Planning schemes are the primary tool to enable state and local government land use planning policies to be implemented and effect positive change to the built environment.

The efficiency and effectiveness of planning schemes is important to Victoria’s economy and liveability. Each year the planning system processes around 55,000 planning permit applications, which represents around $30 billion of future investment in Victoria.

The Victorian Planning Provisions (VPP) is the template on which all Victorian planning schemes are based. The VPP sets standardised planning scheme provisions that are designed to implement the six principles for planning schemes in Victoria set out in section 2.3:

  • Digital first
  • User focused
  • Consistent
  • Proportional
  • Land use focused
  • Policy and outcome focused

This guide will help practitioners implement these principles in the day to day formulation and drafting of planning scheme provisions.

Importantly, the guide sets out key rules for practitioners when preparing a planning scheme provision. These rules complement existing directions and guidance and seek to ensure that:

The intended outcome is within the scope of the objectives and power of the Act and has a sound basis in strategic planning and policy.

A provision is necessary and proportional to the intended outcome and applies the VPP in a proper manner.

A provision is clear, unambiguous and effective in achieving the intended outcome.

The guide applies to the preparation and application of a planning scheme provision in Victoria. It is primarily intended for use by practitioners considering or preparing a new or revised provision for a planning scheme.

The guide sets out and explains:

  • The principles that should underpin the creation, selection and application of a planning scheme provision.
  • How a planning scheme relates to the VPP.
  • Rules and advice about how the various components of a planning scheme operate.
  • How to select, write and apply various elements of a planning scheme.
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