FAQ

 

General

What are the Riverstone Scheduled Lands?

UrbanGrowth NSW has been appointed as the Relevant Authority for the Riverstone Scheduled Lands Precinct A (Stages 1 - 3) in the Riverstone Scheduled Lands under the paper subdivisions legislation.

In total, all of the Riverstone Scheduled Lands consist of about 1600 residential lots that are owned by over 320 landowner groups. The Minister for Planning is yet to determine whether to proceed with a development plan for the lots outside the boundaries of Precinct A (Stages 1-3).

A map showing the extent of the Riverstone Scheduled Lands can be obtained from NSW Department of Planning and Environment. See more at: http://www.urbangrowth.nsw.gov.au/projects/riverstone-scheduled-lands/faqs/#category-24

 

What is Precinct A (Stages 1 – 3)?

Precinct A (Stages 1-3) is the first section of land that has been identified for development in the Riverstone Scheduled Lands. It is an area bounded by Junction Road to the east, Crown Road to the south and Edmund Street to the west in Riverstone.

What is happening with the remainder of the Riverstone Scheduled Lands, ie land that is not located in Precinct A (Stages 1 – 3)?

Lots outside Precinct A (Stages 1 – 3) in the Riverstone Scheduled Lands are not covered by the Riverstone Scheduled Lands Development Plan Precinct A (Stages 1-3) 2016.

This land has been rezoned to allow for subdivision but cannot be developed at present as it is not serviced with the infrastructure required for development, such as roads, drainage, water, sewer and electricity.

The Minister for Planning is yet to determine whether to proceed with a development plan for these lots.

Information about Blacktown City Council’s developer requirements can be obtained from Blacktown City Council 

Further information about lots included in Riverstone Scheduled Lands, but falling outside Riverstone Scheduled Lands Precinct A (Stages 1-3), can be obtained from NSW Department of Planning and Environment 

What is UrbanGrowth NSW’s role in the Riverstone Scheduled Lands?

UrbanGrowth NSW has been appointed as the Relevant Authority for Precinct A (Stages 1 - 3) in the Riverstone Scheduled Lands under the ‘paper subdivisions’ amendments to the EP&A Act.

UrbanGrowth NSW has prepared the Development Plan for Precinct A (Stages 1-3) on behalf of landowners. UrbanGrowth NSW is responsible for the co-ordination and delivery of the Development Plan.

Does UrbanGrowth NSW own any of the Riverstone Scheduled Lands?

No. UrbanGrowth NSW is not a landowner in the Riverstone Scheduled Lands Precinct A (Stages 1-3).

Who owns the land in the Riverstone Scheduled Lands?

The majority of the development lots are held by private landowners. There are around 1,900 lots held by over 320 landowner groups across the Riverstone Scheduled Lands, with around 280 lots and 50 landowner groups within Precinct A (Stages 1-3).

Blacktown City Council and the State Government also own land, mostly zoned for conservation.

What is the Riverstone Scheduled Lands Development Plan Precinct A (Stages1-3)?

The Riverstone Scheduled Lands Development Plan Precinct A (Stages 1-3) 2016 under the Environmental Planning & Assessment Act  1979 was created by UrbanGrowth NSW to allow for the future development of the Riverstone Scheduled Lands Precinct A (Stages 1 - 3).

The Plan outlines how:

  • infrastructure will be delivered 
  • land will be subdivided
  • costs of developing land will be recouped through contributions from landowners. 

Next steps in the subdivision process

Can I build on my block as it is?

No. The Minister for Planning has rezoned the Riverstone Scheduled Lands to allow urban development. However, Blacktown City Council will only allow development to proceed once sewer, water and electricity infrastructure is in place. Find out more about Blacktown City Council’s developer requirements.

What infrastructure is needed to develop the Riverstone Scheduled Lands?

The Riverstone Scheduled Lands area requires new and upgraded roads, water, sewer, and electrical services. The new development area will also need to be supported by new schools, public transport and community services.

Once the subdivisions are complete, will my land be ready to build on?

Once the subdivision works are complete and the subdivision is registered, landowners will receive new certificates of title for their lot(s). Once new Certificates of Title are available, landowners will be able to sell their land or lodge Development Applications with Blacktown City Council. Find out more about Blacktown City Council’s developer requirements.

What will happen to the trees on the Riverstone Scheduled Lands Precinct A (Stages 1-3)?

Some trees will be removed as part of the subdivision work on site. 

How long will it take for Blacktown City Council to approve the Development Application for the new Subdivision?

We expect this will take several months. We will keep landowners informed about the progress of the Development Application for the new Subdivision once it is submitted to Blacktown City Council. 

What happens once the Development Application for the new Subdivision is approved by Blacktown City Council?

After the Development Application for the new Subdivision is approved, we will issue tenders to appoint a suitable construction contractor to complete the construction works required for the development of each stage. 

When will subdivision works begin?

UrbanGrowth NSW has begun the process of seeking development approvals and construction certificates from Blacktown City Council and making arrangements for the tendering and construction of the subdivision works.

A development application was lodged with Blacktown City Council and subdivision works for Stage 1 are expected to begin in the second half of 2017 (indicative timing and subject to development approvals). 

Costs and funding

What do I pay for as a landowner?

Landowners in Precinct A (Stages 1 - 3) are required to pay for the cost of Subdivision Works, which include the cost of all new services (sewer, water, electricity), roads, drainage and remediation of contamination (building rubbish, asbestos, etc) and demolition. Landowners are also  responsible for government fees and charges related to developing their land.

Some properties may require remediation of contamination (such as asbestos), or demolition of a building. Landowners are required to pay for the cost of remediation and demolition. If landowners choose to independently manage these works, UrbanGrowth NSW request that landowners use appropriately licenced contractors. 

What is a Voluntary Contributions Agreement?

Landowners in the Riverstone Scheduled Lands Precinct A (Stages 1 - 3) must make a contribution towards the cost of the subdivision works and the Riverstone Scheduled Lands Development Plan Precinct A (Stages 1-3) 2016 under the Environmental Planning & Assessment Act  1979. The proportion of each landowner’s contribution is calculated and described in the Riverstone Scheduled Lands Development Plan Precinct A (Stages 1-3) 2016.

The cost of the subdivision works includes the cost of all new services (sewer, water, electricity), roads, drainage and remediation of any contamination (building rubbish, asbestos, etc) and demolition.  Landowners are also responsible for Development Plan costs, which include government fees and charges.  Details of these costs are provided in the Development Plan.

A Voluntary Contributions Agreement (VCA) is a contract between landowners in Precinct A (Stages 1-3) and UrbanGrowth NSW for the development of their land, including amount payable and options to fund the development. 

How can I pay for the costs associated with development?

There are two options for funding the costs associated with development in Precinct A (Stages 1-3). They are:

  • Monetary Contribution: Money is paid to UrbanGrowth NSW prior to work commencing in your stage, or
  • Land Trade: A portion of your land is traded with UrbanGrowth NSW to cover the costs associated with development.

If a landowner has not entered into a Voluntary Contributions Agreement (VCA) with UrbanGrowth NSW by the end of February 2017, either because they choose not to or are unable to, under the requirements of the Environmental Planning & Assessment Act 1979, compulsory land acquisition powers will be triggered.  The trigger of acquisitions provides certainty for all landowners, as it allows the Development Plan process to go ahead in the manner that the majority of landowners voted for in the landowner ballot in early 2016. 

How does the Monetary Contribution option work?

An upfront payment by the landowner in Precinct A (Stages 1 - 3) is made to UrbanGrowth NSW and held in a dedicated account for the subdivision works and Development Plan costs.

Development costs for your land will be withdrawn from the account by UrbanGrowth NSW during the development of your land.

New Certificates of Title are created and given to the landowner once the subdivision works are complete and the Deposited Plan of the subdivision is registered with NSW Land Property Information (the NSW land titles office).

Surplus funds remaining in the account after costs have been met at the completion of the Development Plan will be returned to the landowner.

The developable area of your land always remains in your ownership.

If I pay by Monetary Contribution, do I have to pay for it all upfront or can I pay in instalments?

Landowners in Precinct A (Stages 1 - 3) who choose to pay for the cost of development via a Monetary Contribution are required to pay upfront before the commencement of their stage.

Details of when payments are due will be sent to landowners in early 2017. 

If I am funding through Monetary Contribution, how much notice will I have to pay?

Landowners will be required to make their payment 90 days before the commencement of subdivision works for their stage. 

How does the Land Trade option work?

Landowners in Precinct A (Stages 1 - 3) have the option to pay for their share of costs of development with part of their land - this is called land trading. This means trading some of your land to pay for subdivision works and Development Plan costs.

Landowners have a choice about which lots they would like to trade and which lots they would like to keep.

UrbanGrowth NSW will complete the works and sell the traded lot(s) on the market.  UrbanGrowth NSW will recoup its costs and return any surplus funds to the landowner as soon as reasonably practicable after the completion of the Development Plan.

What are the government development fees and levies I will have to pay?

There are application fees to council for the development approvals and two types of development fees and charges that are payable on all new developments across NSW. These are the Special Infrastructure Contribution and Section 94 fees.

The Special infrastructure Contribution: the whole of the North West Growth Centre, within which the Riverstone Scheduled Lands is located, is subject to an infrastructure levy administered by the NSW Department of Planning and Environment. This levy contributes towards the cost of biodiversity certification and land for State Government services such as schools, transport and emergency services to be provided in the area.

Section 94 fees: a Section 94 payment are levied by Blacktown City Council in line with its Section 94 Contributions Plan. This is normal practice for new development areas and will cover your share of the cost of local facilities and services such as drainage areas, parks and community facilities.

Why do I have to pay for infrastructure?

It is standard practice for developers in NSW to pay for the cost of the roads, water, sewer and other services needed for developing their land.

Why do I have to pay UrbanGrowth NSW development management fees?

Development management fees are one of the costs incurred in developing land. These costs apply as they would for any private developer in NSW.

What will happen if I choose not to enter into a Voluntary Contributions Agreement (VCA) with UrbanGrowth NSW?

If a landowner has not entered into a Voluntary Contributions Agreement (VCA) with UrbanGrowth NSW by the end of February 2017, UrbanGrowth NSW will move to acquire the land under the Land Acquisition (Just Terms Compensation) Act outlined in the Development Plan.

Paper subdivisions legislation

What are paper subdivisions?

These are lots that are subdivided on paper, but have not been developed due to their irregular subdivision patterns, highly fragmented ownership and/or a lack of appropriate zoning and servicing.

In some cases, the subdivisions date back to the 1800s and can be as small as 200m² in area and less than 10m in width – sometimes with no land between lots for ‘common’ areas such as roads and footpaths.

More information about paper subdivisions can be viewed on Department of Planning and Environment’s website - http://www.planning.nsw.gov.au/Policy-and-Legislation/Buildings/Paper-Subdivisions

What is the paper subdivisions legislation?

The legislation is designed to help landowners in paper subdivision areas like the Riverstone Scheduled Lands to coordinate the delivery of services required to unlock their land for development Under Schedule 5 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act, the Minister for Planning may designate in a Subdivision Order any of the following authorities as the relevant authority for the subdivision of land: the corporation (meaning the corporation sole established under section 8 of the EP&A Act), or a local council, or UrbanGrowth NSW, or a development corporation established under the Growth Centres (Development Corporations) Act 1974 NSW, or any other body prescribed by the Regulation. Under the legislation, the designated relevant authority (such as UrbanGrowth NSW) can propose a development plan based on current planning controls. 

Subdivision Order

What is a Subdivision Order?

A Subdivision Order is made by the Minister for Planning and Environment and enables the relevant authority (a council, UrbanGrowth NSW or other specified body) to carry out the provisions of a Development Plan which may include subdivision works, acquisition of land by agreement or compulsory process and the requirement to pay development contributions.

In a consent ballot held in March 2016 the majority of landowners in the Riverstone Scheduled Lands Precinct A (Stages 1-3) voted in favour of the proposed Development Plan for their lots.

A Subdivision Order was issued by the Minister for Planning and Environment in November 2016, directing UrbanGrowth NSW, as the relevant authority, to proceed with the development of Precinct A (Stages 1-3) as per the Development Plan.

What happens now that the Subdivision Order has been issued?

A Subdivision Order is made by the Minister for Planning and Environment and enables the relevant authority (a council, UrbanGrowth NSW or other specified body) to carry out the provisions of a Development Plan which may include subdivision works, acquisition of land by agreement or compulsory process and the requirement to pay development contributions.

In a consent ballot held in March 2016 the majority of landowners in the Riverstone Scheduled Lands Precinct A (Stages 1-3) voted in favour of the proposed Development Plan for their lots.

A Subdivision Order was issued by the Minister for Planning and Environment in November 2016, directing UrbanGrowth NSW, as the relevant authority, to proceed with the development of Precinct A (Stages 1-3) as per the Development Plan.

The ballot process

What is the consent ballot?

Under Schedule 5 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act and the supporting provisions in the Regulation, landowners must vote on whether the Riverstone Scheduled Lands Development Plan Precinct A (Stages 1-3) 2016 under the Environmental Protection Act 1979 will proceed.

A minimum of 60% of landowners, owning at least 60% of the land area, need to vote in favour of the Riverstone Scheduled Lands Development Plan Precinct A (Stages 1-3) 2016, following which the Minister for Planning  may issue a Subdivision Order for the Riverstone Scheduled Lands Development Plan Precinct A (Stages 1-3) 2016 to proceed.

What was the ballot result?

The ballot in March 2016 resulted in 80% of landowners holding 88.5% of the land area voting in favour of the Development Plan. This result meets the majority required for the Minister for Planning and Environment to make the Subdivision Order allowing UrbanGrowth NSW to proceed with the Development Plan.

View the Riverstone Scheduled Lands Precinct A (Stages 1-3) 2016 Consent Ballot Results Statement

View the Riverstone Scheduled Lands Precinct A (Stages 1-3) 2016 Consent Ballot Scrutineer’s Report