New laws introduced into State Parliament today aim to protect the Swan Valley’s unique character by providing clear planning guidance and outlining appropriate scales of tourism and development.
The new Swan Valley Planning Bill 2020 is built off the recommendations of the Swan Valley Action Plan and the Kobelke Report – with feedback from more than 700 local residents and businesses on preferred land uses, future tourism and development opportunities and the right to farm.
It establishes a single planning authority, streamlines planning processes to cut red tape, introduces a new planning scheme for the Swan Valley and sets preferred development types.
The Bill also establishes a ‘right to farm’ protecting the Swan Valley as a productive rural area.
Development within the region is currently subject to three different planning regimes which often create tension and difficulty in achieving consensus on development proposals.
Replacing the outdated Swan Valley Planning Act 1995, the Bill proposes a new Swan Valley Planning Committee as a statutory body to provide oversight for all planning and development.
A Swan Valley Strategic Coordination Group will also be created to provide an advisory role to Government across a broad range of matters including tourism, environment and planning.
A new bespoke planning scheme will come into effect early next year, replacing the existing dual scheme system – the City of Swan Local Planning Scheme No. 17 and the Metropolitan Region Scheme.
The Swan Valley is home to more than 7,000 residents and attracts over two million visitors annually seeking to explore its many wineries, recreational activities and tourist attractions.