The Minister for Planning has established the Development Facilitation Program within the department to speed up the assessment and determination of identified priority projects that:

  • deliver investment into the Victorian economy,
  • keep people in jobs, and
  • provide a substantial public benefit.

Priority projects

Project selection

A project must meet the eligibility criteria below to be recommended for an accelerated assessment and determination. A recommended project does not mean an approved project.

The usual planning rules and policies apply. All projects assessed and implemented under the Planning and Environment Act 1987.

Projects are ineligible where the Minister for Planning:

  • is currently the responsible authority; and/or
  • has authorised or directed the Victorian Planning Authority (VPA) to prepare or implement a plan for an identified precinct.

Eligibility criteria

Specific criteria have been established to prioritise the assessment and determination of priority projects.

The project is of state or regional significance and will have a significant short to medium term economic impact, that has:

  • Significant capital expenditure ($50 million in metropolitan Melbourne, $10 million in regional Victoria). This does not apply if the project provides a significant public benefit or is recommended by a responsible authority; and
  • Safeguards existing industry and/or jobs; and/or
  • Creates a significant number of new jobs (construction or ongoing).

The project is “shovel ready” meaning it has investment certainty that can demonstrate:

  • It is ready to commence within twelve months following approval; and
  • The capacity to secure funding for the project, including capitalisation and financial capacity.

The technical and compliance matters are resolved or have a clear resolution pathway:

  • No technical analysis or assessment beyond planning assessment and approval is required; and/or
  • Technical matters can be resolved within three months of project submission.

The views of relevant stakeholders are known:

  • Public advertising/exhibition and/or statutory referral processes completed; and/or
  • Council views are known; and/or
  • Stakeholder and referral authority views are known; and/or
  • Council, referral authority and stakeholders’ views can be sought efficiently; or
  • Views are not warranted.

The project has been or will be unreasonably delayed or impeded:

  • The project has been, or is expected to be, unreasonably delayed in the planning approval process or has undergone unforeseen impediments as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

The project aligns with government policy and priorities; and

The project delivers, or is a stimulus to deliver significant public benefit, that:

  • Provides significant environmental, commercial, recreational, educational, health and essential services to the community, and/or
  • Supports vulnerable communities, regions, industries or sectors.

These criteria will remain in place until 1 March 2022.

New criteria for accelerated assessment and determination

On 1 January 2022 new criteria was introduced to speed up the assessment and determination of projects in identified priority sectors. These criteria operate alongside the previous criteria until 1 March 2022.

The project is “shovel ready” meaning it has investment certainty, that can demonstrate:

  • It is ready to commence within twelve months following approval; and
  • The capacity to secure funding for the project, including capitalisation and financial capacity.

A project must include at least one priority sector that represents no less than 60% of the proposed overall use and development.

The overall use and development of a project may comprise less than 60% if the project is:

  • state funded;
  • a regional housing and/or employment project; or
  • provides greater than 20% affordable housing.
Sector Land usesLocationThreshold/Criteria
Advanced manufacturing and defence Industry
Research centre
Research and development centre
Education centre (if connected to a university)
Office
Regional $10 million CIV
Metropolitan $20 million CIV
Agriculture and Rural industry Agriculture
Aquaculture
Animal Production
Timber Production
Industry
Regional $10 million CIV
Metropolitan $20 million CIV
Digital technologies Data centre
Telecommunications facility
Utility installation
Regional $10 million CIV
Metropolitan $20 million CIV
Education centre Education centre excluding primary or secondary schools Regional $20 million DC
Metropolitan $30 million DC
Health (private hospitals and day procedure centres) Hospital
Medical centre
Regional $10 million CIV
Metropolitan $30 million CIV
Manufacturing Industry Regional $10 million CIV
Metropolitan $30 million CIV
Medical technology Office
Research centre
Research and development centre
Education centre
Industry
Regional $10 million CIV
Metropolitan $20 million CIV
Mining and extractive industry Earth and energy resources industry Extractive industry
Geothermal energy exploration
Geothermal energy extraction
Greenhouse gas sequestration
Greenhouse gas sequestration exploration
Mining
Mineral exploration
State $30 million CIV
Large mixed-use sites within a Metropolitan, Major or Regional Activity Centre   State Land > 1 hectare
Must meet at least 1 eligibility sector threshold
Professional Services Office Regional 5,000 sqm GFA
Metropolitan 10,000 sqm GFA
Retail Retail premises Regional $20 million DC
Metropolitan $100 million DC
Regional housing and employment project   Regional
  • The general locality has less than five years of residential supply or a locality has experienced a significant increase in demand as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Will provide at least 50 lots.
  • The provision of civil infrastructure and services is demonstrated as being readily achievable and supported by servicing agencies.
  • The council’s planning resources do not have capacity to progress the proposal in a timely manner.
  • The land is within a defined ‘settlement boundary’, or where a settlement boundary is not present it is a logical extension of adjacent urban zonings, and is supported by state, regional and local policy.
Visitor economy
Arts and recreation facilities
Motor racing track
Outdoor recreation facility
Residential hotel
Caravan and Camping
Group accommodation
Restaurant
Hotel
Leisure and Recreation
Exhibition Centre
Function Centre
Recreational Boat facility
Winery
Place of assembly
Major sports and recreation facility
Minor sports and recreation facility
Outdoor recreation facility
Film/television media studio (innominate use)
Other innominate uses related to media and creative industries
Regional $10 million DC
Metropolitan $20 million DC
Warehouse & logistics Warehouse
Store
Regional $10 million CIV

Applications

If your project meets the eligibility criteria for accelerated assessment and determination, you can apply via the Development Facilitation Portal.

Submit an application

Development Facilitation portal help

Frequently asked questions

Frequently asked questions - PDF (PDF, 226.6 KB) and (DOCX, 358.4 KB)

Governance

A dedicated facilitation team has been established within DELWP to oversee the program to ensure it is robust and transparent with assistance from Invest Victoria.

The team will facilitate projects for accelerated assessment and determination, which includes:

  • planning permits; and
  • planning scheme amendments.

All projects will be considered under the Planning and Environment Act 1987 including probity and confidentiality and will be subject to the same level of rigorous assessment and opportunity for consultation as per the standard approvals process.

We have redirected resources within DELWP to ensure all projects identified for accelerated assessment are determined quickly by a dedicated team.

Before the Minister for Planning makes a decision, DELWP's relevant statutory planning teams will undertake a detailed merits assessment. Including (where required) notification and/or referral to:

  • the relevant council,
  • referral authorities and stakeholders; and
  • the Priority Projects Standing Advisory Committee.

Assessment process

Select image to enlarge.Project assessment workflow diagram - steps detailed below
  1. Contact Development Facilitation team for pre-application meeting. Preliminary assessment and advice provided to proponent on depth and quality of information required for an application.
  2. Lodge Priority Project application via portal.
  3. Development Facilitation team assesses the project against the eligibility criteria.
  4. If eligibility criteria is met, additional financial information is requested for independent feasibility and probity assessment by Invest Victoria.
  5. Consolidated assessment by the Development Facilitation team and Invest Victoria presented to the Development Facilitation Program Standing Advisory Committee to recommend either an accelerated assessment and determination or reversion to the standard planning process.
  6. Recommended project is referred to the relevant statutory planning team within DELWP for a detailed merits assessment and carriage through the statutory planning process.
  7. Decision is made by the Minister for Planning.

Contact

For all enquiries please contact:

☎  Phone: 1800 950 088
✉  Email: development.facilitation@delwp.vic.gov.au

Page last updated: 07/01/22