BRIMBANK Council has welcomed planning reforms which will be be rolled out from July.

Planning Minister Matthew Guy last week announced the state government had completed a review of Victoria’s residential planning regulations. 

He said the new regulations would be the strictest in Australia and were aimed at protecting the neighbourhood character of existing suburbs.

Mr Guy said the government had received more than 2000 submissions from individuals, businesses, councils and community groups.

He said three new residential zones would limit residential development through lot size restrictions and provide a mandatory height limit of eight metres.

Brimbank’s acting general manager of city development Stuart Menzies said a council submission had supported the introduction of three residential zones but also called for local variations to some developments in line with the council’s ‘Home and Housed’ strategy.

The strategy outlines the need for more housing to cater for ageing populations in Keilor and Sunshine, and significant population growth in Sunshine. 

It also aims to develop suitable housing for moderate growth expected in Deer Park, St Albans, Sydenham and Taylors Lakes.

“The new zones will result in an expectation of increased density in some areas, while limiting development in other areas,” Mr Menzies said.

He said council had been given until mid-2014 to implement the new zones. Existing planning permits will remain valid, with current applications assessed under the current zones. 

“The level of control for planning permits for the council is about the same. But there will be a clearer direction for the type of residential that is suitable in different locations.”