Subdivision is the process of dividing land or an existing building into two or more lots. Each lot then has a separate title and can be sold separately. A planning permit is generally required for all types of subdivision and is the first step in obtaining new titles for subdivided land. 

The Northern Grampians Planning Scheme determines whether a planning permit is required for the subdivision of land.

The best way to find out whether you need a planning permit for a subdivision is to speak to a Planning Officer before you lodge an application.

Most subdivision applications require you to follow two steps before you can lodge a plan at the Land Titles Office for the creation of separate titles.

Step 1: Apply for a planning permit with the council, the legislative basis being the Planning and Environment Act 1987.

Step 2: Apply for certification, the legislative basis being the Subdivision Act 1988.

Prior to the Certification of the Plan of Subdivision and/or issue of Statement of Compliance, all of the following requirements need to be met:

  • Planning permit must be issued
  • Plans associated with development permit must be endorsed
  • All conditions of planning permit must be satisfied including any requirement for a Section 173 Agreement and/or public open space contribution
  • Consent from all relevant referral authorities has been received.  

An application for subdivision may require a public open space contribution. 

The public open space contribution can be made by:

  • Setting aside land for public open space
  • Paying a percentage of the overall site value of the land - this contribution will be used to purchase or improve existing public open spaces; or
  • A combination of both

Two lot subdivisions can be exempt from Public Open Space requirements, provided there is no potential for the land to be further subdivided in the future.

A valuation must be obtained from a person who holds qualifications under the Valuation of Land Act 1960. The council, on lodgement of a certification application, can conduct a valuation and pass the results on to you as the applicant.

Payment of the public open space contribution must be made before the issue of the Statement of Compliance for a subdivision. 

If payment is not made within 12 months of the certification application being lodged, a new valuation may be requested at each anniversary and the amount of payment varied accordingly until such time as the amount is paid.

If a Planning Permit requires a Section 173 Agreement, the applicant must either request that the council’s solicitors prepare the agreement (at the applicant's expense) or have their own solicitor prepare it, in which case the council will send the documentation to their solicitor for checking (at the applicant’s expense).

Once the council signs the agreement, it will be lodged with Land Victoria and a final agreement will be forwarded to the applicant. A Section 173 Agreement is a legal agreement between a landowner and the council.

It is registered on the title to the land so it binds not only the current owner but also all future owners and occupiers.

Subdivision applications are assessed through the permit application process (known as Pathway 3).

The following link has more information about subdivision in the Bushfire Management Overlay. A planning permit is required to subdivide land in a Bushfire Management Overlay (BMO).