What is a master plan?
- A document that sets out how a particular area can (as opposed to will) develop and redevelop into the future
- A high level plan intended to set out objectives and strategies to manage development and change over time
- A process that defines what is important about a place and how its character and quality can be conserved, improved and enhanced
- It is not a detailed design
Who prepares a master plan?
- In Canberra, EPD prepares master plans for all group centres, key transport corridors and areas adjacent to town centres
- Master plans are periodically reviewed to ensure their currency
- The community and industry are engaged throughout the process, to ensure local issues and community values are considered
- This does not mean all of the communities interests can be accommodated. Community views can sometimes be conflicted, may not account for broader policy outcomes or may raise issues that are not appropriately dealt with by a master plan, such as maintenance of a centre
- Other government agencies sometimes prepare master plans, but they are typically development plans for specific sites or confined locations
How is a master plan prepared?
- Extensive community engagement
- Consultation with other government agencies
- Seeking advice from specialist consultants on matters such traffic, parking, transport, economic viability, urban design, social planning and heritage
- Preparation of a draft vision, objectives and design principals
- Draft master plan presented back to the community and stakeholders for comment
- Presented to government for endorsement
- Master plan is released to the public, as the final document in this comprehensive process
How is a master plan implemented?
It is released to the public following government endorsement. Implementation may involve:
Territory Plan variation
For many centres a variation to the Territory Plan will be necessary. In some instances a precinct code with specific details relating to the centre will be introduced into the Territory Plan. The precinct code will provide the opportunity for the building heights and land uses outlined in the master plan to be realised by lease holders.
Sale of territory owned land
Some territory owned land may be identified as appropriate to sell to a developer. Other government agencies take this land to market for sale.
Infrastructure and public space improvements may be required. This will involve various government agencies, and funding through future government budgets.
It is up to the business community to take advantage of opportunities identified within a master plan to invest in a centre and help it meet the community’s needs. Often many of the proposed changes are on existing developed sites, therefore a plan is likely to take a number of years to be realised.
Ongoing community engagement
The community is involved at each stage of development, either through consultation on changes to the Territory Plan or notification of development applications.
Completed master plans
These master plans currently have a dual status:
- Under the Territory Plan that commenced on 31 March 2008, elements of the plans have been incorporated into relevant Codes. Others have not been incorporated but are provided here for information.
- Under the previous Territory Plan – which remains applicable for policy matters and assessment of development applications lodged before 31 March 2008 – these master plans may or may not be listed on the Register of Planning Guidelines. The Register is only relevant for the previous Territory Plan.