Town Planning

Planning regulates the use and development of land in accordance with the needs of the community. Town Planning establishes standards and requirements to be met by both public and private development throughout the community. Effective Planning ensures that development not only conforms to the various laws and requirements but also provides a positive contribution to residential and business communities.

The use and development of land are controlled by the Shire’s Local Planning Scheme. Shire Officers assess a proposed land use or development against the objectives and requirements of the Scheme and can approve or refuse an application. Planning approval is required for, but not limited to:

  • Changes made to the use of land and/or buildings except those permitted by the scheme
  • Single houses outside of residential zones
  • Grouped dwellings
  • Multiple dwellings
  • Additions and alterations
  • Industrial and commercial developments
  • Outbuildings except those permitted by the scheme
  • Signage and other advertisements except those permitted by the scheme
  • Fencing except that permitted by the scheme
  • Development of sites listed on the Shires heritage inventory, including demolition, renovations maintenance and building
  • Refurbishments
  • Altering ground levels beyond that permitted by the scheme
  • Existing structures without council approval
  • Home occupations
  • Signs
  • Demolition of heritage buildings
  • trading in public places
  • outdoor dining
  • non-low-impact telecommunication facilities

You should make an appointment with a planning officer to check whether planning approval is required for your proposal.

Legislative and Administrative Documents 

Legislative and Administrative Documents

In order to provide for the orderly and proper use and development of land and buildings throughout the Shire, the Council is guided by the following legislative and administrative documents:

  • Planning and Development Act 2005;
  • Planning and Development (Local Planning Schemes) Regulations 2015
  • Shire of Wyndham East Kimberley Local Planning Scheme No 9
  • Shire of Wyndham East Kimberley Consolidated Local Laws;
  • Council Development Control Policies;
  • Various other Acts of Parliament and Regulations.

Heritage 

The Shire recognizes the importance of identifying, assessing and managing heritage places within its local government area. Heritage is important for the community and has environmental, economic and social benefits as a resource for present and future generations.

A Municipal Inventory of Heritage Places is available for reference in protecting significant places. The objectives of the heritage list aim to facilitate the conservation of places of heritage value and to ensure that development occurs with due regard to identified heritage values in the interest of the community.  The Municipal Inventory has identified 52 places in the Shire of Wyndham East Kimberley as having heritage significance. For further information please refer to the Local Government Heritage Inventory.

Inclusion of a place in the heritage list does not prohibit the lopment of the place. However, changes made to a place should respect and be sympathetic to the heritage values of the place.  Most types of development and/or maintenance of places listed on the Shire’s heritage inventory require council approval. Those places listed on the State Heritage Office of Western Australia's Register of Heritage Places also require approval from the State Heritage Office.

For further information, please contact the Shire’s Planning Department on (08) 9168 4100.

Home Based Business 

Some small businesses may be operated from home if permitted by the Councils Local Planning Scheme. The consent of the Shire is required prior to operating a home-based business. The planning assessment is undertaken to ensure that the activity remains an ancillary use to the main dwelling. It is also necessary to ensure the scale and type of development is suitable for a residential area. Conditions will accompany a planning approval to ensure that the activity is managed appropriately.

The table below classifies the type of Home Based Business that may operate. Comprehensive definitions can be found in the Local Planning Policy 28 – Home-Based Businesses (including cottage industry).

Types of Home Based Business Definition Examples
Home Business              A business, service or profession carried out in a dwelling by an occupier of the dwelling. Entails clients travelling to the dwelling for appointments. Beautician, Chiropractor, Massage, Internet Trading, Home Day Care
Home Occupation Occupation carried out in a dwelling by an occupier of the dwelling. Entails clients travelling to the dwelling for appointments. Property Valuer, Lawyer, Accountant, Tax Agent, Tutoring, Administration
 Cottage Industry  Trade or light industries, which do not fall within the definition of home occupation or hobby and may be conducted in an outbuilding by an occupier of the property. Arts and Crafts goods, food business, card making and sewing for commercial gain
 Hobby An activity or interest that is undertaken for pleasure or relaxation, often in one’s spare time within their residence. Goods are of a low key nature and does not involve trade other than at a weekend market, fundraising or charitable event. Traders at approved events e.g. markets, Ag Show and Kimberley Moon etc. Does not include trading online or sale of products through other retail outlets
 Home Office Work, other than administration, is undertaken away from the property and only requires a work vehicle to be parked on the premises. Clients must not visit the dwelling for business and the office must only be used by occupiers of the dwelling.  Building trades, Refrigeration and air conditioning, Cleaning services, Security, Landscaping businesses

Please note that Hobby and Home Office businesses are exempt from planning approval.

Home Based Business approvals are reviewed annually and can be revoked at any time if they are negatively affecting the amenity of the neighbourhood. In some cases, a public consultation will be undertaken to ensure that the community are supportive of the application.

Some Home Based Businesses will also need approvals from the Environmental Health Team. For example a beautician, hairdresser, and any preparation of food products.

If you wish to operate a home-based business, please complete a Home Based Business Form, collate the required information and lodge with the Shire. Please note that application fees are provided on the attached form.

For further information, please contact the Shire’s Planning Department on (08) 9168 4100.

Lake Kununurra Foreshore and Aquatic Use Plan 

Lake Kununurra Foreshore and Aquatic Use Plan

Local Planning Strategy

The Local Planning Strategy (the Strategy) is the principal guiding framework for land use and development in the Shire and provides the strategic basis to the Local Planning Scheme.

The essential objective of the Strategy is to provide a strategic vision and land use plan to guide future development across the Shire. The Strategy balances the needs of the natural environment, economic development and community expectations to ensure the long term sustainable development of the Shire.

It provides background information, analysis and strategic direction; whilst acting as a guiding tool in the decision making process and informing future rezoning.

Part 1 of the Strategy provides the key strategic responses to address key issues across the Shire and should be read in conjunction with Part 2, which provides the background information and analysis that informs the strategy.

The Strategy was endorsed by the Western Australian Planning Commission 21 August 2019. 

Planning Approvals

Planning Approval (Development Application) from the Shire is required to commence or carry out development, and for any change in the use of any land. The applicant is required to fill out a Development Application form and collate the required information. Assessment is based on the standards prescribed by the Local Planning Scheme and Planning Policies. 

Development Application fees apply. The Development Application form is available to download here

Local Planning Scheme

The Local Planning Scheme is the primary statutory planning instrument against which land use and development is guided and appropriately controlled. The Local Planning Scheme set out the way land is to be used and developed, classify areas for land use and include provisions to coordinate infrastructure and development within the local government area.

The Planning and Development (Local Planning Scheme) Regulations 2015 came into effect on 19 October 2015, and include Deemed Provisions which automatically apply to all local planning schemes. The Deemed Provisions are principally in regard to administrative functions of a scheme and include provisions in relation to heritage protection, the process for the preparation and approval of local planning policies, structure plans, activity centre plans, and local development plans, the requirement and procedure for dealing with applications for development approval, and enforcement and administration.

Deemed Provisions

The Shire of Wyndham East Kimberley currently operates under Local Planning Scheme No. 9. The local planning scheme aims to:

  • Set aside land for the continued development of the town in areas appropriate for urban development.
  • Limit the development of land considered inappropriate for urban uses because of the adverse effects of inundation and other physical constraints.
  • Zone the balance of the land within the Scheme Area for various purposes described in the Scheme.
  • Provide development policies and controls for the purpose of securing land, maintaining an orderly and properly planned use and development of land within the Scheme Area
  • Set policies for the preservation of sites and places of historic and heritage value.
  • To reserve land for public purposes.
  • Protect and enhance the environmental values and natural resources of the Scheme Area and to promote ecologically sustainable land use and development.

The Local Planning Scheme comprises the Scheme Text and the Scheme Maps. 

Local Planning Scheme No. 9

Local Planning Scheme No. 9

Planning Approval

Planning Approval (Development Application) from the Shire is required to commence or carry out development, and for any change in the use of any land. The applicant is required to fill out a Development Application form and collate the required information. Assessment is based on the standards prescribed by the Local Planning Scheme and Planning Policies. 

Development Application fees apply. The Development Application form is available to download here

Signage

A sign may not be attached or erected on a property within the Shire unless all necessary approvals have been obtained in accordance with the Scheme, Local Law and the provisions of this Policy. Signs that are exempt from the requirement to obtain planning approval are listed in the relevant Planning Schemes.

It is necessary for the Shire to approve signage as it allows for the safe guarding of visual amenity, ensures safety local thoroughfares and footpaths and sets standards which are applied to a range of signs. For example the types of signs that require a planning approval include but are not limited to:

  • Bill posting
  • Free standing signs (A-Frame)
  • Illuminated signs
  • Pennons (Flag signs)
  • Pylon signs
  • Wall panels
  • Veranda Signs

Some signs are exempt under the Local Planning Scheme, for further information please click here to view the scheme.

If you wish to erect a sign, please complete an Application Form, collate the required information and lodge with the Shire. Please note that applicable fees are provided on the attached form.

For further information, please contact the Shire’s Planning Department on (08) 9168 4100.

For information pertaining to road signage click here.

Subdivisions

Subdivision applications are determined by the Western Australian Planning Commission (WAPC). However, Council still has an important role in providing the Commission with recommendations on subdivision proposals, and with the inspection of conditions compliance of the subdivision approval.

A subdivision application form and application guide can be downloaded from the Western Australian Planning Commission’s website. Please direct any enquires regarding subdivision to the WAPC.

Subdivision clearance request

Before your subdivision can be endorsed by the Western Australian Planning Commission, you will need to apply to the Shire for a subdivision clearance for any conditions relating to or imposed by the Shire.

You will need to complete an application and submit the required fee to the Shire of Wyndham East Kimberley. The Shire will inspect the property and ensure the conditions set out by the Western Australian Planning Commission have been met.

For further information, please contact the Shire’s Planning Department on (08) 9168 4100.

Untidy Sites

An untidy property can include any vacant land, residential, or commercial property determined by the Shire as untidy or unsightly. The Shire can, by written notice, require the owner to restore the property, so that it is no longer considered an untidy site.

From a community point of view, tidy gardens and land mean an area looks well cared for making people feel safe in that neighbourhood. If untidy sites are left, they become worse and the area starts to feel neglected and unsafe. Untidy sites are rarely dangerous to public health but they will be an eyesore, which means it is detrimental to the local amenity. An untidy site may consist of:

  1. Fallen fences,
  2. Unsightly storage of personal items
  3. Overgrown gardens.
  4. Dilapidated walls / broken windows/graffiti,
  5. Land with residential, commercial, industrial or demolition waste,
  6. Builders rubble,
  7. Dumped sofas/furniture,
  8. Abandoned vehicles or,
  9. Dumped tyres

Should you wish to make a complaint regarding an untidy site, please click here.

For further information please refer to the Local Planning Scheme or contact the Shire’s Planning Department on(08) 9168 4100.

For further information, please contact the Shire’s Planning Department on (08) 9168 4100.