New minimum garden area requirements

Do you know how the new minimum garden requirement is calculated and how it could affect your proposed development?

" It specifies the percentage of a site that should be retained to ensure the open garden character of suburbs is protected. This does not include a residential building, associated driveway or area set aside for parking."

Where does it apply

It applies to properties in the Neighbourhood Residential Zone (NZR) and General Residential Zone (GRZ).


When does it apply

  • when constructing or extending a residential building

  • when subdividing land to create a lot less than 400 square metres

How much garden area must be retained

  1. When land is subdivided to create smaller lots capable of residential development in the NRZ and GRZ an area of 25% must be set aside on each vacant lot less than 400 square meters.

  2. If constructing or extending a residential building in a NRZ or GRZ the garden area set aside should be:

  • 25% for a lot 400-500sqm

  • 30% for a lot above 500-600sqm

  • 35% for a lot greater than 650sqm

What defines a garden area

Any area on a site with a minimum dimension of 1 metre that does not include:

1) a dwelling or residential building, except for

  • any eave that does not exceed 600mm

  • pergola

  • unroofed terraces, patios, decks, steps or landings less than 800mm in height

  • a basement which doesnt project above ground level

  • any outbuilding not exceeding 10sqm

  • domestic services normal to a residential building

2) a driveway

3) area set aside for parking


Ref: Planning Victoria. For further information and easy to follow diagrams go to planning.vic.gov.au or contact us to find out more.


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