Today, the ACT Minister for Planning Chris Steel MLA released a to support the design and building of a wider range of housing types as well as an opportunity to revitalise smaller retail centres.

The Planning Institute of Australia supports these priorities alongside a strategic planning approach to the location and scale of the proposed zoning changes.

PIA ACT President Natalia Anderson said: “Canberra will benefit from the implementation of these priorities through the provision of a wider range of ‘missing middle’ typologies that will help to grow Canberra into a more liveable and sustainable city.”

Minister Steel noted that “The priorities are assisting in the ACT Government’s commitment to build thousands of new homes under the National Housing Accord housing target.”

The Minister “… wants to show what forms of missing-middle housing can fit into a typical Canberra street, down to the view from the neighbour’s window, and how we can incorporate green spaces and trees on a block with two or more homes.”

The Government has already made some changes to the Territory’s Planning system to enable the construction of a more diverse range of housing choices in both new and existing suburbs. The priorities document sets out the next steps in planning reform to support a wider range of housing types within a broader planning context, including:

  • Planning for more housing in and around key precincts, shops and rapid transport connections
  • Planning for the growth of Canberra’s newest regions
  • Outlining Canberra’s future jobs and innovation precincts
  • Supporting community needs across the ACT
  • Territory Priority Projects
  • Environmental Protection
  • Design focus and implementing the New Planning System.

The PIA ACT President agrees that there is a great opportunity to deliver more housing close to shopping centres and public transport to create a better-connected, accessible, and sustainable city.

PIA supports the proposed investigation to show how planning controls and the provision of housing in these locations may act as a catalyst for the revitalisation of centres including those which are currently vacant, underutilised or ageing.

PIA will be engaged in the development and implementation of the Minister’s planning priorities including the Draft Design Guide and changes to the Territory Plan to support the construction of additional missing middle housing, including townhouses, duplexes and row houses on appropriately located residential zoned blocks.


Contact: Natalia Anderson RPIA, PIA ACT President ( or Tessa Faucheur, PIA ACT State Manager ( 0432 392 351