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A New Planning System for NSW - Submission by Prof Peter Webber, Planning Architecture Urban Design



The review is timely in view of the presently over-complex nature of the system. Innumerable amendments to the excellent Environmental Planning and Assessment Act of 1979 have successively confused and unnecessarily complicated the planning process. Many of the proposals in the White Paper for changes to the forward planning part of the system have the potential to significantly improve outcomes and better address critical environmental and social issues. Encouragement and support for greater involvement of the broader community in this part of the process is admirable.


On the other hand the proposals relating to the ‘assessment’ component, - the development control system, -would in effect exclude the community from the process in a large majority of cases and are extraordinarily retrograde and unacceptable. Likewise the proposals to exclude our elected representatives from the decision-making process in favour of a largely bureaucratic regime are deeply flawed.

My submission in response to the former ‘Green Paper’ emphasized the critical underlying principles on which any planning and development control system in a democracy must be based. These would be undermined by many of the present proposals relating to the development process in particular, and need to be further articulated.


Read more by downloading Emeritus Professor Peter Webber's submission... and don't miss the parable at the end.

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