Planning for the future of the Central Coast
On 23 November 2016 Council resolved to prepare a Planning Proposal to consolidate the provisions of the Local Environmental Plans (LEPs) operating across the Central Coast Local Government Area (LGA). Council also resolved to prepare a consolidated Development Control Plan (DCP) to harmonise planning controls.
The ultimate goal is to have one LEP and one DCP that will help improve our local environment, encourage investment, create new jobs and quality housing for the growing population of the Central Coast.
Public Exhibition and Community Engagement
The draft CCLEP and CCDCP were placed on public exhibition from 6 December 2018 to 28 February 2019. A number of information and pop up sessions were held by Council at locations across the Central Coast during this period. Please refer to the Community Engagement folder in the document library for further information.
A copy of the exhibition material including the Planning Proposal, draft CCLEP, draft CCDCP, and other supporting documents can be downloaded from the Document Library on this page.
Councillors were provided with an information package which included a summary of all public exhibition material and related information. A copy of the information package can be downloaded from the documents library on this page.
A report on the outcomes of the public exhibition process was to be considered by Council on the 9 December 2019 but was deferred for further information. The report was then considered at the 9 March 2020 Ordinary Council Meeting where finalisation of the CCLEP was deferred for revision and reconsideration at a date yet to be announced. Staff are working with Councillors to progress the draft Central Coast Local Environmental Plan (CCLEP) and draft Central Coast Development Control Plan (CCDCP).
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What is a Local Environmental Plan (LEP)?
A Local Environmental Plan (LEP) is a type of Environmental Planning Instrument (EPI). It is the primary legal planning document for guiding land use and planning decisions made by Council. Through zoning and development controls, the LEP allows Council to plan and regulate growth and development in a sustainable way.
What is the consolidated Central Coast Local Environmental Plan?
The draft Central Coast Local Environmental Plan (CCLEP) is the consolidation of four existing, separate planning instruments into a single plan. The four plans to be consolidated include:
- Gosford Local Environmental Plan 2014 (GLEP 2014)
- Gosford Planning Scheme Ordinance (GPSO)
- Interim Development Order No. 122 (IDO 122)
- Wyong Environmental Plan 2013 (WLEP 2013)
The draft CCLEP is the result of a comparison undertaken between the planning instruments of the former Local Government Areas (LGAs). This single CCLEP will simplify the planning process for the community and help to ensure consistency across the region.
What is a Development Control Plan (DCP)?
A Development Control Plan (DCP) is a document with supporting maps and information which supports the relevant Local Environmental Plan (LEP), and which provides the “how to” information in relation to Council’s requirements to create sustainable and high quality development outcomes
What is the consolidated Development Control Plan?
The draft Central Coast Development Control Plan (CCDCP) combines Wyong Development Control Plan (WDCP 2013) and Gosford Development Control Plan (GDCP 2013) into one document to be read in conjunction with the draft CCLEP.
The CCDCP provides a single set of controls across the Central Coast for different land uses, such as housing, industrial development and environmental controls for tree and vegetation management and floodplain management.
What is the difference between a Consolidated and a Comprehensive Local Environmental Plan?
A Consolidated Local Environmental Plan will focus on aligning existing zones and development standards of the two former Councils to have a consistent plan. This will also include zoning those lands deferred from the Gosford Local Environmental Plan 2014 (GLEP 2014) to a Standard Instrument zone as directed by the Department of Planning and Environment. As stated in the Guidelines for Merged Councils, Council is required to present a planning proposal to harmonise the former Gosford City and Wyong Shire Council Plans to present to the new Councilors after the September 2017 elections.
Once the CCLEP has been adopted, work can commence on a Comprehensive Local Environmental Plan. This will provide an opportunity for Councillors and Council staff to work with the community to form a Comprehensive Plan. It is envisaged that this will take a number of years to complete and be adopted. In the meantime, the community will have one Consolidated CCLEP to refer to and use.
Why are the Central Coast Local Environmental Plan and Central Coast Development Control Plan being prepared?
On 12 May 2016, a proclamation to merge the former Gosford City and Wyong Shire Councils and form the Central Coast Council was announced by the Department of Premier and Cabinet.
At the same time, the NSW State Government issued Guidance for Merged Councils on Planning Functions. These guidelines recommended Council analyse the differences in the current planning controls, including existing and deemed Environmental Planning Instruments (EPIs) and Development Control Plans (DCPs).
The draft CCLEP and CCDCP have been prepared in response to these guidelines.
What does “Consolidated” Local Environmental Plan and Development Control Plan mean?
In relation to the draft CCLEP and draft CCDCP, consolidation means the following:
1. The review and assessment of existing provisions and controls;
2. The adoption of the most practical control for application across the Central Coast Local Government Area (LGA); and
3. The application of Standard Instrument zones to those lands deferred from Gosford Local Environmental Plan 2014 (GLEP 2014).
Consolidation does not mean:
1. The amendment of existing provisions and controls to change the intent or requirements; nor
2. The adoption of new provisions or controls which are currently not within existing instruments or plans.
What are the main changes under the Central Coast Local Environmental Plan?
The draft CCLEP is a combination of the most appropriate provisions from the WLEP 2013 and GLEP 2014. Where similar provisions exist, they have been retained. Where provisions are not similar, the most suitable provision has been proposed for retention. Site specific provisions and additional permitted uses have also been retained.
In some instances clauses have been amended to clarify intent and simplify the use and understanding of the provision.
The CCLEP does not propose to rezone land except:
- where an anomaly has been identified and is required to be rectified; and
- to zone those lands that are currently deferred from the GLEP 2014 and are still subject to IDO 122 and GPSO. These lands will be given a standard instrument zone which was determined through the Environmental Lands and Urban Edge Review.
What are the main changes to the Development Control Plans?
The draft CCDCP combines Wyong Development Control Plan 2013 (WDCP 2013) and Gosford Development Control Plan 2013 (GDCP 2013) into one document to be read in conjunction with the draft Central Coast Local Environmental Plan (CCLEP).
The CCDCP provides a single set of controls across the Central Coast for land uses such as dwellings or industrial development and environmental controls such as tree and vegetation management and floodplain management.
The CCDCP seeks to adopt the controls from each existing DCP which are most suitable for application to the broader Central Coast Local Government Area (LGA). The CCDCP does not seek to introduce new controls. Controls will be reviewed as part of the future Comprehensive DCP process.
Location specific controls are not being reviewed as part of this process and will be considered through a different project as part of the Comprehensive LEP/DCP Review. Opportunities will exist through the Comprehensive LEP/DCP process to review existing controls and develop new controls. This project will be a phased project which will be progressed over a three to five year period.
What is happening with the former Gosford’s ‘deferred matters’?
There are approximately 3,900 properties deferred (Deferred Matters) from the GLEP 2014.
The former Gosford City Council resolved that these deferred matters would be zoned to a Standard Instrument Zone within five years of the gazettal of the GLEP 2014. This was also a direction of the Department of Environment and Planning (DPE). Therefore, these matters must be resolved by 11 February 2019.
The rezoning of these lands forms part of the draft CCLEP. Until the CCLEP is made, IDO 122 and GPSO will continue to operate. The proclamation for the amalgamation decreed that these plans remain in place until a new Local Environmental Plan is adopted.
Why not go straight to Comprehensive Local Environmental Plan and Development Control Plan?
This was considered as an option, however this would take a number of years to complete which will mean that Central Coast residents will have to refer to four differing planning instruments in the meantime. Having to refer to multiple plans causes confusion and potential delays to planning and development.
The future Comprehensive LEP/DCP project will continue to simplify and develop controls that can be used in an e-Planning environment. This approach will allow systems to be developed where users can ask what planning controls are applicable based on where they propose development and what type of development it is. It is envisaged that this will take a number of years to complete and require a number of technical and investigative studies to be undertaken.
Why do a DCP Review? Are there new controls we need to be aware of?
The draft Central Coast Development Control Plan (CCDCP) is a consolidation of both the existing Gosford DCP 2013 (GDCP 2013) and Wyong DCP 2013 (WDCP 2013) to ensure consistency in development controls across the Central Coast. The draft CCDCP adopts the provisions from the existing DCPs considered the most practical and appropriate for application across the Central Coast.
This is a lot of information. Can we easily see which DCP controls have been adopted?
Each new chapter in the draft CCDCP is accompanied by a summary sheet that lists the primary controls that are proposed to be adopted and indicates whether they come from the current GDCP 2013 or WDCP 2013.
Are there instances where new controls have been adopted?
In some instances, DCP controls have been reviewed and updated to reflect newly introduced State Government requirements.
Are all DCP chapters from the former Councils being consolidated?
The consolidated DCP process proposes to reduce the number of DCP Chapters across the Central Coast from 112 to less than 80.
Many DCP Chapters relate to site specific controls (e.g. Town Centres) so these chapters cannot be consolidated. These chapters will bereviewed in the future as part of the Comprehensive Local Environmental Plan /Development Control Plan project. However, chapters that relate to sites where all works have been completed, superseded or have become irrelevant due to the introduction of State Government Policy have not been included in the draft CCDCP.
What is happening with site specific DCP controls for centres and other areas?
Location specific controls are not being reviewed as part of this process as they will be considered through the Comprehensive LEP/DCP project. These chapters have only been updated to reflect changes in related legislation and to remove references to the former Gosford City Council or Wyong Shire Council.
Opportunities will also exist through the Comprehensive LEP/DCP project to amend existing controls and develop new controls.
Are there new controls for housing development?
The DCP Chapters relating to dwelling houses and secondary dwellings were aligned across the Central Coast early in the amalgamation process in 2017. There are only a few changes which relate to the consolidation of LEP provisions. These changes relate to building height and floor space ratio controls. See the relevant summary sheet and draft DCP Chapter for more detail.
How will Council control the scale of development in the R2 – Low Density Residential Zone with the building height controls being removed from this zone in the LEP in the former Gosford LGA?
There will be little change here. Currently in the R2 residential zone under Gosford LEP 2014 there is generally a maximum building height of 8.5m with an additional clause in the draft CCLEP that allows for the roof form to protrude above this height limit.
It is proposed that the building height controls not be included in draft CCLEP and a maximum building height of 10m (which will include the entire roof area) be applied in the CCDCP as is currently the case in the majority of R2 Low-Density Residential zoned land in the former Wyong Local Government Area.
Controls restricting development to generally two storeys in height in the R2 Low-Density Residential Zone will remain in place across the Central Coast. Only in exceptional circumstances will 3 storey development be considered in these residential areas.
For proposed variations, such as building height, the applicant would need to demonstrate how issues such as sunlight access and potential view loss are addressed, as well as ensuring the existing and proposed character of the area has been considered.
What has happened to the Character DCP Chapters for townships in the former Gosford LGA?
Local character is, and will remain a consideration for development applications, especially when variations from any development standards are sought.
Local Character Statements, along with adopted Council Masterplans, will not only remain a consideration where an application for a dwelling house involves a request for variation to Council controls, but will also be a consideration for applications for other land uses, such as residential flat buildings and boarding houses.
Why are Dual occupancies and multi-dwelling housing now proposed to be dealt with in the same DCP Chapter?
The controls for medium to high density residential development have been arranged to better reflect the scale of development and the relationship to NSW State Government Policy.
Residential Flat Buildings (RFBs) 3 or more storeys in height are subject to the Department of Planning and Environment’s Apartment Design Guide introduced under SEPP 65. This overrides many but not all DCP controls for this land use.
Multi-dwelling housing and dual occupancy development (generally 1 to 2 storeys in height) have a similar scale to each other and will be subject to SEPP Exempt and Complying Development – Medium Density Housing Code (also known as the “Missing Middle”) which will become effective in the Central Coast LGA as of 6 July 2019.
Are there any provisions to address the shortfall in car parking on the Central Coast?
The consolidated CCDCP does not revise car parking controls relating to town centres. The summary table provided with the car parking chapter of the draft CCDCP indicates which parking provisions are proposed to be adopted for specific land uses. The car parking provisions reflect the provisions of the two former Councils considered the most appropriate for adoption. Consideration has also been given to Roads and Maritime Services Guide to Traffic Generating Development.
Will controls for flooding change?
The existing flood mapping for both former Councils remain in place. There is currently a project underway to harmonise flood mapping across the Central Coast.
When will the harmonised flood mapping be available for the public to view?
If the process of harmonising the flood mapping is delayed and cannot be made available for the public to view for a period of at least four weeks during the public exhibition period, it will be recommended to Council that the existing provisions relating to floodplain management and water cycle management remain in place at this stage. If this does occur once satisfactory harmonised flood mapping is available a fully consolidated Floodplain Management Chapter will be placed on public exhibition.
Will controls for coastal management change?
There has been no consolidation of development controls for coastal development. The draft Coastal Management Chapter will maintain different controls in the north and south until such time as a set of consistent controls has been developed for Central Coast Council. This process is to be informed by the Central Coast Coastal Zone Management Plan which is yet to be completed.