Bellarine protected under Planning Act

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Planning and Services Pillar

The G21 region's Bellarine Peninsula is now permanently protected from overdevelopment thanks to strengthened planning controls brought in by the State Government.

Minister for Planning Richard Wynne has declared the Peninsula a Distinctive Areas and Landscapes under the Planning and Environment Act 1987.

The declaration follows extensive consultation with local communities, councils and Traditional Owners and ensures the unique features of the area are recognised and prepared for long-term protection.

A Statement of Significance is included in the declaration outlining the cultural, spiritual and heritage importance of the area to the Wadawurrung People.

The Bellarine Peninsula is one of Victoria's and the G21 region's most important tourism and recreation destinations with its stunning beaches, rural landscapes and historic towns including Queenscliffe and Portarlington. It’s also blessed with parks, wetlands of biodiversity significance and productive agricultural land.

The move to provide lasting protection to the Bellarine comes after the Surf Coast was also declared a Distinctive Area and Landscape last month and delivers on the Government’s election commitment to protect these regions by balancing growth while preserving their distinctive features.

The State Government will now begin working on a Statement of Planning Policy setting out a 50-year vision for the region to guide development controls and settlement boundaries.

This will provide a framework to ensure the beaches, coastal biodiversity, recreation and tourism attributes of the Bellarine continue to be of special significance.