Victoria’s Big Housing Build program is an unprecedented $5.3 billion investment in social and affordable housing, and will deliver over 12,000 new dwellings, including 9,300 new social housing dwellings, replacing 1,100 existing dwellings. The investment, delivered throughout metropolitan and regional Victoria, will boost total social housing supply by 10 per cent.

Amendments VC187 and VC190, gazetted on 1 December 2020, introduced changes to the Victoria Planning Provisions and all planning schemes to streamline the planning process and support economic recovery through the creation of thousands of jobs, and the rapid delivery of much needed social and affordable housing.

Amendment VC187

Introduces a new particular provision, Housing by or on behalf of the Director of Housing at clause 53.20 to streamline the planning permit process for housing projects by or on behalf of the Director of Housing.

The Minister for Energy, Environment, and Climate Change is the responsible authority for assessing the development of 10 or more dwellings and apartments. Proposals for less than 10 dwellings will be assessed by the local council.

View clause 53.20

View Amendment VC187

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Amendment VC190

Introduces a new particular provision for projects delivered through Victoria’s Big Housing Build at clause 52.20. The Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change is the responsible  authority for assessing all proposals made under this new provision.

The prompt implementation of the provisions will support the creation of thousands of jobs and boost Victoria’s economic recovery from the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

View clause 52.20

View Amendment VC190

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More information

The following information provides greater detail about the amendments and the Big Housing Build.

What is Amendment VC187?

Introduces a new particular provision, Housing by or on behalf of the Director of Housing at clause 53.20 to streamline the planning permit process for housing projects by or on behalf of the Director of Housing.  It also makes the Minister for Energy, Environment, and Climate Change responsible for assessing the development of 10 or more dwellings and apartments.

What does it deliver?

The amendment will have beneficial social effects by supporting Government initiatives to substantially increase investment in, and development of housing through:

  • the $500 million investment to build and upgrade community and public housing as part of the Building Works stimulus package
  • the Building New Homes to Fight Homelessness “1000 homes” initiative which will help Victorians escape family violence, homelessness and life on the streets by building 1,000 new homes
  • the $185 million Public Housing Renewal Program to redevelop public housing estates
  • other new homes delivered by Homes Victoria and community housing providers.

Why is it needed?

There is a pressing need to dramatically increase the supply of social and affordable housing in Victoria, with 48,000 households on the Victorian Housing Register.   There is also a need to ensure housing is appropriate by replacing deteriorating housing stock and ensuring that homes meet the needs of those who need them.

How do the changes affect local governments and their current decision-making powers in relation to social and affordable housing in their area?

Councils remain responsible for the assessment of less than 10 dwellings

While these applications are exempt from the usual notice and appeal provisions, key siting and amenity requirements must be met to protect neighbours

The State Government is the responsible authority for an application to construct or extend 10 or more dwellings on a lot and for any apartment development. The government will liaise with local government on these larger applications.

Who approved the amendment?

Minister D’Ambrosio has approved the amendment.  This is necessary to avoid any conflict of interest that arises with the Minister for Planning assessing applications made on behalf of the Minister for Housing, as the Minister for Planning and Minister for Housig are currently the same person.

When will the changes be delivered?


The changes are effective from the day the Notice of Approval appears in the Government Gazette allowing immediate facilitation of currently funded projects.

Will this provision support a specific group of Victorians?

The amendment supports the provision of housing for a range of social and affordable housing needs including families, the elderly and homeless people. For example, the amendment will support quicker delivery of the ‘1000 homes’ initiative to help Victorians in need of safe and secure housing by facilitating the construction of 1,000 new homes for people on the Victorian Housing Register (the public housing waitlist).

What does Amendment VC190 do?

  • The amendment makes changes to the Victoria Planning Provisions and all planning schemes by introducing a new particular provision, Victoria’s Big Housing Build at clause 52.20. The Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change will determine the proposed projects (clause 72.01).
  • Clause 52.20 removes the need for a planning permit or scheme amendment with a streamlined development approval process where the Minister approves the project and plans. It:
    • requires a project to be funded under Victoria’s Big Housing Build and supported by the Director of Housing
    • applies to any planning zone except for the industrial, rural or Port Zone
    • exempts the requirement to notify surrounding properties and review of decisions, however consultation with the public and the municipal council is required
    • requires consideration of normally applicable issues such as heritage, design and environmental issues
    • includes requirements and development standards (based on ResCode and Better Apartments) to support faster decision making, certainty and the amenity of adjoining neighbours
    • does not exempt certain scheme requirements such as bushfire management, environmental audits and environment effects statements.

Do projects require consultation?

Yes. The provision includes a requirement for the applicant to consult with council and the public prior to making an application.

Who approved Amendment VC190?

Minister D’Ambrosio has approved the amendment.  This is necessary to avoid any conflict of interest that arises with the Minister for Planning assessing applications made on behalf of the Minister for Housing, as the Minister for Planning and Minister for Housing are currently the same person.

Is the amendment a temporary measure, or permanent?

The provision will no longer apply once the Victoria’s Big Housing Build program is complete.

When will the changes be delivered?

The changes are effective from the day the Notice of Approval appears in the Government Gazette allowing immediate facilitation of currently funded projects.

Page last updated: 02/12/20