Invitation to comment: ACTPLA paper on planning rules for ‘granny flats’, student accommodation (Closing 11 December 2009)

Invitation to comment: ACTPLA paper on planning rules for ‘granny flats’, student accommodation (Closing 11 December 2009)

ANU Modular Student Accommodation (Source: ANU)
ANU Modular Student Accommodation (Source: Australian National University)

ACT Government - ACTPLA LogoPlanning rules for ‘granny flats’, student accommodation and retirement housing are the subject of an issues paper released today by the ACT Planning and Land Authority (ACTPLA).

Chief Planning Executive Neil Savery said the paper—Special residential and nonresidentialuses in residential zones— would be available for public consultation until 11 December.

“This paper, which is part of general review of policy in the Territory Plan, discusses non-standard and non-residential uses in residential zones, and invites comment on possible policy changes,” Mr Savery said.

“It’s looking at planning rules for buildings such as boarding houses, student accommodation and ‘granny flats’.

“For example, as the number of students seeking tertiary education in Canberra grows, specialised student accommodation is likely to become an increasingly common form of institutionalised housing. However, there is currently no policy specific to such developments in the ACT that might assist the development assessment process.”

The paper raises questions such as:

  • What characteristics should ‘granny flats’ have (such as size or parking requirements)?
  • Should the current policy requiring occupants of ‘granny flats’ to be either the recipients of care or carers be revised?
  • How should institutional housing, such as boarding houses and student accommodation, be provided for in the Territory Plan?
  • Should student accommodation and boarding houses have minimum room size and common space requirements?

Mr Savery said the consultation could result in a Territory Plan variation that would be subject to consideration by the Minister and Assembly.

The issues paper can be found on ACTPLA’s website at

Comments on the paper can be emailed to:

Or write to:

Residential Zones ‘Part D’ Policy Review
Development Policy Section
GPO Box 1908

Comments must be received by COB Friday 11 December 2009.

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