Inclusionary housing

Inclusionary housing to increase the supply of social and affordable housing

Inclusionary Housing Pilot program

The Victorian Government is committed to better meeting the housing needs of Victorians by utilising surplus government land with good access to jobs and transport for the purposes of much need housing.

As part of the Government’s housing strategy, Homes for Victorians, the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) is undertaking an Inclusionary Housing Pilot (IHP) on six surplus government land parcels. The IHP will deliver up to 100 new much needed social housing homes and introduce affordable housing opportunities across the six sites.

The land will be developed by the private sector in partnership with community housing providers. This will be done in close consultation with government departments and agencies as well as with the relevant local councils. It is a new and innovative way to think about social housing provision.

Surplus government land is often well located and, where suitable, land that is no longer required for government use can be put to the market for housing. To make sure Victorian people in need are not being left behind, the Government expects a proportion of social housing to be delivered on each IHP site.

The six sites included in the IHP have all been declared surplus to government needs, with no department, agency or local council wishing to take them on. For the purposed of the pilot, the IHP sites have been split into Tranche One and Tranche Two.

Tranche One

40 Mount View Road, Boronia (PDF 216.1 KB)
2-16 Nicholas Street, Broadmeadows (PDF 255.3 KB)
87-103 Manningham Street, Parkville (PDF 270.2 KB)
30 Jarrah and 41 Pearce Street, Wodonga (PDF 224.7 KB)

Tranche Two

30-40 Athol Road, Noble Park
16-20 Dumbarton Street, Reservoir

In Tranche One the first four sites will be presented to the market having already undergone a Government Land Standing Advisory Committee (Advisory Committee) process and with the planning controls in place. In Tranche Two, DELWP, in partnership with the successful bidder, will have the preferred design reviewed by the Advisory Committee at the same time as consideration of the proposed planning controls.

As a Pilot, this dual approach is part of how DELWP will test and better understand the different ways social and affordable housing can be undertaken to achieve desirable outcomes. These outcomes consist of a variety of things, including but not limited to, planning efficiency, good urban design, the attainment of meaningful social capital through consultation, and the provision of social housing.

Facilitated through the Government Land Planning Service, the focus will be to deliver planning certainty for development proponents and the community. This will be achieved through the rezoning of land and by establishing development potential through Development Plan Overlays.

Development proponents wishing to partner with government to deliver new social housing will have their proposals evaluated to make sure they deliver best value for money, and the best options for social housing.

Each site will have planning controls prepared and a panel process undertaken to consider the appropriate rezoning. This will include considering whether any part of the site should be retained for open space – either purchased by local council or delivered through open space contributions.

The six sites of the IHP are expected to be put to the market by the end of 2018. Following the completion and evaluation of the IHP, a further pipeline of projects will be identified by government departments and agencies, with potential for appropriate models to be adopted at a local level.

Inclusionary housing in major developments

$7 million

over four years - new initiative since 2016-17 Budget Update

The responsibility for making sure we have more affordable homes should also belong to developers.

It’s why there is a growing appetite from local councils to apply affordable housing provisions as part of both rezoning, and permit applications for major developments.

Already a number of developers are offering packages that include the delivery of affordable housing, in exchange for rezoning approval or a permit uplift condition through a value capture style agreement. The partnership could take one of a number of forms:

  • transfer of ownership of an agreed number of dwellings to a Community Housing Association or the Director of Housing for use as social housing
  • the sale of dwellings to a Community Housing Association at an agreed discounted price to be used in perpetuity as affordable rental
  • offering units for sale to first home buyers through a shared equity scheme
  • A clear framework will be developed to give developers, the community and local councils certainty around how a voluntary benefits scheme could be applied

To provide a clear framework for these voluntary arrangements, the following will occur:

  • a legal definition of social and affordable housing will be put into legislation
  • the Victorian Planning Provisions and State Planning Provision Framework will be amended to provide clear direction
  • a new voluntary tool will be developed to enable affordable housing agreements
  •  new value capture tool will be developed to set out how these arrangements can be structured

This will enable councils to set up voluntary arrangements with developers and land owners to provide affordable housing in exchange for rezoning.

A total of $4.7 million has been allocated to implement these reforms.

Fast tracking social housing redevelopments

Too many people in need of social housing are being left too long on waiting lists. It simply isn’t good enough that those waiting times are made worse because of planning delays.

To ensure project costs are minimised and delays for public housing projects are avoided, $500,000 has been allocated to improve the approvals process.

The redevelopment of public housing estates will be the first implementation priority for streamlined planning approvals. This will be facilitated by consideration of social housing redevelopments through an advisory committee process.

This new approach will ensure that good design, public consultation and consistent decision making result in timely delivery of social housing projects.

Underutilised government land

Underutilised and surplus government land will be identified with a further $1.9 million allocated to the new Land Use Victoria.

Using the Fast Track Government Land Service, these funds will ensure changes to the planning provisions for government land are streamlined.

Under this process, the independent Government Land Standing Advisory Committee examines proposals that are referred to it by the Minister for Planning, and calls for public and local council submissions on the future potential of each site.

The advisory committee then provides recommendations to the Minister, including advice on future zoning, consistent with Plan Melbourne’s objectives.

To date, this fast track process has been successful in freeing up land supply and cutting months off the traditional planning scheme amendment process. With this extra investment, a future pipeline of potential sites for the Inclusionary Housing pilot will be generated, ensuring Victorians are getting the most from publicly owned land assets.