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This guide can be used by proponents and department planning assessors to assist with the planning assessment and approval process.

A submitted application should comprehensively inform the Minister for Planning about the project. It should ensure that all relevant information is provided about the background, context, requirements and approvals being sought.

Assessment and approval timeframe

This timeframe does not reflect the time taken for the proponent to provide any further information.

Steps in the assessment process and timeframes - Pre-application; Decision on State Project status 1-2 weeks; Conclusion with decision up to 8 weeks
Process steps and timeframe (indicative)

Document format requirements

  • Provide documents in accessible electronic formats suitable for publishing on the internet (MS Word where possible).
  • Accessible electronic requirements include:
    • maximum 10MB file size
    • suitable for screen reader and those with colour blindness.
  • Hard copies are not required, unless specifically requested.
  • Apply plain English writing principles when preparing the project proposal.
  • Ensure that diagrams and maps are also easily readable along with the text.

Step 1 – Pre-application

Speak to us

Contact the State project concierge – submit a request online with details about your project.

Submit the approval pathway requirements and consideration of project facilitation to assess the application and for the Minister for Planning to consider.

  1. Confirm State project qualification concerning:
    • Delivery of projects by, on behalf of, jointly, in partnership with, or funded by the State of Victoria or a public authority, or on Crown land.
    • Demonstrate the projects ability to be delivered by (or have commenced construction before) 2025 - in support of Victoria’s economic recovery from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  2. Provide high level information about:
    • proponent/applicant department or agency and contact details
    • project name and address
    • municipality(s)
    • project delivery method – is it public, private, or a public-private partnership?
    • type of project – a short description
    • current stage of the project
    • why is the approval process proposed/required?
    • delivery timeframes.

We will contact you within 1 business day to discuss the project planning requirements and arrange the way forward.

Pre-application project briefing meeting

A pre-application meeting allows you to present the detail of the project and discuss the project planning issues and requirements with our planning officers.

Initial information should be provided 2 business days before the meeting to ensure planning officers have an understanding of the proposal.

The information to be provided before or during the meeting should include:

Information What to include
Proposed project use and development and project area. Indicative development plans, images, maps and aerials to assist.
Initial planning review to indicate permit triggers and application content. Indicate where the project is consistent or inconsistent with any planning provisions in the planning scheme for the site.
Consultation proposed or completed and the 52.30 approval pathway. Identify the key stakeholders and community.
This information will inform discussions about the extent of consultation the Minister may deem necessary for the project
Extent of environmental impacts and sensitivities. In terms of impact to:
  • native vegetation and other tree or vegetation removal
  • biodiversity
  • flora and fauna
  • waterways
  • catchments
  • coastal
  • soils
  • bushfire and other considerations.
Detail the proposed areas of protection or avoidance.
The public realm, amenity impacts and improvements. In terms of impact to the:
  • built form
  • character
  • shadowing
  • wind
  • visual
  • noise
  • any other impacts
Other legislative requirements or tools to be used as part of the project. Examples:
  • Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act)
  • Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act 1988
  • Heritage Act 2017
  • Aboriginal Heritage Act 2006
  • Marine and Coastal Act 2018.
Public or private land required for temporary or permanent acquisition. What is the method for occupation or acquisition?

All presentation material from meeting(s) is to be supplied to our planners.

Before application lodgement

Confirmation between the proponent and DTP of:

  1. State project eligibility documentation to be submitted
  2. Confirmation of consultation required
  3. Application documentation and timing for the submission.

Step 2 – Obtain state project status

State project status may be sought before the submission of other application requirements prescribed by clause 52.30 to confirm the approval pathway process.

52.30-2 State project decision

Provide information that satisfies the Minister that a proposed project is a state project and meets the requirements of clause 52.30-2. This could be in the form of a letter or report that provides details and supporting documentation to demonstrate how the project meets one or more of the criteria.

Supporting documentation may include:

  • description of the proposal
  • the extent of the project area
  • concept plans or detailed plans, visualisations, landscape plans, or other material used to provide detail of the development.
  • land titles and ownership
  • government media releases
  • details of funding
  • project delivery timeline
  • letters from the council or other relevant stakeholders
  • a statement confirming constancy with the listed plans and policies identified under this clause and may require support from the relevant council or agency
  • proponent statement confirming self-assessment of the project and that no Environmental Effects Statement or referral is required, or confirming a decision that no EES is required subject to conditions and that the proponent is undertaking the necessary step to satisfy the conditions
  • detail the environmental, social and economic effects of the use and development to assist the Minister for Planning considerations.

The request is lodged by completing the State project concierge form

We will provide the proponent with written confirmation of state project status for consideration under this provision.

Step 3 – Project application

The application should be a comprehensive package of documentation to satisfy clause 52.30. The responses should be concise and address the requirements.

A response against each requirement of the clause is not always necessary. If any of the requirements are not relevant to the project, provide a brief reason why.

Each required document will be assessed against the requirements of the provision and must be to a standard and content to the satisfaction of the Minister for Planning.

The application documentation will be reviewed and a request for further information may be issued. After further information is satisfied the project approval assessment will be completed.

Refer to clause 52.30 of the Victoria Planning Provisions to understand application requirements.

Consultation requirements

Consultation with a range of stakeholders and community engagement is an important part of any state project.

As notice and review requirements do not apply to the planning process for applicable state projects, it is expected that the proponent must undertake extensive consultation before commencement.

The consultation and engagement process be undertaken by the proponent. Engage Victoria provides consultation services for state projects.

The extent of consultation must be discussed and confirmed during pre-application. It should reflect the scale and level of impacts of the development. Additional consultation may be required or directed by the Minister. The Minister may also directly seek the views of any party, where considered relevant.

Public authorities that must be consulted include those that are specified as a referral authority in the planning scheme. Any relevant referral authority advice about the proposed use or development must be provided as part of the application.

The application must address advice provided by a Determining Authority, and should address advice by a Recommending Authority. This is to be detailed in the consultation report and as part of the application documentation. The advice should be provided in its original form – letter or email.

The Minister may also directly seek the views of the referral authority.

Consultation report

Consultation is often an ongoing process through the life of the project and the consultation undertaken must be summarised into a report.

The report should detail the public consultation and include:

Consultation methodology

The who, how, when, why, and what will be done as part of the project consultation process.

Who are the relevant consultation groups? For example:

  • Council(s)
  • Community groups
  • Agencies
  • Residents/occupiers
  • Landowners

How will the community be adequately informed about the impacts? The consultation needs to reach the targeted audience and provide a range of opportunities to participate. The project impacts may create significant public interest.

When the consultation occurred or will occur – this may include stages of the consultation activities, to date and proposed in the future, as the project unfolds.

Why or reasons for the extent of distribution or targeted consultation – may be assisted by maps of the distribution area.

What detail was distributed during the consultation process – this should include project detail about:

  • the extent of the project area
  • concept plans or detailed plans, visualisations, landscape plans, or other material used to provide detail of the development
  • vegetation/tree and biodiversity/environmental impacts or protections
  • potential impacts
  • planning approval process
  • description, and representative samples, of material distributed to the community and stakeholders.

Include details of feedback tools, for example surveys, submissions, workshops. Include how the feedback was collated, managed and considered in the project response.

At the time approval is sought for the consultation requirement there will be further stages of consultation associated with the detailed design and construction phases of the project. These should also be identified and detailed in the consultation report.

Consider and respond to feedback

Provide detail about:

  • the number of submissions received
  • descriptions of matters raised by submitters and how they have been considered
  • responses to matters raised, including any resultant changes to design or construction methodology
  • response to the council’s submission/concerns
  • response to referral authority advice
  • detail of any response provided back to submitter/stakeholder.

The consultation requirements may be varied or waived by the Minister for Planning.

Other pre-commencement requirements

The type and scale of the project will determine the level of detail needed in planning application documents and supporting information required.

The level of justification for each consideration and the project overall should be proportional to the impact of the project. The responses should be concise and relevant considerations need to be addressed. A detailed response against each part of this clause is not always necessary. If any of the requirements are not relevant to the project, provide a brief reason why.

The project proposal application is to be submitted to the Minister for Planning in the form and content set out below.

This should be a comprehensive package. Some components of the development may also be submitted for separate approval at different stages of the project. Some background information may have been already been provided as part of the State Project decision.

Required documentation

A plan that shows the boundary of the land on which the use or development will be carried out. For some projects additional land is necessary for temporary or permanent occupation.

A site description and analysis plan that provides existing context detail. This may include both visual and written information.

The type and scale of project will determine the extent and level of detail provided about the strategic, precinct and interface context for the project.

Detail should include:

  • Use
  • Hours of operation
  • Likely effects, if any, on the land and surrounding land and uses, for example, noise, light spill, shadowing, vibration.

In some instances, detailed plans may not be necessary. Concept plans may provide sufficient detail about the project from a planning perspective rather than detailed engineering drawings.

Renders or photomontages should be provided to assist with visualising the built form outcome for the project.

It is also important to consider and represent any off-site amenity impacts the project may cause, such as shadow, visual bulk, overlooking.

The project may benefit from a design review, for example, Office of Victorian Government Architect (OVGA) review or project design panel.

Tree and vegetation removals, Tree Protection Zone (TPZ) encroachment or `no-go protection’ areas should be identified.

A summary of the policy and strategic planning context of the declared project, including underpinning plans or studies.

Address how the proposed use or development responds to purposes, objectives, or statements of significance or risk of any zone, overlay, or other provision that would apply but for the planning exemptions. Detail the existing relevant planning controls and permit triggers and how the project has considered and responded to them.

This can be presented in a simple table format:

  • Control or Provision requirement
  • Use or development
  • Proponent response

Specify the relevant referral authorities from clause 66 of the planning scheme and if they have been provided with a copy of the application. This will be also detailed in the consultation requirement.

  • A report that details how each 'No EES required' condition has been considered and addressed in the design, construction and operation of the proposed development.
  • A copy of any report, plan or other document required to be prepared under those conditions.

We will work with the proponent to ensure conditions are satisfied and considered in relation to the project approval.

Plans may be required for the management or mitigation of potential adverse effects or impacts on the environment or amenity from the proposed use or development, during and following construction.
These may be necessary due to the planning framework or type of project.
The type of plans may include:

  • Environmental Management Framework
  • Construction Environment Management Plan
  • Flora and Fauna Management Plan
  • Urban Design Guidelines or Statement
  • Visual Impact

Details of the stages of the project and schedule of works. This may also outline the anticipated application submission timeframes.

In some instances, the project can be approved in stages which may allow preliminary works.

The Minister for Planning may consider additional information necessary to assist the assessment of the proposed use or development or the plans and documents required to be prepared under this clause.

Urban Design and Public Spaces Framework or Statement
  • The positive and negative impacts on the public realm.
  • Where relevant, urban design principles should guide the project.
  • In some instances, as part of later stages of the project, stakeholder or community input may be sought into the public realm outcomes or the project might go through a design review process. Landscape concept plans and integration into the existing area is an important consideration with way finding and pedestrian/bicycle access where appropriate.
Tree, vegetation and biodiversity assessment reports

The extent of vegetation, including native vegetation, and/or tree impacts – removals or greater than Tree Protection Zone 10% – will be identified on the detailed plans.

Supporting documentation may be required, such as:

  • an arborist report
  • flora and fauna assessment
  • targeted threatened species survey.

It is understood that projects will have impacts on the environment which may be unavoidable, however, the potential impacts must be known, and avoidance and mitigation measures have been demonstrated before approval is sought or given.

Vegetation or trees could be identified through a permit trigger via clause 52.17, overlays, or street trees or other community or council identified significant or landscape amenity trees.


In some instances, there may be a heritage permit trigger, but the heritage place/significance will remain unaffected by the proposal. This should be detailed to determine if a Heritage Impact Statement is required

If a Cultural Heritage Management Plan is required or one is being prepared voluntarily, then its status and any conditions may require consideration in the proposal.


Potential contamination should be identified and in most instances the matter should be referred to the Environment Protection Authority where relevant.

Consult PPN30: Potentially contaminated land for further guidance.

Native vegetation requirements

The extent of native vegetation to be removed for the project should be known before the application is lodged (that is, during the pre-application stage and other pre-commencement requirements).

The application should provide:

  • Information about the native vegetation to be removed per the Guidelines for removal, destruction or lopping of native vegetation
  • What is the extent of proposed native vegetation removal? Refer to:
    • Ecological Vegetation Class
    • conservation status
    • extent of patches
    • size
    • number of large and scattered trees and species identified.
      Include maps to show the location and extent.
  • How have impacts been minimised?
  • What is the offset requirement? Is it able to be secured?

Step 4 – Document approval

When project assessment is complete, documentation will be approved either by the Minister or under delegation.

The approval confirmation may be via a letter or endorsed documents.

Page last updated: 14/06/23


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