and Sue Crafter for their invaluable contribution to the panel as well as Helen Dyer, who has now joined Allan Holmes and Craig Holden as members of the State Planning Commission.

I would also like to congratulate Gavin Leydon on his appointment to the position of Chair of the Building Committee as well as Peter Harmer who joins as a new Committee member. I extend my genuine thanks to outgoing Chair Alan Taylor for his many years of expert advice and service, both as Presiding Member of the Building Rules Assessment Commission and as Chair of the Building Committee.

2018 has been an extremely busy year for the Commission and its Committees. We have made significant progress in progressing the new system.

We have established the Community Engagement Charter to ensure South Australians are involved in the setting of policy for the new planning system, conducting more than 110 workshops, receiving 1216 submissions, and directly reaching over 3000 people.

SCAP has assessed over 1230 land use applications worth more than $5.36 billion (FY2017/18), supporting state infrastructure investment and enhancing our city’s livability through residential apartments and mixed-use corridors across Greater Adelaide.

The Building Committee has found its feet this year oversighting the development of new building instruments under the Act to support building reform, and providing advice on a range of regulatory matters to benefit the industry and community.

I fully recognise that next year will be even busier, especially for our local government colleagues with the implementation of the new Planning and Design Code, as well as our state’s first Accredited Professionals Scheme. I acknowledge that these important elements of the new planning system may not be perfect in their initial introduction, but we are committed to improving them through future generations over the course of the reform.

I look forward to an exciting year ahead and to working with councils and the community through our series of policy conservations and discussion papers to inform the foundations of the Code next year. We want to work closely with you to form genuine partnerships that respect the roles of state and local government through collaborative and sophisticated dialogue.

The Commission wishes you and your families a safe and merry Christmas season.

Michael Lennon
Chair, State Planning Commission

Have your say about the economy in SA’s new planning system

A discussion paper about how South Australia’s new planning system will support the economy has been released for consultation until Friday 22 February 2019.

The Productive Economy Policy Discussion Paper describes how our new planning system will provide an environment that supports existing business, encourages growth of new industries, links people to jobs and services, and assists innovative enterprise to encourage investment into our state.

All South Australians are invited to read the paper and Have Your Say.

The 2018-19 Open Space and Places for People grant round is now open

The Planning and Development Fund provides grants to local government for funding of projects which seek to support the development and improvement of quality public open space and to revitalise public spaces.

Applications are now open for projects that will assist with the planning and development of significant open space and public realm initiatives, or for the purchase of strategic open space. Councils may apply for grants until 3.00 pm Friday, 8 February 2019.

For more information email

New inspection policies to raise the standard of new builds

To ensure higher standards of building practice, a state-wide set of council inspection policies will soon be developed as part of the new planning system. These will ensure greater consistency and compliance across the state.

Councils will have the opportunity to contribute to the engagement on inspection policies via an online survey during December 2018. More information is available on the Building Reform page of the SA Planning Portal.

Planning Institute of Australia (PIA) Awards for Planning Excellence 2018

As another big year comes to a close, it was fitting that some of the team attended the annual Planning Institute of Australia (SA) Awards for Planning Excellence.

These awards are a fantastic way to recognise best practice, leadership and high achievement across the profession, and it was rewarding to celebrate such high calibre work with this year’s award nominees and winners. You can view the Awards Commemorative Booklet to find out more.

Feedback received on our new planning system

The department strives to engage South Australians in the planning reform conversation and publish ‘What We Heard’ Reports that captures submissions and comments received. When these planning documents are finalised, we will also release a summary of how this feedback informed them.

Read our most recently released What We Have Heard Reports:

•  What We Have Heard on the Planning and Design Code - How Will It Work?
•  What We Have Heard on Assessment Pathways - How Will They Work?
What We Have Heard on the Accredited Professionals Scheme Draft

Annual Report on development activity now online

The latest Annual Report on the Administration of the Development Act 1993 has now been tabled in Parliament. Key development activities during 2017-18 include:

  • 24 273 development applications approved (compared with 24 411 last financial year)
  • 3061 land divisions approved (compared with 3092 last financial year)
  • $25m allocated to public realm projects by the Planning and Development Fund (including $4.3m for the Coast Park - Minda Dunes Project run by the City of Holdfast Bay).


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Page last modified Tuesday, 13 August 2019