Less developer control

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The NSW Productivity Commission is recommending that the planning control systems be relaxed to allow developers to ‘get on with the job’ which they say is currently made difficult by the amount of ‘red tape’ (such as community consultation) restricting growth and the speed of application approvals.

The Commission is arguing that the Government had implemented an “overly complex, prescriptive and slow” system, which has hamstrung the ability of developers to respond to housing demand.

The commission wants the government to order councils to reassess housing supply capabilities in local government areas, while also calling on councils to revise housing strategies in areas where a lack of capacity is identified.

“Housing supply has failed to keep up with demand — that has led to an undersupply of housing, increasing the cost of living for households and making NSW a less attractive place to live,” he said. “Development applications are taking longer to assess, restricting housing supply and reducing affordability.”

The NSW Productivity Commission also recommended NSW Planning cut red tape and “Bring NSW approval assessment times into line with other jurisdictions’ times by the end of 2023”.

No one has asked local communities what they think about these proposals. The most likely outcome will be less community consultation and the greater use of Exempt Development policies for bigger projects that have greater local impact.

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