Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)2019-08-20T10:02:35+10:00

Frequently Asked Questions

Below are some commonly asked questions about this project. If you have any other enquiries, please contact Council at future@hornsby.nsw.gov.au

What is a Local Strategic Planning Statement?2019-03-06T15:28:49+10:00

A Local Strategic Planning Statement (LSPS) is a document that will set out a 20-year vision for land-use in the local area, the special character and values that are to be preserved, shared community values and how council will manage growth and change.

The LSPS will be drafted in Plain English and include maps, images and other visual aids wherever possible. It will be designed to be easily read by anyone in the community wanting to understand:

  • Areas that may change in the future;
  • Areas of special character and importance to the community;
  • Planning priorities for the Local Government Area;
  • Issues of particular value and how they will be addressed in council’s land use plans.

Local Strategic Planning Statement

How will Council use the LSPS?2019-01-23T23:40:04+10:00

Council will use the LSPS to provide consistent strategic reasoning when:

  • Explaining the land use requirements to the community;
  • Justifying the decision of a development application;
  • Providing expert advice at the Land and Environment Court;
  • Council wants to review its strategic direction.
What strategies and plans are being updated or prepared?2019-03-05T05:00:22+10:00

The following list identifies the technical studies that are being prepared to inform the preparation of the Local Strategic Planning Statement. 

  • Demographic Analysis
  • Housing Strategy
  • Community and Cultural Facilities Strategic Plan update
  • Heritage Review
  • Hornsby Town Centre Review
  • Economic Development Strategy
  • Environmental Sustainability Strategy
  • Rural Lands Strategy update
  • Active Living Hornsby Strategy update

Please refer to the Areas of Study page for more information.

When will the community have input?2019-07-01T16:07:36+10:00

Right from the start. We are encouraging input throughout the life of the project.

There will be a number of formal opportunities to get involved with the Future Hornsby projects. A number of the strategies will seek community input throughout their preparation. A formal exhibition of the draft Local Strategic Planning Statement is planned for 19 August 2019.

In the meantime you can provide any preliminary comments, feedback or issues for consideration at the Get Involved page.

How long will the Future Hornsby review take?2019-08-30T14:16:09+10:00

The Future Hornsby review is scheduled to run for the next 18 months until June 2020.

The following indicative key dates are worth noting:

  • November 2018 to July 2019 – review and update studies
  • March to May 2019 – Preparation of the draft Local Strategic Planning Statement
  • 19 August 2019 – Draft Local Strategic Planning Statement on exhibition
  • February 2020 – Report to Council on the outcome of the exhibition period
  • March 2020 – Local Strategic Planning Statement updated and finalised
What are all of the acronyms?2019-01-23T23:40:22+10:00

There is a lot of jargon and difficult terminology in planning. Below is a list of the acronyms relevant to Future Hornsby:

Acronym Full phrase What is it and what does it do?
LEP Local Environmental Plan
  • Identifies where certain uses (e.g. residential, business, industrial, rural) can be located.
  • Specifies certain rules about the size, layout and position of buildings on certain land.
  • Identifies places, areas and buildings of heritage significance.
LSPS Local Strategic Planning Statement
  • A Plain English 20-year vision for how land will be used in Hornsby and how council will manage change over that time.
  • Identifies areas of special character that are to be protected.
  • Identifies areas for potential future change.
DCP Development Control Plan
  • Design Guidelines for site specific matters including heritage, privacy, landscaping, solar access, built form, environmental constraints and access.
PP Planning Proposal
  • A document that requests changes to council’s Local Environmental Plan and justifies why the changes need to be made.
  • A planning proposal will rely on the findings of the studies to inform changes to the Local Environmental Plan.
Will I be contacted?2019-04-12T12:42:14+10:00

Hornsby Shire Council have engaged third party consultants to survey members of the community this will be done via online surveys and phone calls. This is to help us get a better understanding of the needs and wants of the community and to make informed decisions about our future.

Why have I been called or emailed to participate in a survey about environmental sustainability?2019-04-12T12:42:20+10:00

Council is undertaking a variety of community engagement methods to understand the Hornsby Shire community’s values and attitudes towards sustainability and the environment. One of these methods is a mixed-mode (phone and email) survey that will be statistically representative of the community. This survey is being undertaken by a third party provider, McNair Yellowsquares. 

My number is private, or listed on the Do Not Call Register. Why have I been called?2019-04-12T12:42:25+10:00

In order to ensure that their surveys are representative, McNair yellowSquares is permitted to call both silent numbers and numbers that are on the Do Not Call Register. However, you can request McNair yellowSquares not to call you again.  

If you are contacted directly and do not wish to be called again, you can ask the surveyor to take you off their call list. If they have left you a message, you can call 1800 669 133 and request the same.

Do I have to participate in these phone or online surveys?2019-04-12T12:42:30+10:00

You are not obliged to participate in these surveys, and any involvement is voluntary. If you choose to complete the survey, McNair Yellowsquares will send you a $10 GiftPay voucher as a thank-you for completing their phone or online survey. Please allow 14 business days to receive this. Please note that this payment is not administered by Council. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Below are some commonly asked questions about this project. If you have any other enquiries, please contact Council at future@hornsby.nsw.gov.au

When did Council decide to undertake a new Rural Lands Study?2019-08-20T10:07:11+10:00

In October 2018, Council endorsed a program of work which will ensure the Hornsby Local Environmental Plan (HLEP) 2013 is aligned to the planning priorities and actions in the North District Plan and to inform a Local Strategic Planning Statement (LSPS).

The endorsed program of work includes a Rural Lands Study to consider the future of the rural areas in the context of the actions and responsibilities in the North District Plan, including support of a placed-based planning approach to  conserve the rural character of these areas.

What is the North District Plan?2019-08-20T13:53:09+10:00

The North District Plan was released by the Greater Sydney Commission in March 2018. It provides a 20-year plan to manage growth. It aims to enhance the liveability, productivity and sustainability of Sydney into the future and sets out planning priorities and actions for councils to respond to and address in their planning policies.

The Rural Lands Study will need to address the requirements of the North District Plan, in particular Planning Priority N18: Better Managing Rural Areas. The objective of this Planning Priority is to ensure the environmental, social and economic values of rural areas are protected and enhanced.

The Plan includes the following actions for rural areas:

Action 69.  – Maintain and enhance the values of the Metropolitan Rural Area using place-based planning to deliver targeted environmental, social and economic outcomes.

Action 70. – Limit urban development to within the Urban Area.

Find Out More and Download the Plan
Why do we need another Rural Lands Study?2019-08-20T10:13:13+10:00

Council has obligations under the North District Plan to align its planning policies with the actions and responsibilities outlined in the Plan. This new Study is required to address the actions of Planning Priority N18: Better Managing Rural Areas of the North District Plan and set the strategic direction for our rural lands into the future.

Council’s planning framework for the rural areas has been informed by previous studies. Although Council has completed planning control reviews and community surveys in the past, the last comprehensive evidence-based study was completed in 1995. A lot has changed since this time, with new pressures and opportunities emerging.

The Study will build on the work of previous studies and identify challenges, constraints and opportunities for rural areas. The Study will provide the evidence and include recommendations for how we manage rural lands into the future.

What previous studies and work has Council done on rural areas?2019-08-20T10:14:12+10:00

Council’s approach to guiding development within the rural areas of the Shire to date has been informed by previous studies including:

  • The Rural Lands Study 1995;
  • Rural Resource Study 2006;
  • Rural Lands Planning Provisions 2009; and
  • Rural Lands Planning Community Issues survey undertaken in 2014.

The 1995 Rural Lands Study was the last comprehensive evidence-based Study that was completed. This Study informed the zoning and planning controls and lot sizes in our Local Environmental Plan (LEP). Other studies and surveys completed since that time have informed modifications to Council’s planning controls.

What was the outcome of the 2014 community survey?2019-08-20T14:00:16+10:00

The 2014 survey identified there was community support for the introduction of a number of development opportunities, including larger granny flats, introducing attached dual occupancies as a permissible land use and permitting larger roadside stalls that sell local produce.

The results of the survey generally indicated equal support for and against reducing the minimum lot sizes.

In response to the outcomes of the survey, Council initiated a planning proposal to amend the Local Environmental Plan (LEP) to provide opportunities for additional development supported in the community survey. In November 2016, amendments to the LEP were finalised that allowed the following development opportunities on rural zoned land:

  • Secondary dwellings up to 33% of the size of the principal dwelling (increased from 20%);
  • Attached dual occupancy up to 200sqm in floor area;
  • Roadside stalls up to 40sqm; and
  • Split zone lots (comprising rural and environmental protection zoned land) with a total area that complies with the rural zone lot size and maintains a minimum one-fifth of the site as rural zoned land.
View further information on split control lots in Part 6 of the Hornsby Development Control Plan 2013
What areas of the Hornsby Shire will be included in the Study2019-08-20T10:20:35+10:00

The Study will address the area defined under the State Government’s North District Plan as the Metropolitan Rural Area within Hornsby Shire. It includes the suburbs of Wisemans Ferry, Laughtondale, Singletons Mill, Canoelands, Maroota, Forest Glen, Fiddletown, Glenorie, Arcadia, Berilee, Middle Dural, Galston, Dural and Glenhaven. 

View Map of the Study Area
Who is preparing the Rural Lands Study?2019-08-20T10:21:27+10:00

Council has engaged the services of SGS Economics and Planning in partnership with RMCG (an environmental and agricultural consultancy) to undertake the Rural Lands Study.

What is the timeline for the Study?2019-11-08T12:03:43+10:00

The Study process is outlined in the table below:

Date Stage Task
July/August 2019 Stage 1 – Existing Situation Review of background material, including Council’s previous Studies and planning controls. Review of the current situation, including demographic profile, dwellings structure and economic/employment profile.
August 2019 Stage 2 – Identification of Landscape areas The consultants will break the rural areas down into smaller ‘landscape areas’ so that values, issues and opportunities can be considered case by case. A character statement will be prepared for each landscape area
August 2019 Community awareness campaign – Launch of photo competition To coincide with the commencement of the exhibition of the draft Local Strategic Planning Statement, information on the Rural Lands Study will be made available on our website so that the community is aware of this separate (but related) Study and its timeline. A photo competition will be launched to gain input on what is valued now in the rural areas and the hopes for the future of the rural areas.
October/November  2019 Stage 3 – Community Engagement Council will engage with the community to obtain feedback on the mapped landscape areas and character statements, including whether the mapped landscape areas and their boundaries are appropriate.
November 2019 Stage 4 – Review Community feedback will be considered in finalising the draft landscape areas and character statements, including the values, character, issues, pressures and opportunities in each landscape area.
Work on the Study will continue, including a review of the social and economic viability of villages, planning controls review and consideration of boundary interface issues.
Early 2020 Stage 5 – Recommendations Draft Rural Lands Study report prepared, which maps and identifies the landscape areas and character statements and provides recommendations for each area. This may involve suggestions for changes to planning controls to enable new opportunities or identify areas whether further studies or investigation is required.
2020 Public Exhibition It is anticipated that Council will place the draft Rural Lands Study on public exhibition in early 2020. The community will have the opportunity to provide feedback on the Study and its recommendations. Council will consider feedback and decide on the next steps, such as whether to endorse the Study and/or proceed with recommendations.
What is placed-based planning?2019-08-20T10:33:36+10:00

The Study will address the North District Plan and its actions to limit urban development in rural areas and undertake place-based planning to deliver targeted environmental, social and economic outcomes.

Place-based planning is a way to shape the future of our rural areas by concentrating on the look and feel of places, their form and their character, instead of focusing only on conventional categories of land use, such as suburb, zoning, etc.

The first step in a placed-based planning approach is to establish ‘landscape areas’ and a character statement for each. A landscape area is a place with shared characteristics such as landform, vegetation, land uses and other unique qualities. The community will have the opportunity to provide input on this first step during consultation in September/October of this year. 

What is a landscape area?2019-08-20T10:35:40+10:00

A landscape area is a place with shared characteristics such as landform, vegetation, land uses and other unique qualities. It is an area defined by the way a place looks and feels, and what makes it unique.

Identification of landscape areas has regard to the following characteristics:

  • The vegetation coverage and type
  • The topography of the land, geology and soil types
  • Patterns of development and lot sizes
  • Land uses (considering rural industry, agriculture, dwellings, commercial, services, shops, etc)
  • Heritage significance
  • Scientific, archaeological or environmental significance
  • Iconic views and important landmarks (such as Berowra Valley or the Hawkesbury River).

Once draft landscape areas and a character statement for each area is prepared, the community will have the opportunity to review and provide feedback on the appropriateness of the landscape area boundaries and character statements. This feedback may inform further changes to the identified areas and the character statements identified in the draft Rural Lands Study.

How can I get involved and how will I be notified?2019-09-30T14:30:27+10:00

The first part that the community will have input into is the landscape areas and character statements. Community feedback will be sought in October/November of this year on the appropriateness of the draft landscape areas and character statements.

This information will be made publicly available on Council’s website and will be available for viewing at the Council’s Administration building at 296 Peats Ferry Road Hornsby.

The community will have the opportunity to provide feedback through attending community workshops and via an online survey on Council’s website.

Details of the community consultation period and opportunities to register for a workshop will be notified on this webpage, in local newspapers and through letters to rural land owners.

Will smaller lots be allowed so I can subdivide my property?2019-08-20T10:38:43+10:00

We understand subdivision in rural areas is a key area of interest for the rural community. This has been the case for all previous studies and reviews undertaken in Council for rural lands, with arguments strongly put by those for and against a review of permissible lot sizes. Since Council announced it would be undertaking a new Rural Lands Study, we have received numerous community submissions.

This Study will provide the evidence base to inform appropriate planning responses to manage land into the future. This Study process involves place-based planning to consider the values, opportunities and constraints of each landscape area and to include recommendations for each.

Council is committed to the process of undertaking a new Rural Lands Study. Council will wait to see the recommendations of the draft Study and consider community feedback during exhibition of the Study in 2020, before making any decisions.

Any proposed changes will need to be considered with respect to infrastructure constraints, such as road and sewer capacity, environmental constraints including bushfire risk and bushland protection, as well as the North District Plan which includes actions to limit urban development in rural areas.

If, following the Study, Council does decide to proceed with lot size changes, amendments to our planning instrument (the Hornsby Local Environmental Plan) would be required. This would involve a Planning Proposal to be prepared and submitted to the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment for approval. 

Why are Seniors living developments (such as retirement villages) allowed in rural areas and what is Council doing about this?2019-08-20T10:39:45+10:00

Council’s local planning controls do not permit retirement villages (seniors living developments) on rural zoned land. However, these developments are permitted under a State Policy which overrides Council’s local planning controls. Under State Environmental Planning Policy (Housing for Seniors or People with a Disability), seniors living developments are permissible on land zoned for rural purposes so long as it adjoins land for urban purposes and meets other certain criteria outlined in the Policy.

Hornsby Council has made numerous representations to the Minister and the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment raising concerns about the proliferation of seniors housing in rural areas and has requested changes to the State Policy so that it does not apply in inappropriate locations such as rural areas. Council will continue to advocate for changes to this Policy so that Council’s efforts to plan for the future of rural areas is not undermined by State policy.

What will happen after the draft Rural Lands Study is exhibited in 2020?2019-08-20T10:40:29+10:00

The feedback received during the exhibition of the draft Rural Lands Study in 2020 will help inform Council’s future planning response and strategy for rural lands. Council will consider the recommendations of the Study and the matters raised in community submissions to determine the next steps. This may include Council endorsing the Study and proceeding to implement the recommendations of the Study (such as changes to planning controls) or consider alternative options.

How long does it take to change planning controls?2019-08-20T10:41:06+10:00

If, following the Study, Council does decide to proceed with amendments to planning controls, this requires further consultation with the community and (for amendments to our Local Environmental Plan) requires approval from the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment.

The time frame for the process for amendments to a Local Environmental Plan is not certain, however generally we would expect the process to take a minimum of two years for any changes to planning controls to be implemented.

Will Council report back to the community on feedback received during consultation?2019-08-20T10:43:38+10:00

Yes, Council will report back to the community via its website with a summary of the feedback received.

What is a Local Strategic Planning Statement?2019-03-06T15:28:49+10:00

A Local Strategic Planning Statement (LSPS) is a document that will set out a 20-year vision for land-use in the local area, the special character and values that are to be preserved, shared community values and how council will manage growth and change.

The LSPS will be drafted in Plain English and include maps, images and other visual aids wherever possible. It will be designed to be easily read by anyone in the community wanting to understand:

  • Areas that may change in the future;
  • Areas of special character and importance to the community;
  • Planning priorities for the Local Government Area;
  • Issues of particular value and how they will be addressed in council’s land use plans.

Local Strategic Planning Statement

How will Council use the LSPS?2019-01-23T23:40:04+10:00

Council will use the LSPS to provide consistent strategic reasoning when:

  • Explaining the land use requirements to the community;
  • Justifying the decision of a development application;
  • Providing expert advice at the Land and Environment Court;
  • Council wants to review its strategic direction.
What strategies and plans are being updated or prepared?2019-03-05T05:00:22+10:00

The following list identifies the technical studies that are being prepared to inform the preparation of the Local Strategic Planning Statement. 

  • Demographic Analysis
  • Housing Strategy
  • Community and Cultural Facilities Strategic Plan update
  • Heritage Review
  • Hornsby Town Centre Review
  • Economic Development Strategy
  • Environmental Sustainability Strategy
  • Rural Lands Strategy update
  • Active Living Hornsby Strategy update

Please refer to the Areas of Study page for more information.

When will the community have input?2019-07-01T16:07:36+10:00

Right from the start. We are encouraging input throughout the life of the project.

There will be a number of formal opportunities to get involved with the Future Hornsby projects. A number of the strategies will seek community input throughout their preparation. A formal exhibition of the draft Local Strategic Planning Statement is planned for 19 August 2019.

In the meantime you can provide any preliminary comments, feedback or issues for consideration at the Get Involved page.

How long will the Future Hornsby review take?2019-08-30T14:16:09+10:00

The Future Hornsby review is scheduled to run for the next 18 months until June 2020.

The following indicative key dates are worth noting:

  • November 2018 to July 2019 – review and update studies
  • March to May 2019 – Preparation of the draft Local Strategic Planning Statement
  • 19 August 2019 – Draft Local Strategic Planning Statement on exhibition
  • February 2020 – Report to Council on the outcome of the exhibition period
  • March 2020 – Local Strategic Planning Statement updated and finalised
What are all of the acronyms?2019-01-23T23:40:22+10:00

There is a lot of jargon and difficult terminology in planning. Below is a list of the acronyms relevant to Future Hornsby:

Acronym Full phrase What is it and what does it do?
LEP Local Environmental Plan
  • Identifies where certain uses (e.g. residential, business, industrial, rural) can be located.
  • Specifies certain rules about the size, layout and position of buildings on certain land.
  • Identifies places, areas and buildings of heritage significance.
LSPS Local Strategic Planning Statement
  • A Plain English 20-year vision for how land will be used in Hornsby and how council will manage change over that time.
  • Identifies areas of special character that are to be protected.
  • Identifies areas for potential future change.
DCP Development Control Plan
  • Design Guidelines for site specific matters including heritage, privacy, landscaping, solar access, built form, environmental constraints and access.
PP Planning Proposal
  • A document that requests changes to council’s Local Environmental Plan and justifies why the changes need to be made.
  • A planning proposal will rely on the findings of the studies to inform changes to the Local Environmental Plan.
Will I be contacted?2019-04-12T12:42:14+10:00

Hornsby Shire Council have engaged third party consultants to survey members of the community this will be done via online surveys and phone calls. This is to help us get a better understanding of the needs and wants of the community and to make informed decisions about our future.

Why have I been called or emailed to participate in a survey about environmental sustainability?2019-04-12T12:42:20+10:00

Council is undertaking a variety of community engagement methods to understand the Hornsby Shire community’s values and attitudes towards sustainability and the environment. One of these methods is a mixed-mode (phone and email) survey that will be statistically representative of the community. This survey is being undertaken by a third party provider, McNair Yellowsquares. 

My number is private, or listed on the Do Not Call Register. Why have I been called?2019-04-12T12:42:25+10:00

In order to ensure that their surveys are representative, McNair yellowSquares is permitted to call both silent numbers and numbers that are on the Do Not Call Register. However, you can request McNair yellowSquares not to call you again.  

If you are contacted directly and do not wish to be called again, you can ask the surveyor to take you off their call list. If they have left you a message, you can call 1800 669 133 and request the same.

Do I have to participate in these phone or online surveys?2019-04-12T12:42:30+10:00

You are not obliged to participate in these surveys, and any involvement is voluntary. If you choose to complete the survey, McNair Yellowsquares will send you a $10 GiftPay voucher as a thank-you for completing their phone or online survey. Please allow 14 business days to receive this. Please note that this payment is not administered by Council.