Wimmera Southern Mallee Regional Growth Plan
The Wimmera Southern Mallee Regional Growth Plan is one of eight regional growth plans being prepared across Victoria. It will provide a broad direction for regional land use and development as well as detailed planning frameworks for key regional centres.
On this page:
- About the region
- About regional growth plans
- Have your say on the draft Regional Growth Plan
- Background and issues
- Project timeline
- Managing the project
- Contact us
The Wimmera Southern Mallee region is located in the west of Victoria, along the main rail and road corridor linking Melbourne and Adelaide.
Horsham is the regional centre, with other key towns including Stawell, Warracknabeal, Edenhope and Nhill.
The region’s economy has traditionally been based on agriculture, in particular cropping, but is increasingly diversifying into other activities.
A number of significant natural assets also exist in the region including the Grampians, Little Desert and Big Desert National Parks, Lake Hindmarsh, the Wimmera River and wetlands.
The Wimmera Southern Mallee Regional Growth Plan covers the municipalities of West Wimmera, Horsham, Yarriambiack, Northern Grampians and Hindmarsh.
Buloke Shire is a partner on the project steering committee, but is included within the neighbouring Loddon Mallee North Regional Growth Plan area.
The regional growth plans will provide the means to implement the strategic land use and infrastructure directions that are set out in the Regional Strategic Plans that were prepared 2010.
Regional growth plans are being prepared in a partnership between local government and state agencies and authorities.
The regional growth plans will:
- identify important economic, environmental, social and cultural resources to be preserved, maintained or developed
- provide direction for accommodating growth and change including residential, employment, industrial, commercial, agricultural and other rural activities
- show broadly which areas of land can accommodate growth and which are to be maintained, including consideration of the infrastructure needed to support growth or change
- help councils by streamlining planning policy as well as potentially reducing the amount of strategic work councils have to do.
Draft Regional Growth Plan
The draft Wimmera Southern Mallee Regional Growth Plan was available for comment during December 2012.
The draft plan builds on the strategic directions that were established during a consultation period in March-April 2012. Tell us what you like about the draft plan and how it could be improved.
Download a copy of the draft plan:
NOTE: This version of the report is a large file and may take time to download. The report is also available to download in smaller sections below:
- Cover, Table of Contents, Executive Summary (PDF - 941 KB)
- Part A - Introduction (PDF - 853 KB)
- Part B - Regional Overview (PDF - 1.2 MB)
- Part C - Towards the Regional Growth Plan: Sections 10.1 - 10.2 (PDF - 2.1 MB)
- Part C - Towards the Regional Growth Plan: Sections 10.3 - 12.6 (PDF - 1.9 MB)
- Part C - Towards the Regional Growth Plan: Sections 12.7 - 13.3 (PDF - 2.0 MB)
- Part C - Towards the Regional Growth Plan: Section 13.4 (PDF - 1.2 MB)
- Parts D and E - Draft Regional Growth Plan and Delivering Regional Growth (PDF - 2.0 MB)
Read a background report to the draft Regional Growth Plan:
The background report is available in smaller sections below:
- Background Report - Sections 1 -3: Cover, Table of Contents, Executive Summary, Snapshot, Introduction (PDF - 410 KB)
- Background Report - Sections 4.1 - 4.5: Economic prosperity (PDF - 2.1 MB)
- Background Report - Sections 4.5 - 4.7: Economic prosperity (1.6 MB)
- Background Report - Section 5: Population and settlement (PDF - 1.2 MB)
- Background Report - Section 6: Planning for communities (PDF - 1.2 MB)
- Background Report - Section 7: Transport and infrastructure (PDF - 995 KB)
- Background Report - Section 8.1: Environment (PDF - 2.3 MB)
- Background Report - Sections 8.2 - 8.4: Environment (PDF - 2.0 MB)
- Background Report - Sections 9 - 10: Cross regional issues, References (PDF - 54 KB)
The background report is available in accessible Word format below:
- Background Report - Cover, Table of Contents, Sections 1 - 4 (DOC - 2.2 MB)
- Background Report - Section 5 (DOC - 2.2 MB)
- Background Report - Section 6 (DOC - 1.3 MB)
- Background Report - Section 7 (DOC - 1.2 MB)
- Background Report - Sections 8 - 10 (DOC - 2.1 MB)
A vision for the region to 2041
The Wimmera Southern Mallee is a prosperous region which uses its natural advantages of a healthy environment, extensive spaces and range of urban and rural lifestyle opportunities to attract more residents, businesses and visitors.
Expanded primary production remains an important focus of the region, but a more diverse and innovative economy including new agricultural commodities, industry, tourism, research and education means the community can adapt to changing economic and environmental conditions.
Natural assets and ecological values are protected and enhanced by sustainable communities and industry.
People can choose from a variety of places to live throughout the region to suit different lifestyles, with a network of small and large towns providing hubs to access community activity and services.
Good connectivity is provided within and beyond the region, this assists in providing equitable access to facilities and improves the competitive advantage of living and working in the Wimmera Southern Mallee.
The draft Plan is underpinned by principles to achieve the vision
- Growth should be encouraged throughout the region to create a network of integrated and prosperous settlements.
- Key centres should be a focus to manage population change and access to services.
- Ecological health and rural landscapes should be enhanced.
- Key agricultural resources should be protected, productivity maintained, and the development of industry supported.
- The region's assets should be used to facilitate the diversification of the economy and ensure a resilient community.
- Planning should support adaptation to changes in climate.
- The development of distinct settlements should be supported to create healthy, attractive and liveable communities.
- Opportunities for growth should be identified to facilitate appropriate local development.
- Infrastructure required to support growth should be identified.
The plan identifies a number of key drivers that will affect how the region develops and how land is used. The themes covered in the plan include:
- Economic development
- Environment and heritage
- Urban settlement
- Regional infrastructure
The project team is considering all submissions in the preparation of the final draft Wimmera Southern Mallee Regional Growth Plan.
The project team will also meet with the Project Steering Committee and Technical Working Group prior to preparing the final plan for endorsement in mid 2013.
Background and issues
Wimmera Southern Mallee Regional Strategic Plan
The regional strategic plan, the Wimmera Southern Mallee Regional Plan, was developed in 2010. The plan sets out the strategic land use and infrastructure directions for the Wimmera Southern Mallee. It was prepared in the region, and represents regional stakeholders' aspirations and agenda for regional development and long term strategic planning.
View the Wimmera Southern Mallee Regional Strategic Plan - June 2010 on the Regional Development Victoria website.
- a competitive and innovative economy
- a healthy and resilient environment
- community well being
It also establishes seven directions about regional settlement planning:
- support a network of integrated and prosperous regional settlements
- provide for the enhancement of environmental health and productivity within rural and hinterland landscapes
- maintain and enhance regional Victoria’s competitive advantage
- respond to the impacts of climate change and natural hazards and promote community safety
- support the growth and development of distinct and diverse regional settlements
- promote liveable regional settlements and healthy communities
- encourage regional integration and implementation of policy and regional strategies.
The regional growth plan provides an opportunity to refine, test and implement these directions through Victoria's planning system.
Regional planning issues for the Wimmera Southern Mallee
As part of the initial phases of preparing the Regional Growth Plan a draft issues paper was prepared in consultation with state and local government partners and other key agencies.
The draft issues paper sets out background information about the settlement, infrastructure, community, economic and environmental characteristics of the region.
It references existing work and policy that has been undertaken to plan for the region. This material has been used to help identify what are the important issues that will drive the future policy directions of the Wimmera Southern Mallee Regional Growth Plan.
Download a copy of the draft issues paper:
- Wimmera Southern Mallee Draft Issues Paper - Part 1 (DOC - 2.4 MB)
- Wimmera Southern Mallee Draft Issues Paper - Part 2 (DOC - 1.7 MB)
- Wimmera Southern Mallee Draft Issues Paper - Part 3 (DOC - 2.2 MB)
The indicative timeline and development phases of the project are shown below:
|1. Project establishment
|2. Data review
|3. Prepare Issues Papers
|4. Integrated issues analysis
|5. Prepare Draft Regional Growth Plan
|6. Draft Regional Growth Plan consultation
|7. Final Draft Regional Growth Plan
|8. Final endorsement
The Wimmera Southern Mallee Regional Growth Plan is being prepared in a partnership between local government and state agencies and authorities.
A project steering committee provides overall strategic direction for the development of the plan.
A technical working group includes expertise from state and local government as well as key agencies such as water authorities and catchment management authorities.
Coordination of the project is being provided by the Department of Planning and Community Development’s Grampians Region office.
Project Steering Committee members include:
- Department of Planning and Community Development
- Department of Primary Industries
- Department of Sustainability and Environment
- Department of Transport / VicRoads
- Horsham Rural City Council
- West Wimmera Shire Council
- Yarriambiack Shire Council
- Hindmarsh Shire Council
- Buloke Shire Council
Catchment Management Authorities:
For news about the project please read the project update:
- Stakeholder Project Update - February 2012 (PDF - 91 KB) or (DOC - 1.0 MB)
- Stakeholder Project Update - July 2012 (PDF - 153 KB) or (DOC - 397 KB)
Personal information provided by you in your comments or submissions is collected by the Department of Planning and Community Development (DPCD) for the purposes of recording public comment relating to the drafting of the Regional Growth Plan (RGP).
Collection of this information is required to allow members of the community to be involved in the planning process. Personal information will not be used to contact you in any other activities such as making draft documentation available for feedback and other community consultations etc., unless you have indicated that you wish to receive information when you submit your feedback to us.
You can request access to your personal information by contacting DPCD's Ballarat Office. If informal access cannot be given to you by that section, contact DPCD's Freedom of Information unit by phone (03) 9208 3112 or by email firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you would like any further information, or would like to be included in future community engagement about the Wimmera Southern Mallee Regional Growth Plan, please contact our project team on telephone: (03) 5327 2847 or by email WimmeraSouthernMallee.RGP@dpcd.vic.gov.au