Our Heritage Team Expands to Include Aboriginal and Historical Archaeological Services


We are excited to announce the appointment of Mitchell Cleghorn as Associate Director within our heritage team.

Mitchell is a heritage consultant, archaeologist and anthropologist with over nine years of project management and leadership experience on major infrastructure and specialist heritage projects across Australia. His experience includes coordination of complex projects including the ARTC National Heritage Asset Management Strategy, and provision of strategic advice on heritage management for major mining and resource sector clients, construction professionals and government bodies. He has a particular interest in early modern contributions of First Nations people to Australia’s rural landscape and how we recognise and protect those contributions.

Mitchell’s expertise allows City Plan to expand our heritage services to include the following Aboriginal and historical archaeological assessments and services:

  • Provision of research, field assessment, heritage management, planning and archaeological field services of Aboriginal and historic period sites.
  • Traditional Owner engagement and relationship management.

For further information on the services offered by Mitchell or our heritage team phone 02 8270 3500.


Our Heritage Team Expands to Include Aboriginal and Historical Archaeological Services2022-02-24T16:17:18+11:00

City Plan Extends Range of Services to Include Independent Mediation & Conciliation


City Plan has extended its range of services to include independent mediation and conciliation.

Our Heritage Director, Kerime Danis, has recently become an NMAS Mediator, accredited with the Mediation Institute to aid in her Expert Witness services in the NSW Land & Environment Court proceedings. Kerime has established considerable skills in the ability to act as a mediator in assisting two or more participants to manage, settle or resolve disputes or to form a future plan of action through a process of mediation, or conciliation in respect of Heritage Planning and Property issues.

How can a mediator help?

The role of a Mediator/Conciliator is to remain independent to the issues at hand, and guide the parties through issues with the aim of reaching a mutually beneficial outcome. Kerime’s extensive heritage planning and conservation knowledge allow her the ability to quickly grasp the issues at hand. In this respect she is able to help the parties to:

  • Identify, clarify and seek understanding of each party’s underlying needs and issues in dispute,
  • Develop alternatives,
  • Generate and evaluate options,
  • Negotiate options, and
  • Assist parties to work toward reaching a practical and mutually-satisfying outcome, and making a decision(s) .

The advantage of this service is that it relieves existing stretched staff resources. Mediation has the ability to reduce costs as it eliminates the need to outsource the running of a s34 conference or appeal hearing if prior agreements of both parties can be achieved. The savings to budget in staff and dollars can be significant. With the aim of parties discussing and resolving issues, mediation services can be used at any time during the Development Application or Planning Proposal assessment period. Once an application is within the Land & Environment Court System, our services can be invaluable to get the parties talking, with the view to agree to an outcome prior to full hearing.

Should you wish to discuss this service further, or obtain a fee quotation, please do not hesitate to contact Kerime Danis on kerimed@cityplan.com.au

City Plan Extends Range of Services to Include Independent Mediation & Conciliation2021-08-25T14:58:52+10:00

New Planning Portal Fees Being Introduced as of 01 July


The Department has amended the NSW Environmental Planning and Assessment Regulation 2000 (the Regulation) to introduce a range of nominal fees for certain planning applications, certificates and payments that are to be paid by the applicant as part of the digital application process on the NSW Planning Portal.

These fees are different to the lodgement and assessment fees charged by councils and private certifiers. They have been introduced to support the ongoing maintenance and delivery of the NSW Planning Portal and the related ePlanning Digital Services.

The Regulation amendment will come into effect from 1 July 2021. Fees will be as follows:

The Department is developing payment functionality on each of the relevant ePlanning Digital Services to enable applicants to pay all relevant fees online prior to lodgement.

New Planning Portal Fees Being Introduced as of 01 July2021-05-07T13:11:22+10:00

Introduction of Design & Building Practitioners Act 2020 & Regulations 2021


As of 01 July 2021 the Design and Building Practitioners Act 2020 and the Design and Building Practitioners Regulation 2021 comes into effect. It applies to all Class 2 residential buildings or any building containing a Class 2 part. Click here to find out how it will affect your development moving forward.


Introduction of Design & Building Practitioners Act 2020 & Regulations 20212021-05-07T13:04:33+10:00

Biodiversity Certification For Western Sydney


What is it?

The Department of Planning, Industry and Environment (DPIE) has released for public comment, the Draft Cumberland Plain Conservation Plan (the Draft plan), and an Explanation of Intended effect for a proposed State Environmental Planning Policy for Strategic Conservation Planning (the SEPP). The Plans aim to create a new biodiversity assessment framework for Western Sydney.

The Draft Conservation plan is a regional scale strategic biodiversity assessment.  It has been prepared to satisfy the strategic biodiversity certification requirements of the NSW Biodiversity Conservation Act 2016 and the assessment requirements of the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999. 

If the requirements of the Acts are determined by the Commonwealth and State Environment Minister’s to have been satisfied, then the area will receive biodiversity certification. Biodiversity certification creates a streamlined process that removes the need to assess biodiversity issues on a site by site basis.

The certification would enable development in the following areas:

  • Greater Macarthur Growth Area
  • Greater Penrith to Eastern Creek Investigation Area
  • Western Sydney Aerotropolis
  • Wilton Growth Area.

The proposed SEPP will give effect to land use outcomes identified in the Draft Conservation Plan.  Implementation measures include applying E2 (Environmental Conservation) zones to certain lands, and identifying matters for consideration when developing lands mapped as strategic conservation land.

What does it mean for me?

  • The Plan identifies a range of lands that will be protected. It is difficult to get plans changed once made, so it is important to check that the draft plan correctly shows your land’s environmental value.
  • Environmental conservation works will be funded through State Infrastructure Contributions, representing a cost to development. The quantum of the contribution is yet to be determined.
  • The Plans will assist in understanding the constraints and capacity of lands

How can we help?

City Plan is able to provide advice on how the new draft Plans will affect your land and make a submission to the public exhibition.

For more information please contact Mark Schofield (Director) on (02) 8270 3500.

Biodiversity Certification For Western Sydney2020-09-07T14:52:38+10:00

Saying ‘Thank You’ With A Wellbeing Day


To thank our team for their work during the COVID crisis, City Plan has announced they are rewarding all their employees with a day of paid leave.

The City Plan Wellbeing Day will take place on Monday  14th September which will see all staff members take the day off.

Considering the health and wellbeing of our team is always important to us. Competing home and work demands, new health risks and feelings of loss linked to COVID-19 have impacted everyone.  We also recognise the company’s typical end of financial year celebration has not been possible this year, so we have introduced a Wellbeing Day, an initiative which rewards our team and provides time away from work to reflect, relax and recharge now the weather is warming up.

In addition to our usual health and well being initiatives, rewarding everyone with a day’s paid leave is one way we can continue to thank our team for their tremendous dedication and commitment under these trying circumstances.

To our clients, please note we have asked our team to use this as a day of rest and as such all our offices will be closed, we will not be available for meetings and will not respond to emails on this day.




Saying ‘Thank You’ With A Wellbeing Day2020-09-07T11:31:18+10:00

David Ryan Responds to Release of RBA’s Discussion Paper


City Plan Executive Director, David Ryan, responded  recently to the release of the RBA’s discussion paper “The Apartment Shortage”, which suggests that apartment supply is being restricted by planning regulations and this in turn has a large effect on property prices. David’s view is that whilst complex, the NSW planning controls are only a marginal factor in price and property prices were much more the result of commercial factors than of regulations. If you would like further advice on planning controls and valuation, please do not hesitate to contact David or one of our other experienced Directors.

To view the article and David’s comments visit the domain article “You’re not paying $355,000 too much for your Sydney apartment: planners”

David Ryan Responds to Release of RBA’s Discussion Paper2020-08-21T14:49:22+10:00

Council Operations during Covid-19 pandemic


In response to the COVID-19 outbreak, all local Councils are implementing measures to protect staff and the community from the spread of the virus.

Within Sydney a number of Councils have closed customer service centres until further notice, with others reducing operating hours. Within the Hunter, all Councils have already reduced their in-person contact with the public and are doing their best to continue ‘business as usual’, particularly for anything that doesn’t require face to face activities. Most Councils already have e-portals to lodge applications, and many services are available online or via phone.  We have put together a list detailing the status of each Council however, given how quickly things are changing at the moment, we would recommended that you call or email Council in the first instance rather than attend their office if you require planning advice.

All drop-in sessions and face to face community engagement have also ceased as a result of the changes, which may impact the timeframes for approvals or strategies relying on consultation.

We do expect delays as Council staff adjust to operational changes, including migrating staff to working from home arrangements, and disruptions to how – and how often – Councils meet. This may lead to longer determination times, and Councils may struggle to meet the timeframes expected to update their long-term planning frameworks, including the preparation of Local Strategic Planning Statements and Local Housing Strategies.

We are doing our best to support Council staff and our clients through this period of unprecedented disruption. Please refer to our website for further detail and if you have any questions or concerns, feel free to reach out.

Council Operations during Covid-19 pandemic2020-03-26T12:31:34+11:00

Projected Population Growth Expected for Western Sydney Updated


It’s been 3 years since the NSW Government updated the NSW population projects. Since 2016 there have been significant announcements on new infrastructure and the location of future housing, influencing migration and access to jobs. The latest data published this week models these changes and gives a different outlook for the future population of Sydney. But where is the biggest change?

In the Western City District of Sydney there will be an extra 150,000 people in 2036 when the 2016 projection is compared to the new series. Penrith’s new 2036 population of 350,000 people is 80,000 higher. Blacktown is projected to get 48,000 extra people. Not every LGA had an increase. City of Sydney’s projection for 2036 has been revised down by 35,000. Canterbury-Bankstown has also been revised down by 20,000.

In a city with so much activity it’s no surprise that projections change. What’s critical is that users of this data reflect on changes and make sure their strategic decisions are based on the latest evidence.

Need some help understating the changes? Give Chris O’Dell a call on 8270 3500.

#westernsydney #populationgrowth #sydney


Projected Population Growth Expected for Western Sydney Updated2019-12-19T17:53:00+11:00
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