CairnsPlan 2016

The Cairns region is expected to continue to grow over the next 20 years. It is important that good planning processes are put in place to achieve a balance between continued growth and maintaining the qualities and characteristics that make the region special.

Cairns Regional Council has prepared the draft Cairns Region Planning Scheme to shape how the region grows and ensure the right development occurs in the right places.

The draft scheme has been developed over the last four years. A strategic directions paper was released in October 2011, introducing the new planning scheme project and outlining key policy directions. Council then undertook three rounds of consultation on the draft scheme:

  • Round 1: non-statutory consultation from 30 September to 1 November 2013. Over 500 people attended consultation activities and 150 submissions were received.
  • Round 2: statutory consultation from 27 October to 10 December 2014. Over 900 people attended consultation activities and 6592 submissions were received. Of these, 6365 related specifically to the Behana Gorge Key Resource Area (KRA38).
  • Round 3: consultation on proposed significant changes from 13 July to 25 August 2015. 47 submissions were received.

Council submitted the draft planning scheme to the Queensland Government on 24 September 2015, seeking Ministerial approval to adopt. Subject to Ministerial consideration, it is anticipated that the new scheme will be adopted and commence in early 2016.

The CairnsPlan 2016 was adopted by Cairns Regional Council on 24 February 2016 and commenced on 1 March 2016.

CairnsPlan 2016 Version 1.0 was superseded by CairnsPlan 2016 Version 1.1, which commenced on 1 July 2017.

CairnsPlan 2016

The CairnsPlan 2016 Version 1.0 is made up of two key components: the document itself, and the associated maps. The maps are available as PDF maps or can be viewed using the interactive mapping.

More information

For enquiries, phone us on (07) 4044 3044 or email

Provide feedback on the CairnsPlan 2016

Cairns Regional Council is committed to continuously improving the CairnsPlan 2016 and ensuring it stays up to date through an ongoing program of amendments. As part of this program, we would like to hear your feedback on the CairnsPlan 2016 and your suggestions for improvements.

  • To provide feedback, please complete the online feedback form. Once submitted, you will receive an email confirming that your feedback has been received.

You will be advised when amendments are available for review and comment. Please note that undertaking amendments to the CairnsPlan 2016 involves research, consultation and review from both Council and the State Government and this process can take more than 6 months.

If you have any enquiries about the amendments process, please contact

Last updated: 10 July 2017