Howard Springs Rural Activity Centre

Introduction

Stage 2 consultation for the Howard Springs Rural Activity Centre Area Plan is happening now until Friday 31 March 2017.

You can view and provide feedback on three options for the draft Area Plan and associated planning principles. The options and planning principles were developed in response to feedback received from the community, Litchfield Council, Litchfield Community Advisory Group, service authorities and NT Government agencies during Stage 1 consultation conducted late last year.

The three options present two possible levels of growth (low and moderate) and a number of different road network arrangements. All of the options aim to preserve the rural lifestyle of surrounding areas, protect the amenity and recreational values of natural features, and provide a safe and efficient local transport network for all users. 

What are Area Plans?

Area Plans provide a detailed framework for land use change, to guide the future use and development of land. There are two main components to an Area Plan. The map shows where opportunities for land use change exist, while the planning principles clarify the vision and requirements that apply to future development in the areas covered by the Area Plan.

Area Plans are included in the NT Planning Scheme and must be considered by the Minister or the Development Consent Authority whenever a rezoning or development is proposed.

Area Plans do not alter existing use rights and land can continue to be used in accordance with the current land-use zone.

Area Plans also do not automatically rezone land. If a landowner wants to develop in accordance with the Area Plan the landowner must first rezone the land by applying to the Minister responsible for administering the Planning Act

Area Plans try to look as far ahead as possible but, in time, they may be reviewed to meet the future needs and aspirations of the community. Any change to an Area Plan is a Planning Scheme Amendment and must follow the process set out in the Planning Act, including public exhibition. 

The process to create the Area Plan

The Howard Springs Rural Activity Centre Area Plan is being developed over three stages. 

Stage 2, happening now until Friday 31 March 2017 includes the release of three options for the Area Plan and draft Planning Principles. The three options have been prepared taking into account the community feedback and background investigation from Stage 1 which occurred in November 2016.

Three stage process for development of the Area Plan. Depicted as a horizontal flow chart. Stage 1 includes information gathering and analysis. Stage 2 includes preparing options for the Area Plan and further community consultation. Stage 3 involves finalising the Area Plan and recommendation to Minister. 

Stage Three is the final stage of the project.  The Planning Commission will finalise and recommend the Area Plan and associated documents to the Minister for Infrastructure, Planning and Logistics for public exhibition as a proposed amendment to the Northern Territory Planning Scheme.

What are the options?

The three draft Area Plan options respond to community feedback on the Howard Springs Land Use Concept within the Litchfield Subregional Land Use Plan and  present different possibilities for the growth of the Rural Activity Centre and the configuration of the local road network.

Option 1 is for low growth, allowing for around 85 rural residential lots and 20 new urban lots, while Options 2 and 3 are moderate growth options. 

All options preserve the rural lifestyle, protect the amenity and recreational values of natural features and provide an interconnected local road network. 

Option 1 - Low GrowthOption 2 - Moderate GrowthOption 3 - Moderate Growth
Thumb_Consultation-Stage-2-concept-area-plan-option-1Thumb_Consultation-Stage-2-concept-area-plan-option-2Thumb_Consultation-Stage-2-concept-area-plan-option-3
Option 1 - Low growth. 
Click on the image above to view a larger version
(PDF 4.5MB)

Option 2 - Moderate Growth
Click on the image above to view a larger version
(PDF 4.2MB) 

Option 3 - Moderate Growth
Click on the image above to view a larger version
(PDF 4.6MB) 

Key Features

  • Allows for around 85 rural residential lots and 20 urban lots.
  • Allows for 800m2 lots immediately adjacent the commercial centre, with the remaining development minimum 4000m2 (1 acre) lots.

Advantages

  • Minimal changes are likely to be required to power or water infrastructure.
  • Minimises overall population at risk of seasonal exposure to mosquitoes.

Disadvantages

  • Does not provide a transition of land uses from rural living to commercial.
  • Will provide a small increase in dwellings but no new housing options.
  • Does not provide the development opportunities that would support improvements to local traffic management and higher quality streetscapes.
  • Small increase in population will not support sustainable commercial development, improve the viability of local businesses, or support improvements to community services and facilities.
  • Requires reticulated sewerage but provision of this infrastructure will not be cost efficient.
  • Mosquito management required prior to development in some areas. 

Key Features

  • The two variations have the same density, but show alternative road configurations. In particular, the use of cul-de-sacs and the treatment of the new Whitewood - Madsen Roads intersection are considered.
  • Both alternatives share the following attributes:
    • Allows for around 60 rural residential lots and 100 urban dwellings.
    • Allows for 2 storey units directly beside the commercial centre, minimum 800m2 lots within the Rural Activity Centre core area and minimum 4000m2 (1 acre) lots in the transition area.
    • Promotes pedestrian/cyclist connections through greenspace links.

Advantages

  • Increased housing options and transition of densities.
  • Population growth within the compact centre increases viability of local businesses and improvements to community services and facilities.
  • The scale of development would increase the viability of improving local traffic management and higher quality streetscapes.
  • Introduces reticulated sewerage at greater efficiency than the low growth option. 

Disadvantages

  • Infrastructure upgrades are required and may delay development of urban areas.
  • Mosquito management required prior to development in some areas.

Get involved

Come along to a community open session, provide a written submission or drop into one of our pop-up information stalls at the Howard Springs Shopping Village during the new few weeks.

Stage 2 of the public consultation is an opportunity for you to be involved in the planning process by telling us:

  • Which of the three options do you prefer overall?
    • What feature(s) of your preferred option do you particularly like?
    • What feature(s) of the other options do you particularly dislike?
    • How could your preferred option be improved? 
  • Which of the proposed road networks do you think would best support the safety and convenience of motorists, pedestrians and cyclists? 
    • How should the new Whitewood-Madsen Road intersection be treated?
      (Either staggered T intersection with Whitewood Road as the priority road; or staggered T intersection with the future Madsen Road connection as the priority road; or a signalised four-way intersection)?
  • Do the draft planning principles (PDF 110KB) cover all the issues for the activity centre and are the proposed measures adequate and reasonable? 
    • What other issues do you think might need to be considered?
    • How could the planning principles be improved to better address the issues?

View the options (PDF 3.6MB)


Read the draft Planning Principles (PDF 110KB)


You can make a written submission and/or draw your ideas on a copy of your preferred option. If you choose to submit a drawing please include some notes to explain your ideas. You can pick up a printed copy of the options at any of our pop up stalls and community open sessions.

All feedback from this consultation will help us develop the final Area Plan which will be recommended to the Minister for Infrastructure, Planning and Logistics for public exhibition as a proposed Planning Scheme amendment.

Write to us

Use our contact form or send us an email or letter with your thoughts on the three draft options for the Howard Springs Rural Activity Centre. 

  • Fill in the Contact form
  • Send an email to ntpc@nt.gov.au
  • Write to the Planning Commission at:

    Howard Springs Rural Activity Centre Area Plan
    NT Planning Commission
    GPO Box 1680
    DARWIN NT 0810

Come and talk to us

We will be at the following locations for you to find out more and let us know whats important to you.

DateLocation Event 

Tuesday 28 February 2017
2.30pm - 5.30pm

Howard Springs Shopping VillagePop-up Information Stall

Thursday 2 March 2017
2.30pm - 5.30pm

Howard Springs Shopping VillagePop-up Information Stall

Saturday 4 March 2017 9am -1pm

Whitewood Hall Community Open Session
Drop in and talk to the project team 

Monday 6 March 2017 10am - 1pm

Howard Springs Shopping Village Pop-up Information Stall 
Friday 10 March 2017
2.30pm - 5.30pm 
Howard Springs Shopping Village Pop-up Information Stall 
Saturday 11 March 2017
11am - 5pm 
Whitewood Hall Community Open Session 
Drop in and talk to the project team 
Tuesday 14 March 2017
10am - 1pm 
Howard Springs Shopping Village Pop-up Information Stall 
Friday 17 March 2017
10am - 1pm 
Howard Springs Shopping Village Pop-up Information Stall 
Monday 20 March 2017
3pm - 7pm 
Howard Hall Community Open Session
Drop in and talk to the project team  
Saturday 25 March 2017
10:30am - 12:30pm 
Howard Springs Shopping VillagePop-up Information Stall
Tuesday 28 March 2017
2:30pm - 5:30pm 
Howard Springs Shopping VillagePop-up Information Stall