New Residential Zones
New residential zones were approved by the Minister for Planning in April 2015.
The zones determine the level of housing growth that can occur in residential areas of Yarra, including the height and density of new developments. Further information about the zones appears on the Department of Transport, Planning and Local Infrastructure website.
In early 2014 Yarra Council undertook extensive consultation to seek the community’s views on where the new zones should apply. Council’s recommendation was submitted to the then Minster for Planning on 29 April 2014.
Council’s recommendation aimed to achieve a balance of protecting its prized heritage areas, while identifying areas that could accommodate housing growth to meet the needs of Melbourne’s growing population.
The new zones approved for Yarra include:
- Neighbourhood Residential Zone
This zone applies to about 74% of Yarra’s former residential zone (Residential Zone 1). It restricts larger-scale development in Yarra’s heritage precincts and includes a building height limit of eight metres.
- General Residential Zone
This zone applies to about 26% of Yarra’s former residential zone. This zone is similar to Yarra’s former residential zone (Residential Zone 1), but with the added protection of limiting building heights to nine metres.
- The Residential Growth Zone was not introduced in Yarra (further info below).
To see which zone applies to your property, please view the maps on the Department of Transport, Planning and Local Infrastructure website.
Additional controls, known as ‘schedules’, apply to the residential zones. A table of schedules appears below.
Summary table of zones and schedules - approved 2015 (15.92 KB)
Differences between Council’s recommendation and the approved zones
The majority of Council’s recommendations were approved by the Minister for Planning, with some exceptions.
Maximum number of dwellings in the Neighbourhood Residential Zone
Council recommended a sliding scale that would determine the number of dwellings that could be built on a site depending on its size. The sliding scale ranged from two to 15 dwellings.
The Minister for Planning removed the sliding scale and determined a maximum of five dwellings per lot.
Council expects the impact of this change to be minimal. Approximately 80% of lots in the Neighbourhood Residential Zone are less than 300 square metres in size. This small size, combined with height restrictions of eight metres and other planning provisions – such as heritage overlays – would prevent most five-dwelling developments in the Neighbourhood Residential Zone.
No Residential Growth Zone
The Minister for Planning removed the requirement for the Residential Growth Zone in Yarra.
This zone provides for increased housing growth and density.
The Minister’s determination is consistent with Council’s position that the Residential Growth Zone is not needed because housing growth is already occurring in Yarra’s mixed use and commercial zones.
The process to evaluate the introduction of the Residential Growth Zone (draft amendment C179) is no longer required.
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Strategic Planning Unit