Sustainable Subdivisions Framework Trial


Surf Coast Shire Council is working with the Council Alliance for a Sustainable Built Environment (CASBE) to test a Sustainable Subdivisions Framework.

This trial provides resources to support applicants to assess their subdivision applications, within existing planning processes. The trial has been extended to October 2022.

Information for applicants
Are you submitting a subdivision planning application? See below to download the relevant applicant kit and template below for instructions on how you can participate in the Sustainable Subdivisions Framework Trial.

For additional information on the Framework and application process, visit the CASBE website

Medium Subdivisions 16 – 59 lots

Large Subdivisions 60 – 249 lots

Very Large Subdivisions 250+ lots


About the Sustainable Subdivisions Framework

  • How does the trial work?

 For subdivision greater than 16 lots, Council’s statutory and strategic planners will work with applicants to assess their subdivision applications against the Sustainable Subdivisions Framework for the duration of the trial. There is no additional application fee for developers to adopt the framework.

Through the process we aim to encourage the development community to adopt the voluntary recommendations, while simultaneously gaining detailed feedback on the Framework.

While use of the sustainability recommendations is highly encouraged, it is voluntary, enabling capacity building and shared consideration of innovative approaches.We invite you to talk to us about opportunities to apply the Framework to your project/subdivision applications.

  • Why is a framework important?

The creation of a subdivision is the creation of a community. A subdivision is an opportunity to set up community life that will extend over many decades. The initial subdivision design represents an enormous opportunity to create fundamental conditions, for a sustainable and resilient community.

Despite clear objectives in existing planning policy, seeking to influence sustainable design outcomes in the built environment, there is limited information regarding requirements and standards to support robust evaluation of subdivisions from a sustainability perspective.

The long-term nature of subdivision planning is now set against a backdrop where our climate is fundamentally changing. Many councils are planning population growth for the next 20-30 years, in some cases via Precinct Structure Plans, and are currently considering how these communities might contribute to achieving the 2050 net zero emissions target identified in the Victorian Climate Change Act.

  • What will the Framework achieve?

The Framework seeks to mitigate the impact of future climate projection scenarios, by creating sustainable and liveable subdivisions that can adapt to the changing climate. The Framework identifies seven categories that can assist in creating environmentally sustainable subdivisions. 

These are:

  • Site Layout and Liveability
  • Streets and Public Realm
  • Energy
  • Ecology
  • Integrated Water Management (IWM)
  • Urban Heat
  • Circular Economy (Materials and Waste)

The seven Framework categories each include objectives and measurable standards to facilitate stronger sustainability outcomes and apply innovation and implementation considerations to all categories.

For further detailed information about the Sustainable Subdivisions Framework, please visit the Council Alliance for a Sustainable Built Environment (CASBE) website.  From the website you can access an extensive array of resources to support the Framework, including a copy of the Framework itself and sample submission requirements.  A series of case studies are also available from the website