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Low Rise Housing Diversity Code : Update



There have been some interesting developments since 1 July 2020. The Code is now active across all NSW LGAs without further extension to the ongoing deferrals that have plagued the Code since its inception in July 2018.


Previously referred to as the 'Low Rise Medium Density Housing Code', the Code was renamed; 'Low Rise Housing Diversity Code' consistent (almost) with the the 2nd recommendation of the independent review undertaken by Roberta Ryan and Neil Selmon. Indeed many of the 18 recommendations made by the report have been implemented in spite of some last minute jostling by several LGAs to further defer the Code.


Controversy continues however as Private Certifiers appear to be nervous about approving applications under the Code due to some discrepancies and interpretational issues that they fear may expose them to scrutiny and potential reprimand.


We too have stumbled across some discrepancies and have accordingly advised the Department of Planning to clarify intent and refine the policy.


We have also made broader submissions to the Department of Planning and Planning Minister with regard to a number of implementational issues associated with the Code and surprisingly received responses. It is clear that the Code is an important piece of legislation for Robert Stokes and for the Department of Planning, but it remains to be seen whether economic forces and site availability will achieve the level of supply and diversity that is anticipated by implementation of the Code. We are certainly doing our best to overcome these constraints.


There will undoubtedly be some teething issues as the 'kinks' get ironed out of the policy, and as the industry attains greater confidence in this type of delivery.


We are working towards our own demonstration project, and will keep you posted as we move towards proving the benefits of Polyhouse and our unique way of implementing Low Rise Housing Diversity.


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