Western Australia

Review of R-Codes underway in WA

THE West Australian Government's review of the Residential Design Codes (R-Codes) is currently underway, aiming to ensure they remain relevant for the changing nature of housing.

R-Codes, prepared by the Western Australian Planning Commission (WAPC), control all forms of residential development, from single houses to multi-unit developments, and are incorporated, by reference, in local planning schemes across WA.

Planning Minister John Day said the codes were important to set the qualitative standards for acceptable housing development. He announced the two-year review of R-Codes in September last year.

"As the population grows and our expectations of housing change, the building industry is being encouraged to find new and better ways to provide a variety of housing options," Mr Day said.

"The R-Codes need to be relevant and the review will ensure they are updated to suit living choices and changing circumstances with respect to household size, type and composition."

Mr Day said all stakeholders involved in residential design and development in WA are invited to provide feedback on the following issues:

  • Changes to specific provisions, in particular those relating to overshadowing, privacy, ancillary accommodation and minimum parking requirements;
  • Terminology changes and additional clarification of how to use the provisions;
  • New codes approval flowchart and processes;
  • Renaming detailed area plans as area specific plans and inclusion of these into the codes policy framework, to clarify the relationship of the codes to the subdivision process;
  • The use, format and accessibility of local planning policies; and
  • Proposed changes to the minimum site areas in R20 to R40 codings.

Mr Day said the consultation paper also outlined a suggestion to remove subdivision control from the R-Codes and instead include the controls in a separate WAPC policy.

The Minister said comment on this specific proposal was sought, and changes could be made at a later stage of the review if the idea was supported.

Public comment on the revised R-Codes is invited until 31 August 2011 and more information is available from the Planning WA website at <http://www.planning.wa.gov.au>.

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