The process of reviewing the urban Geelong settlement boundary in the Greater Geelong Planning Scheme will ultimately seek to implement a ‘long-term settlement boundary’ to contain residential development and protect green breaks surrounding urban areas. Land located outside the settlement boundary cannot be considered for urban growth, including housing and associated land uses.
The process is intended to provide certainty for the development industry and community whilst providing scope for long-term infrastructure planning and delivery.
Areas of focus
The nine areas of focus considered by the City of Greater Geelong are:
- Armstrong Creek South West
- Armstrong Creek South Central
- Waurn Ponds North
- Waurn Ponds South
- Lara North
- Lara South
The settlement boundaries of the above Bellarine townships are being reviewed as part of the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning’s Distinctive Areas and Landscapes project.
The eastern edge of urban Geelong and the southern edge of the Armstrong Creek Growth Area are being investigated as part of this review. It’s understood that an ultimate protected settlement boundary will be defined for these areas as part of the Bellarine and Surf Coast DAL projects, informed by the strategic planning work undertaken by the City of Greater Geelong.
A draft Background Report has been prepared. This report undertook an assessment of the nine areas for their suitability for inclusion within a long-term settlement boundary.
Since the intent of the investigation is not to identify significant new areas for inclusion within the long-term settlement boundary, the report is limited in scope.
Points of Interest
Given the limited scale of the project, we are encouraged to note the consideration granted to land outside of the settlement boundary within the Waurn Ponds North precinct. This area contains strategic land use anchors, such as the Deakin University Campus and the Geelong Future Economy Precinct, which warrant consideration for inclusion within the long-term settlement boundary.
In other areas, the proposed long-term settlement boundary seems to have adopted an attitude of acceptance of the status quo. Whilst the process seeks to consider land for inclusion that is contiguous with existing residential areas, this method ultimately limits the ability of the City of Greater Geelong to consider logical refinements to the settlement boundary to include existing developed areas. One such area is land neighbouring Lara, which appears to have been ignored for potential inclusion within the long-term settlement boundary.
This review process has the opportunity to make broader refinements to the existing settlement boundary, ensuring the City of Greater Geelong implements an enduring long-term settlement boundary that reflects the extent of urban Geelong in all aspects of land use and development.
The City of Greater Geelong is seeking feedback on the draft Background Report by 13 May 2022. Submissions can be made here.
Upon review and consideration of submissions, the City of Greater Geelong will prepare a final report.
The final report is likely to be put before Council in mid-2022. Following this, the City of Greater Geelong will commence the preparation of a planning scheme amendment to introduce the boundary into the planning scheme, which is likely to take place in late 2022.
Please reach out to our Ratio Consultants’ Geelong team to discuss what this project may mean for your land at firstname.lastname@example.org.