Urban Insights: Your wrap-up of the latest industry news

22 Jan 2021

, News

In this e-newsletter
– New suburb for Melbourne’s south east
– High-risk cladding banned  
– Have your say: Improving electricity connections at new properties
– COVID update
– Connect with the community housing sector
– Geothermal energy innovation

Advocacy win. 

New suburb for Melbourne’s south east.

The Andrews Government is ensuring the right infrastructure is in place to support a new community in Melbourne’s south east – including thousands of new homes, four new schools and 22 MCG’s worth of parkland.

Pakenham East will feature 7,200 new homes, creating 1,300 new jobs and adding more than $1 billion to the Victorian economy over the coming years.

The new suburb will be guided by the recently approved Pakenham East Precinct Structure Plan.

This is the first plan to be approved under Government’s new VPA Fast Track program to provide certainty for communities about future development, a pipeline of development for industry, future jobs and homes for Victorians, and will unlock $17 billion for Victoria’s economy.

Read more.

Certain cladding products banned from 1 Feb.

The Minister for Planning has declared that High-Risk External Wall Cladding Products are prohibited from being used on any building work in connection with buildings of Type A or Type B construction in Victoria. 

Section 192B of the Building Act 1993 (VIC) now gives the Minister power to ban cladding products considered high-risk.  

The declaration was Gazetted on 13 January 2021 and comes into force 1 February 2021 and does not apply retrospectively. 

Go to the Government Gazette.

The latest on COVID.

  • Information about 2021 coronavirus land tax relief, including eligibility and how to apply, is now available on the SRO website. Applications for 2021 relief close on 30 June 2021. Applications for 2020 relief close 31 March 2021.
  • Up to 50 per cent of private sector workers are now permitted to return to the office, with no requirement to wear a mask indoors, while the public sector is permitted to return at 25 per cent. Businesses with fewer than 40 staff can have 10 staff on-site subject to density quotients.
  • Mask rules have been relaxed, removing the requirement to wear masks indoors except for in high-risk settings (domestic flights, airports, hospitals, public transport, commercial passenger vehicles, supermarkets and other large indoor retail locations, including shopping centres and where physical distancing is not possible).
  • People entering Victoria from anywhere in Australia must apply for a permit. People in ‘red zones’ cannot currently enter the state without an exemption. Click here for more information on the permit system.

Stay up-to-date on UDIA Victoria’s COVID-19 Industry Hub.

Big Housing opportunities: Connecting with the community housing sector.

This year brings significant opportunities for developers to partner with community housing organisations to deliver 4,200 social housing properties over the next four years through the Victorian Government’s $5.3 billion Big Housing Build.

For many developers, this will be their first interaction with the community housing industry, which is why UDIA Victoria has partnered with the Community Housing Industry Association (CHIA) to deliver a special course explaining the sector’s business model, what housing organisations will be seeking in development partners, and providing answers your questions.

Save the date! Community Housing Explained Course 
Tuesday 25th March
10am – 12:30pm (2 hour course with break)
Registrations open soon. 

In the meantime, CHIA Vic has developed information and fact sheets for you to start building your understanding. 

Read more.

Innovation in greenfield housing development: Geothermal energy.

Well done to UDIA Victoria member and development company Crystal Group, who have embarked on crucial first steps towards introducing geothermal heating and cooling to Mitchell Shire.

Read more.

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