Amendments to SEPP (Infrastructure) 2007

On 15 December 2017, significant changes were made to the State Environmental Planning Policy (Infrastructure) 2007.

Amendments to the State Environmental Planning Policy (Infrastructure) 2007 (ISEPP) were exhibited by the Department of Planning and Environment from 3 February 2017 to 7 April 2017.

The amended ISEPP reflects changes beyond what was publicly exhibited.

The key changes are outlined below.


New definitions (clause 5)

  • “Lighting for Roads and Public Spaces Standard”

The ISEPP now incorporates a new definition for the “Lighting for Roads and Public Spaces Standard”. This definition incorporates a suite of Australian Standards into the ISEPP for lighting.

Previously, the ISEPP only referred to Australian Standard 1158:2007 as the lighting standard for roads and public spaces.

  • “Construction works”

The definition of “construction works” now specifically states that construction works covers investigations including geotechnical and other testing, surveying and sampling.


Heritage (clause 14)

Under the amended ISEPP, public authorities will now be subject to additional requirements if the development is likely to have “more than a minor or inconsequential effect” on certain heritage items or conservation areas.

Previously, development carried out by or on behalf of a public authority, that was likely to have an impact that is not minor or inconsequential on” certain heritage items or conservation areas was subject to additional development controls.


Additional consultation requirements for public authorities (other than councils) (clause 16)

Public authorities carrying out certain types of development under the ISEPP are now required to consult more widely with other public authorities. In some instances, consultation is now required with the Commonwealth Department of Defence, the Mine Subsidence Board, and the Sliding Spring Observatory.


Exempt development and demolition (clause 20)

Under the general requirements for exempt development under the ISEPP, a new paragraph has been added which specifically says that exempt development “must not involve the demolition of a building or work that is, or is part of, a State or local heritage item. Furthermore, if exempt development does involve demolition, it must be in accordance with the appropriate Australian Standard.


Complying development certificate conditions (clause 20C)

A complying development certificate for complying development under the ISEPP is now required to have additional conditions. These new conditions relate to:

  • the procedure to be followed if Aboriginal objects or other archaeological objects are discovered during the course of work; and
  • sediment and erosion control measures for vehicles.

Development on land used for air transport facilities (clause 23)

It is now possible to obtain consent for tourist and visitor accommodation within the boundaries of an existing air transport facility.


Deletion of educational establishment provisions (clauses 27 – 32)

Clauses relating to educational establishments have been deleted from the ISEPP.

The deleted clauses allowed for a range of works to be completed at existing schools or TAFE facilities, either with consent, without consent, as exempt development or as complying development. There was also a clause requiring consent authorities to take additional considerations into account when considering a development application for the purposes of a school.


Exempt development for electricity transmission or distribution (clause 43)

The amended ISEPP has exempt development provisions for works to electricity lines that convey electricity at a voltage of 66kV or less.

Previously, the exempt development provisions for electricity transmission or distribution could only be completed on electricity lines that had a capacity less than 33kV.


Changes to controls for health services facilities (clauses 56 – 58C)

The ISEPP now includes:

  • allowances for health service facilities to be carried out by any person with consent in additional zones, including R2 Low Density Residential, and B1 Neighbourhood Centre;
  • a wide range of development can now be carried out with consent on State land by a public authority if the development is within the boundaries of an existing health services facility – including things like child care facilities, commercial premises, and residential accommodation;
  • a range of development can now be carried out without consent on any land by a public authority if the development is within the boundaries of an existing health services facility – including things like the demolition of buildings, helipads, and car parks – and this work must be notified in accordance with new notification requirements;
  • a range of exempt development can now be carried out within the boundaries of existing health facilities, including things like roads, cycleways, information boards, lighting, and landscaping;
  • a range of complying development can now be carried out within the boundaries of existing health facilities, including things like buildings for training or education, and premises to service patients, staff and visitors.

New controls for operational land (clauses 58D – 58F)

The ISEPP now allows for a range of development to be completed without consent if it is carried out on operational land by or on behalf of a council. Consent will no longer be required for development like roads, pedestrian pathways, recreation areas and facilities, visitor information centres, landscaping and lighting.

The ISEPP also allows for a range of development to be completed as exempt development if it is carried out on operational land by or on behalf of a council. It allows for development like walking tracks, bicycle-related storage facilities, vehicle barriers and play equipment.


Parks and other public reserves (clauses 65 – 66)

The ISEPP now allows for a range of development to be completed without consent if it is carried out by or on behalf of a council on a public reserve under the control of the council, including things like roads, pedestrian pathways, recreation areas and facilities, visitor information centres, landscaping and lighting.

The ISEPP also allows for a range of development to be completed as exempt development if it is by or on behalf of a council on a public reserve under the control of the council. It allows for development like walking tracks, bicycle-related storage facilities, vehicle barriers and play equipment.


Port, wharf or boating facilities (clauses 69 – 72)

The new ISEPP allows for a range of new development types to be completed with consent, or as exempt and complying development in port areas that are managed by the Newcastle Port Corporation. The changes provide Newcastle Port Corporation with more flexibility to manage the land within port areas.


Public administration buildings and buildings of the Crown (clause 77A)

It is now possible for public administration buildings and buildings of the Crown to be considered exempt development where the development is for the purposes of landscaping, or for the use of a building as a public administration building.


Railways and rail infrastructure facilities (clauses 81 – 82A)

It is now possible to obtain consent for tourist and visitor accommodation in a rail corridor if the development is carried out wholly or partly above a railway station. It is also possible to get consent for retail or business premises in a railway station, transport interchange or car park used by commuters.

The new ISEPP also allows for a range of new exempt development, including things like automatic teller machines, coffee carts, and the use of existing rooms in railway stations for various purposes (like businesses, offices, and shops).


Development in or adjacent to rail corridors and interim rail corridors (clauses 85 – 86)

The ISEPP now includes additional assessment requirements for some development types that are adjacent to rail corridors and could have an adverse effect on rail safety. The amendments also expand the coverage of these additional assessment requirements to include land that is separated from a rail corridor by a road or road-related. Previously, they only applied to land that was “immediately adjacent to rail corridors“.

The amended ISEPP also provides assessment requirements for excavation that is in, above, below or adjacent to rail corridors. Previously, these requirements did not apply to excavation below rail corridors.


Sewerage systems (clauses 105 – 107)

Provisions relating to sewerage systems have been restructured and now incorporate definitions from the Standard Instrument Local Environment Plan.


New controls for shooting ranges, state sport and recreation centres (clauses 107A – 107D, 109A – 109B)

New clauses have been introduced into the ISEPP for shooting ranges, on land in and around lawful shooting ranges. The effect of the changes is that a variety of development in and around shooting ranges can now be completed under the ISEPP.

New clauses have also been introduced that allow for development to be carried out by or on behalf of a State Sporting Venues Authority with consent, including backpackers’ accommodation, function centres, medical centres, and recreation facilities. Consent is no longer required for environmental facilities and recreation areas.


Stormwater management systems (clauses 110 – 112)

It is now possible for any person to obtain consent for stormwater management systems by any land. Also, public authorities no longer require consent buildings up to 12m in height if they are for the purposes of stormwater management systems.


Waste and resource management facilities (clause 121AA)

New categories of exempt development have been introduced if the development is in connection with a waste or resource management facility, including things like emergency works, maintenance, landscaping, investigations, and shelters.


Water supply systems (clauses 124 – 126)

The amended ISEPP now prescribes land use zones in which water treatment facilities may be carried out. It also allows for maintenance depots and schemes for water reuse to be completed without the need for development consent, and water reticulation systems to be developed by any person on any land without consent.

The amended ISEPP also allows public authorities to do things like maintenance and telemetric equipment works as exempt development.


Subdivision of Sydney Harbour and adjacent land (clauses 129B – 129C)

The amended ISEPP allows for the subdivision of land that is owned by the Roads and Maritime Services that is in or adjacent to Sydney Harbour. The consent authority for this purpose is the Minister for Roads, Maritime and Freight.


New special provisions (clauses 130 – 132)

The amendments have introduced new complying development provisions in relation to water supply and sewerage connections between Sydney and the Hunter.


Schedules

Schedule 1 Exempt Development – general has been updated, including updates to developments for the purposes of demolition, fencing, investigations, scaffolding, and signs.

Schedule 4 Repeals has been deleted from the ISEPP.

Schedule 5 Savings and transitional provisions has been updated to reflect how the new amendments impact on development for which a consent was lodged, or was being carried out, on 15 December 2017


Map updates

Maps have been updated, including the following:

  • Interim Rail Corridor map for the CBD Rail Link and CBD Metro
  • Sports and Recreation maps for Sydney Academy, Myuna, Milson Island, Lake Keepit, Burrendong, Lake Ainsworth, Jindabyne, Broken Bay, Borambola , and Berry; and
  • Castlereagh Liquid Waste Disposal map.

The amended ISEPP can be accessed here, and the amended maps can be accessed here.

Posted by

Alyce is a civil engineer and a practicing lawyer, who has a desire to share her insights on the legal and practical realities of the development industry.

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