The draft Housing Strategy is Council’s long-term plan to manage housing growth and change to meet the ongoing needs of the community. It shows locations for new residential development, identifies how new development will be managed and balances the priorities of the community with State and local policy direction, while also seeking to promote better outcomes for our communities and neighbourhoods in line with research and best practice.

The draft Housing Strategy Vision reads:

Banyule will contain housing options for all life stages, preferences, abilities, and incomes, which is sustainable, well designed, and responsive to our unique, leafy green neighbourhoods.

The draft Housing Strategy builds on what we heard during Stage 1 and Stage 2 community engagement in 2022 and 2023 including your priorities, how you live, future needs of the community and options to plan for our housing and neighbourhoods.

The draft Housing Strategy will work together with the draft Neighbourhood Character Strategy to guide new housing development.

Expand the tabs below to see a summary of how the draft Strategy responds to opportunities and constraints in planning for the future of Banyule's housing.

To create housing choice in Banyule, which supports our communities in the long term, we need to cater for a wide range of needs and socio-economic backgrounds to ensure that Banyule is an inclusive and welcoming place to live.

Increasing housing diversity means having choice in typology (apartments, townhouses, units, detached houses) and in different sizes and internal layouts. With Australia and Banyule experiencing an aging population and shrinking household size, we need to make sure new housing matches these needs and preferences. To date, Banyule has been good at delivering single detached houses and higher scale apartment buildings in activity centres. To diversify our housing stock, we need to build more mid-scale housing like units and townhouses.

As housing affordability reaches crisis level in Australia, it is increasingly difficult for residents to find housing that is appropriate for their situation. In situations where housing diversity is insufficient, this can cause detrimental impacts on the economic and social bonds of community, forcing residents to move away from friends and family in search of more appropriate housing. Banyule will investigate a 10% affordable housing contribution in larger residential developments.

To help achieve housing diversity in Banyule, Council will advocate and engage with State government and the development industry to encourage innovation in Banyule. Banyule should be open to developments like build-to-rent, rent-to-buy and co-housing, and increasing the supply of social and affordable housing including key worker housing.

Opportunities and constraints discussion - pages 26 - 30.

Objectives and Actions - pages 48 - 54.

View the full draft Housing Strategy.

To enable more people to have the choice to walk or cycle to their daily needs, housing growth will be directed closer to public transport and services. Higher scale housing (like apartment buildings) will be located in excellent proximity to public transport and services, mid-scale housing (like townhouses and units) will be located in good proximity to public transport and services. The draft Housing Strategy tests actual walkability to services and public transport stops to understand the best locations for higher and mid-scale housing.

Areas which have important biodiversity are protected in the draft Strategy by identifying these areas for lower scale housing. Heritage precincts and neighbourhood character areas which are especially sensitive to housing change have also been identified for lower scale housing.

Opportunities and constraints discussion - page 31-38.

Objectives and Actions - page 48 - 54.

View the full draft Housing Strategy.

Good design is a critical ingredient for creating homes that are comfortable and neighbourhoods that people enjoy being part of. Design is especially important when it comes to higher density development. Much of the resistance to density amongst the community is due to the fact that there are too many examples of it being done badly. When done well, however, higher density development often creates safe, vibrant places that foster social connection, and a greater sense of community. Such transformations can also attract investment and improvements to public services and infrastructure.

As Banyule's population ages, there is also growing demand for housing that accommodates the community’s changing needs. Through the draft Housing Strategy, Banyule seeks to make the development of accessible housing a higher priority.

Housing design also plays a crucial role in responding to the challenges of climate change. While existing national building and construction codes have a role to play in this, higher quality and more cost-effective outcomes are often only achieved when these objectives are considered early in the planning stage. Banyule will seek to provide greater guidance to developers earlier on, ensuring sustainability objectives are a priority from the outset.

We will be preparing guidelines on how to achieve good design, aiming to pull together all the principles that must be included in every development, and give clarity on how to achieve good outcomes in different types of housing (e.g. units, townhouses and apartment buildings). We will also run training sessions, both internally and externally, to increase awareness of good design principles and its benefits.

Opportunities and constraints discussion - page 39 - 44.

Objectives and Actions - page 55-60.

View the full draft Housing Strategy.

Neighbourhood character is what visually differentiates one neighbourhood from another and is the measure of local identity. It encompasses the way a neighbourhood looks and feels.

Banyule’s Neighbourhood Character Strategy (2012) has been reviewed in tandem with the Housing Strategy. The aim of this process is to ensure there is a balance between housing growth and diversity, whilst also protecting valued neighbourhood identity.

Vegetation and landscaping are highly important to the Banyule community when talking about neighbourhood character. While acknowledging that Banyule must provide more housing in some areas, this must be carefully balanced with protection and enhancement of vegetation and biodiversity. The Draft Neighbourhood Character Strategy seeks to support enhancement of the urban canopy cover, in line with Banyule’s Urban Forest Strategy (2023).

Banyule will seek to make our neighbourhood character objectives stronger in the Banyule Planning Scheme, through zone schedules, and application of appropriate overlays to protect special neighbourhood character precincts or vegetation and biodiversity.

Opportunities and constraints discussion - page 45.

Objectives and Actions - pages 61 - 65.

View the full draft Housing Strategy or draft Neighbourhood Character Strategy.

Delivering housing change

Housing change areas

One objective of the draft Housing Strategy is to deliver a diverse range of housing scale, density and typologies to appropriate locations. The change areas will be subject to the better design standards proposed in the draft Housing Strategy.

Residential areas across Banyule have been mapped into four change areas:

In areas where minimal change applies there will be limited housing growth due to significant biodiversity, valued heritage precincts or special neighbourhood character which is sensitive to housing change.

Residential development will be maintained at a maximum of two storeys and will be predominantly single detached housing with minor infill development.

Most of these areas have already been protected by heritage and environmental overlays. However, due to vulnerability to overdevelopment, the areas will be zoned Neighbourhood Residential Zone.

Minimal change will also apply to existing Low Density Residential Zone areas. These areas often have highly valued vegetation, but also provide a diversity of lot sizes in Banyule. There is no change proposed to these areas.

Housing typologies

  • Single detached houses
  • Two dwellings on one lot

In areas where incremental change applies, there is limited access to public transport, activity centres, jobs and open space. New development will provide modest infill opportunities and will contribute to housing diversity. Incremental change areas will support a range of well-designed, low and mid-scale density housing such as single dwellings, dual occupancy, and lower scale townhouse or multi-unit developments up to three storeys. Although the character of these areas will continue to evolve over time, new development will still respect existing characteristics that are relevant to the specific neighbourhood character types.

These areas will be zoned Neighbourhood Residential Zone or General Residential Zone.

Housing typologies

  • Single detached houses
  • Two dwellings on one lot
  • Lower scale townhouses and unit developments

Areas identified with good access to activity centres, high frequency public transport, jobs or open space will be in the increased change area. Increased change areas will provide a greater level of infill development, where units and townhouses will be encouraged, as well as some low scale apartment buildings. These areas may provide greyfield renewal opportunities. The character of these areas is expected to change over time, however new development will still consider the neighbourhood character objectives.

These areas will be zoned General Residential Zone.

Housing typologies

  • Units and townhouses
  • Lower scale apartment buildings

Substantial change areas have excellent accessibility to high frequency public transport or activity centres and will experience the most significant levels of housing change. The objective for these areas is to encourage higher scale housing forms that contribute to Banyule’s housing diversity and choice. Housing typologies will include higher scale density townhouses, apartment buildings, shop-top development and other mixed use developments (e.g. office space with apartments).

In character areas where substantial change applies, new development will contribute to an emerging and evolving future character. While neighbourhood character objectives and garden area requirements will not apply in substantial change areas, Council is currently preparing Medium and Higher Density Landscape and Design Guidelines to ensure new development will be well designed, incorporate landscaping where possible and contribute positively to the public realm through building siting, materials and visual separation.

These locations will be zoned Residential Growth Zone, Mixed Use Zone or Activity Centre Zone.

Housing typologies

  • Units and townhouses
  • Apartment buildings
  • mixed use (e.g. shops on lower ground or offices in the same building)

Property search

Enter your address on the map below to see which of the Strategy’s housing change areas your address falls under.

Map legend

The legend to support the Housing character map

Frequently Asked Questions