Sustainable Subdivisions Framework (SSF)

The Rural City of Wangaratta has joined forces with 7 Councils across the Goulburn Murray Climate Alliance to push for more sustainable development outcomes in greenfield subdivisions, by employing a Sustainable Subdivisions Advisor to work across the Councils. Participating Councils include Alpine Shire, Greater Shepparton, Indigo Shire, Mitchell Shire, Murrindindi Shire, Strathbogie Shire and the Towong Shire.

The dedicated shared Sustainable Subdivisions Advisor resource will support planning staff for a 12-month period, assessing subdivision applications to utilise the Sustainable Subdivisions Framework (SSF) resources and assisting developers to increase sustainable development outcomes.

If you are in the preliminary stages of preparing a subdivision plan or ready to lodge an application, please contact Councils Planning Department to arrange a meeting (no fee) with the Sustainable Subdivisions Advisor who is available to assist developers with delivering sustainable subdivision outcomes.

Information for subdivision applicants

Are you submitting a subdivision planning permit application? See below to download the relevant applicant kit and template below with instructions on how you can participate in the Sustainable Subdivisions Framework (SSF) Trial. For additional information on the SSF and application process, visit the CASBE website or contact the Sustainable Subdivisions Advisor at for further information.

Small Subdivisions 3 – 15 lots

Medium Subdivisions 16 – 59 lots

Large Subdivisions 60 - 249 lots

Very Large Subdivisions 250+ lots


About the Sustainable Subdivisions Framework

How does the trial work?

Council planning staff will work with applicants to assess their residential subdivision applications against the Sustainable Subdivisions Framework (SSF). There is no additional application fee for developers to utilise the Sustainable Subdivision Advisor and resources.

We invite you to talk to us about opportunities to apply the SSF to your subdivision application. We acknowledge implementing any recommendations within the SSF is voluntary; we do however strongly encourage developers to utilise the SSF to frame your thinking when preparing the initial concept subdivision design and then implement any opportunities identified during the detailed design process. We welcome all feedback on the SSF and welcome collaboration with the development community to improve the SSF and deliver beneficial outcomes for our community.

Why is the SSF important?

The creation of a subdivision is the creation of a community. A subdivision is an opportunity to set up community life that will extend over many decades. The initial subdivision design represents an enormous opportunity to create fundamental conditions for a sustainable and resilient community.

Despite clear objectives in existing planning policy seeking to influence sustainable design outcomes in the built environment, there is limited information regarding requirements and standards to support robust evaluation of subdivisions from a sustainability perspective.

The long-term nature of subdivision planning is now set against a backdrop where our climate is fundamentally changing. Many councils are planning population growth for the next 20-30 years and are currently considering how these communities might contribute to achieving the 2050 net zero emissions target identified in the Victorian Climate Change Act.

What will the SSF achieve? 

The SSF seeks to mitigate the impact of future climate projection scenarios, by creating sustainable and liveable subdivisions that can adapt to the changing climate. The SSF identifies seven categories that can assist in creating environmentally sustainable subdivisions. These are:

  • Site Layout and Liveability
  • Streets and Public Realm
  • Energy
  • Ecology
  • Integrated Water Management (IWM)
  • Urban Heat
  • Circular Economy (Materials and Waste)

The seven SSF categories each include objectives and measurable standards to facilitate stronger sustainability outcomes and apply innovation and implementation considerations to all categories.

For further detailed information about the Sustainable Subdivisions Framework, please visit the Council Alliance for a Sustainable Built Environment (CASBE) website. From the website you can access an extensive array of resources to support the SSF, including case studies, FAQs and a copy of the SSF itself and sample submission requirements.