Phase 2 Engagement - Now Open

The Bass Coast contains distinctive rural and coastal landscapes, productive agricultural land, and sensitive environments of significant biodiversity value. The area attracts lifestyle residents, as well as holiday makers and includes the popular tourist destination of Phillip Island.

The small coastal towns along the Bass Coast are experiencing increasing urban development pressures, due to the municipality’s high growth rate and proximity to Melbourne. There is a need for greater planning certainty to ensure these stay liveable and sustainable communities into the future.

The Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) is working in collaboration with the Bass Coast Shire Council, and Traditional Owners, the Bunurong People in preparing the draft Statement of Planning Policy, with input from local communities and other key stakeholders.

Phase 2 Engagement - Now Open

Phase 2 engagement for the Bass Coast Distinctive Area and Landscape project is now open. The feedback we receive through this phase of engagement will help us to prepare a draft Statement of Planning Policy (SPP).

The Bass Coast DAL Discussion Paper has been prepared for this phase of engagement and is available in the document library. We are seeking feedback on a draft 50-year vision statement and potential policy approaches for the SPP.

Survey

The following survey will provide an opportunity to help shape the draft Bass Coast Statement of Planning Policy. The survey closes at midnight on 12 April 2020.
Which of the following statements best describe your connection to Bass Coast:
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VISION

The SPP will include a 50-year vision to guide land use and development in Bass Coast. A draft vision has been prepared based on feedback from the first phase of engagement and is available here Bass Coast Draft Vision.

To what extent do you agree with the draft vision for Bass Coast?
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STATEMENT OF PLANNING POLICY DOMAINS

The SPP will include objectives and strategies for six policy domains. Each policy domain and potential policy approaches are outlined below. Your responses will help guide the strategies to be included in the SPP for specific areas.

Environment and Biodiversity

To protect and enhance the biodiversity and environmental values of the Bass Coast DAL, the SPP could include strategies to:

  • Retain and increase native vegetation including establishing biolinks to connect high value ecological areas
  • Reduce the impact of weeds and pests
  • Set effective planning controls to manage urban development near high value ecological areas
  • Introduce land management strategies to reduce urban and agricultural run-off into the natural environment
  • Utilise knowledge and practices of traditional custodians to improve land management.

To what extent do you agree these strategic directions?
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Landscape

To protect and enhance the landscape values of the Bass Coast DAL, the SPP could include strategies to:

  • Protect and manage significant rural and coastal landscapes through clear planning controls
  • Guide development within settlements, to ensure it is sympathetic to the surrounding landscape through built form controls (e.g. building heights and setbacks)
  • Protect key viewing corridors and vantage points
  • Protect green-breaks between townships and avoid sprawl along the coast
  • Retain and increase native vegetation cover that contribute to significant landscapes.
To what extent do you agree with these strategic directions?
You have 800 characters left.

Heritage

To protect and enhance the heritage values of the Bass Coast DAL, the SPP could include strategies to:

  • Actively involve the Bunurong in the management, protection and enhancement of Aboriginal cultural heritage
  • Build awareness and knowledge of Bunurong heritage, language and cultural practices
  • Identify and monitor sites of heritage significance and fill existing knowledge gaps
  • Ensure heritage sites are appropriately protected.
To what extent do you agree with these strategic directions?
You have 800 characters left.

Economy and Infrastructure

To build a sustainable and prosperous Bass Coast economy, the SPP could include strategies to:

  • Build a sustainable, year-round visitor economy that aligns with Bass Coast’s landscapes, environment and cultural values
  • Protect high value and productive agricultural land
  • Facilitate major transport upgrades to the Bass Coast Highway and Phillip Island
  • Reinforce and grow the role of Wonthaggi as the major service centre in the region
  • Improve and upgrade town centres so they meet the social and economic needs of residents and visitors
  • Protect state significant resources and assets including mineral sands, the Victorian Desalination Plant and pipeline, and renewable energy opportunities.
To what extent do you agree with these strategic directions?
You have 800 characters left.

Risks and Resilience

To build resilience to climate change impacts, the SPP could include strategies to:

  • Prevent sensitive land uses in high risk bushfire, coastal and riverine flooding areas
  • Reduce fossil fuel use and greenhouse gas emissions (for example, prioritisation of public and active transport modes, such as walking and cycling)
  • Mitigate coastal erosion risks
  • Ensure future land use and development planning aligns and integrates sustainable and resilient water management practices.
To what extent do you agree with these strategic directions?
You have 800 characters left.

Settlement and Townships

To protect and enhance township character while managing future housing growth, the SPP may include strategies to:

  • Provide clear direction about the preferred locations for future urban growth by defining a settlement hierarchy and long-term settlement boundaries where required
  • Reinforce Wonthaggi as the regional centre and location for long term housing growth
  • Manage growth in sensitive coastal townships and hamlets to protect the lifestyle, character and environmental values
  • Ensure the design of new housing fits the existing township character through effective built form controls (e.g. building heights, setbacks, landscaping)
  • Ensure new development areas are well planned, have appropriate access to infrastructure and services, and respectful of sensitive environments and landscapes
  • Encourage a range of housing types to support choice and changing demographics.
To what extent do you agree with these strategic directions?
You have 800 characters left.

PRECINCTS

Please refer to page 6 in the Bass Coast DALs Discussion Paper which outlines the Bass Coast precincts.

Which precinct do you most associate with?
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Overview

Results of phase one engagement

The Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) undertook its first phase of public engagement from 10 July 2019 to 12 August 2019.

The engagement sought community feedback on:

  • What is most valued about the Bass Coast?
  • What threats there are to these values?
  • Ways we could protect what is valued?
  • The vision for the future of the Bass Coast?

A summary of phase one engagement findings and the full public engagement report are available to download from the Document Library.

Declaration

In October 2019 Bass Coast was declared a Distinctive Area and Landscape under the Planning and Environment Act 1987. The declaration triggers the requirement to prepare a Statement of Planning Policy.

The declaration area is the municipal district of Bass Coast Shire and a map of the Declared Area is available to download from the Document Library.

Statement of Planning Policy

The Statement of Planning Policy will include a 50-year vision and land use strategies to better protect the unique features of the Bass Coast for current and future generations. It also provides the opportunity to designate long term settlement boundaries.

The Policy will be informed by strategic planning work already undertaken, relevant technical studies and outcomes from community engagement.

Next steps

Now the declaration of the Bass Coast as a Distinctive Area and Landscape has been made, work on the Statement of Planning Policy has begun.

A second phase of public engagement is being undertaken in March 2020 which provides an opportunity to provide input on the policy directions. A further phase of public engagement will occur in mid-2020 on the draft Statement of Planning Policy, which will include a public submissions process.

To keep informed of future engagement opportunities, please subscribe to receive project updates.