Regional Planning Approach Supports Economic Transition

The Latrobe Valley is facing a challenging economic transition.

In order to stimulate jobs and grow businesses, the Victorian Government introduced an Economic Growth Zone in the Latrobe Valley in November 2016. A number of financial incentives are being offered to encourage expansion of existing local business and attract new economic activity.

In addition, the State Government wants to reduce regulatory barriers to ensure that investment projects are streamlined and have greater certainty. Understanding that the success of the Economic Growth Zone rests on creating a level playing field across Councils, the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) and the Latrobe City, Baw Baw Shire and Wellington Shire are working together to identify options to streamline their planning systems.

This is where URPS has become involved with the “Planning in the Economic Zone Scoping Study”.  With support from SGS Economics & Planning, we have built upon the previous work of the Red Tape Commissioner to identify issues and solutions through targeted workshops/interviews with local councils, local planning consultants, infrastructure authorities, the Latrobe Valley Authority and key people within DELWP.

Out of this highly consultative program has come 15 key priority options for implementation by DELWP and the Councils.  These will achieve quick wins and lasting reforms that promote a region that is well and truly ‘open for business’.