Overview

The Victorian Government is committed to protecting the significant economic, environmental, cultural and community values found in the peri‐urban areas surrounding Melbourne, Geelong and other regional cities.

In 2018 Macedon Ranges region was declared as the first distinctive area and landscape under the new Part 3AAB of the Planning and Environment Act 1987. The government has also announced its intention to declare three new coastal areas - Bass Coast, Bellarine Peninsula, and Surf Coast.

These areas of outstanding environmental and cultural significance are being protected so that they can continue to be enjoyed by current and future generations. They have unique environments with productive and scenic landscapes, and due to their proximity to Melbourne and other regional cities, they are under pressure from urban encroachment and growing visitor numbers. These areas are also susceptible to the impacts associated with climate change, including extreme weather events.

By declaring an area as a Distinctive Area and Landscape it will:

  • Require the preparation of a Statement of Planning Policy (SPP) led by the State Government in partnership with local government and Traditional Owners.
  • Require the development of a long-term vision and strategies to protect distinctive areas in consultation with local communities
  • Introduce the opportunity for protected settlement boundaries for townships – like Melbourne’s urban growth boundary.

We invite you to help shape the visions and strategies of the places you care most about.

Please click on the tile for each region where you live, work or visit for further information. Engagement on the Surf Coast and Bellarine Peninsula Distinctive Areas and Landscapes projects will be open from 13 May 2019.

images credit: Visit Victoria