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Property News Alert: Inland New South Wales Development Changes

News Alert 22 March 2016

The New South Wales (NSW) Government is proposing to amend the State Environmental Planning Policy (Exempt and Complying Development Codes) 2008 (Policy) to include new exempt and complying development controls for rural and regional NSW. The proposed amendments will see the introduction of a new ‘Inland Code’ which is intended to apply to all local government areas (83 regional council areas) located west of the Great Dividing Range. 

Complying Development

Generally, development within the planning controls for a complying development can proceed without a development approval. All that is required is a sign off by an accredited certifier or local council in the form of a Complying Development Certificate.

The proposed Inland Code will see new planning controls for standard developments in rural and regional NSW including: dwelling houses, out buildings, swimming pools and farm sheds.

The proposed Inland Code will replace the existing General and Rural Housing Code provisions in local government areas located west of the Great Dividing Range. It is intended to provide for these areas more suitable and tailored development standards and a single document that will be easier to navigate and understand.

A few of the key amendments are outlined below:

  • The site coverage, articulation zone and principal open space development standards will no longer apply to development under the Inland Code.
  • Gross floor area, landscaped area and setbacks will be the principal controls for determining the area which can be built upon.
  • Setback clauses will be simplified in order to better reflect the prevailing single storey built form.
  • Built to boundary setbacks will no longer apply to dwelling houses.
  • The size and scale of farm buildings are to be determined by the size of a total land holding, as opposed to a single lot.

Exempt Development

Generally, exempt development is development that can be carried out without approval or certification. This includes low impact developments such as minor home renovations like the erection of a carport, balcony, deck or garden shed.

As part of the development of the Inland Code new development standards for exempt development for areas in inland NSW are proposed for the following:

  • Farm sheds and out buildings;
  • Stock holding yards; and
  • Grain storage bunkers and silos.

These amendments will ensure that low impact development to support agricultural activities on rural zoned land can be undertaken without planning or building approval if appropriate pre-determined development standards can be met.


The proposal for an Inland Code is currently open for public submissions at the Department of Planning until 29 April 2016.

If you have any queries regarding the impact of the proposed Inland Code or development in Inland NSW please do not hesitate to contact Christopher Conolly or Henry Yuan.

Christopher Conolly, Partner

Henry Yuan, Paralegal

News Alert 22 March 2016
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