Planning rules

This page provides information regarding the statutory and policy framework that governs the assessment of new developments in our City.

How the NSW planning system works

Development and Building rules in NSW have a cascading hierarchy, starting at the top with Legislation,  State Environmental Planning Policies, Local Environmental Plans, (statutory documents) and Development Control Plans, Local Policies and associated Engineering Guidelines (non statutory documents) at the base of the system.

Statutory Documents

The Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 No. 203 (the Act) and Environmental Planning and Assessment Regulation 2000 (Regulation) provide the legislative framework under which the planning system operates. 

The Act identifies the State Environmental Planning Policies (SEPP's), and Local Environmental Plans (LEP's) as legally binding planning controls for Council, its residents and businesses operating in the City to comply with.

What Are State Environmental Planning Policies ?

These are documents that are to be considered by a consent authority in assessing development. They apply to all local government areas within New South Wales. A complete list of  State Environmental Planning Policies can be found on the Department of Planning, SEPP listing webpage.

What are Local Environmental Plans?

Local Environmental Plans (LEPs) are prepared by councils to guide planning decisions in their local government areas and establish the requirement for the use and development of land. Through zoning and permissible land uses they allow councils to supervise the ways in which land is used.

Blacktown Local Environmental Plan 2015 applies to all land within the local government area, additional information can be found here.

Non Statutory Documents

Development Control Plans (DCP's), codes, policies and engineering guidelines are non-statutory planning documents.

These may be prepared and approved by either a council or the Director-General of the Department of Planning and contain detailed planning provisions and must be consistent with their associated environmental planning instruments (SEPP's and LEP's). 

DCP's, codes, policies and engineering guidelines generally:

  • contain a range of measures such as planning principles, objectives and controls for individual building uses; i.e. Residential, Commercial and Industrial buildings.

  • apply to either a single site, a precinct or an entire local area.

Additional information regarding Blacktown Planning Controls can be found here.

Blacktown Development Control Plan 2015

The detailed guidelines contained within a DCP are in addition to the provisions of the legal planning instrument (SEPP or LEP). DCP's are important in the planning system because they provide a flexible means of identifying additional development controls and standards for addressing development issues without the need for a formal statutory plan.

Blacktown Development Control Plan 2015 (BDCP 2015) provides a comprehensive guideline for the design of buildings in the Blacktown local government area.

Blacktown Engineering Guideline and Specification

This is the technical document that stipulates the standard to which development and infrastructure related works must comply with. Further information on these documents can be found within the Engineering design library found here.

How do I know which controls apply to my land ?

The planning controls applying to a specific parcel of land can be identified in a Section 149 Certificate (Zoning Certificate) which will be issued upon receipt of an application form for additional information regarding applying for certificates please click here.

If you need more information, please contact our Development and Design Directorate on (02) 9839-6000.