Putting people back into planning

A better way to plan South Australia's future

Often people only encounter the “Planning System” when they see inappropriate development or discover rezoning of land in their local area. At that point, many are horrified to realise that they have very few rights. It can be difficult to find information before decisions are made, hard to have your voice heard and nearly impossible to challenge bad decisions, whether made by a local council or the State Government.

The only people who seem to consistently get their way are from the big end of town – with large property developers also featuring prominently in the lists of donors to the old political parties. Many now understand that the rules are stacked against public participation.

Taking action

The Greens have been working with local community groups for many years on a campaign to Put People back into Planning.

The Greens will seek to amend plannings laws to:

  • Give the public greater access to information about planning decisions that affect them and their communities -  you deserve the right to know what is proposed and what has been approved;
  • Give the public the right to participate in planning decisions, including taking bad decisions to an independent umpire for review. Genuine participation means being able to have your say and to insist on proper processes being followed;
  • Prevent Governments from abusing planning rules at the expense of local communities and the environment.  Fast tracking favourite developments at the expense of public participation is undemocratic;
  • Ensure Parliament can properly scrutinise changes to planning rules.  Accountability means no more government-stacked oversight Committees that refuse to hold the Minister to account; and
  • Ensure that issues of climate change and biodiversity are properly taken into account when planning decisions are made.

The Greens will push for a revision of the “30 Year Plan for Adelaide” and all local planning schemes that:

  • Protects valuable farmland from urban sprawl;
  • Integrates public transport and other infrastructure into new and existing urban developments;
  • Protects open space and biodiversity;
  • Ensures heritage buildings, places and trees are protected; and
  • Includes enforceable rules around building heights, density and overshadowing to protect the rights of existing residents.