Draft Cairns Region Planning Scheme

Proposed changes to the draft Cairns Region Planning Scheme: July 2015

Following community feedback received during last year's statutory consultation on the draft Cairns Region Planning Scheme, Council proposes several changes to the draft scheme. These changes aim to accommodate balanced growth and development in the Cairns city centre and parts of North Cairns areas while achieving high design standards that celebrate our unique tropical identity.

Have your say: consultation period 13 July to 25 August 2015

During the consultation period 13 July to 25 August 2015, the community will be invited to consider and comment on the proposed changes. Properly made submissions must be lodged by 5:00pm on 25 August 2015.

The schedule of proposed amendments and information on how to lodge a properly made submission will be published here at the start of the consultation period.

Proposed changes to the draft Cairns Region Planning Scheme: July 2015

In response to community feedback received during last year's statutory consultation on the draft Cairns Region Planning Scheme, Council proposes several significant changes to the draft scheme. These changes aim to accommodate balanced growth and development in the Cairns city centre and parts of North Cairns while achieving high urban design standards that celebrate our unique tropical identity.

Council has drafted several "significant changes" to particular areas of the draft Cairns Region Planning Scheme. (A "significant change" is one that affects more than an individual property or a few individual properties, results in a major change in a policy position, changes the level of assessment or significantly changes applicable codes, zones, overlays or local plans as presented in the original draft Cairns Region Planning Scheme.)

In summary, the proposed changes are:

  • incorporating tropical urbanism, new design provisions and increased building height provisions within certain areas (Cairns city centre local plan area and the Building Height overlay area);
  • reducing the level of assessment for Dual Occupancies in the Low Density residential zone;
  • reducing the level of assessment for Council activities where undertaken by or on behalf of the local government, provides a net community benefit, and is consistent with the purpose of the zone (all zones);
  • clarifying the role and function of centres and requirements for development within centres and centre activities (Centre zones and Mixed Use zone).

You can view the proposed significant changes below, or inspect and/or purchase copies at Council's Administration Centre, 119-145 Spence St, Cairns.

The following maps are provided to help interpret the proposed changes to building heights:

Proposed Planning Scheme Policy – Tropical Urbanism

In addition to the above proposed significant changes, a new Planning Scheme Policy on Tropical Urbanism is proposed to provide guidance on meeting the assessment criteria within the draft Cairns Region Planning Scheme relating to Tropical Urbanism and the Qualities of Good Urban Places. The proposed planning scheme policy is on public consultation from 27 July 2015 until 25 August 2015.

You can view the proposed planning scheme policy below, or inspect and/or purchase copies at Council's Administration Centre, 119-145 Spence Street Cairns.

Have your say: consultation closes 25 August 2015

In accordance with the requirements of the Sustainable Planning Act 2009, Council invites the community to consider and comment on the proposed significant changes and the proposed planning scheme policy during the public consultation period 13 July to 25 August 2015. Properly made submissions must be lodged by 5:00pm on 25 August 2015.

To explain more about the proposed changes, Council will hold a community information session on Monday 3 August at 5 to 6:30pm (venue: Civic Reception Room, Council Chambers, 119-145 Spence Street, Cairns).  Bookings are essential - please register online to attend the community information session.

Submissions can be made:

  • in writing (by mail to PO Box 359 Cairns Q 4870);
  • online; or 
  • by email

Properly made submissions must state the name and residential or business address of each submitter; the grounds of the submission; and the facts and circumstances relied on in support of the grounds. Written submissions must be signed by each person making the submission; however signatures are not required for online and email (electronic) submissions.

NOTE: this round of consultation only seeks to capture feedback on the proposed significant changes to the draft scheme. Submissions lodged on issues other than the proposed significant changes will not be considered. Previously lodged submissions, including issues raised during the statutory public consultation period of 27 October to 10 December 2014, remain valid and Council continues to review those submissions. You do not need to re-lodge a submission based on issues previously raised.

Background: the draft planning scheme to date

Thank you to everyone who made a submission during the statutory consultation period (27 October to 10 December 2014). Council received 6700 submissions and we continue to review all properly made submissions. We will advise each submitter of our response to the matters raised. Your patience during this period is greatly appreciated.

The draft Cairns Region Planning Scheme documents and maps (current at 15 October 2014) can still be accessed via the links below. The information will not be updated further until the draft Cairns Region Planning Scheme is adopted.

To keep up-to-date on the progress of the draft Cairns Region Planning Scheme, please subscribe to Council's Planning Scheme eNewsletter.  

For enquiries, phone us on (07) 4044 3044 or email planningscheme@cairns.qld.gov.au.

Last updated: 24 July 2015