Sustainable design assessment

Environmentally sustainable development

We are committed to reducing environmental impacts of the built environment through Environmentally Sustainable Design (ESD) principles. Changes to planning requirements for residential and non-residential developments will help to:

  • improve amenity and liveability of homes
  • reduce energy use and associated costs
  • reduce waste to landfill

Together with other Victorian councils we have implemented the Sustainable Design Assessment in the Planning Process (SDAPP) program. The SDAPP program recognises that many decisions affecting the sustainability of a new building are best made early in the design process.

Environmentally Sustainability Development (ESD) Policy

Kingston introduced an ESD Policy into its planning scheme through Amendment G110. It was approved by the Minister for Planning and gazetted on 24 July 2019.

View this policy in the Kingston planning scheme Clause 22.13 - Environmentally Sustainable Development.

Application requirements

The ESD Policy applies throughout the City of Kingston to residential and non-residential development that requires a planning permit.

An application must be accompanied by either a Sustainable Design Assessment (SDA) or a Sustainability Management Plan (SMP) as specified in Table 1 of the ESD Policy.

An SDA is required for small to medium developments. You can complete your SDA using the Built Environment Sustainability Scorecard (BESS) and the SDA will need to be provided when lodging your planning application.

Your planning application will also need to include the STORM report for the development as well as FirstRate certificates for each dwelling.

Larger developments will require an SMP that has been prepared by qualified environmental, sustainability and transport consultants.

Applications for larger non-residential developments must also include a Green Travel Plan.

Built Environment Sustainability Scorecard (BESS)

This online sustainability assessment tool:

  • is free for planning permit applicants to use
  • assesses any size and type of building, including mixed use developments
  • is easy to use
  • can be used to benchmark against other developments
  • streamlines the planning permit process
  • reduces running costs of new buildings
  • provides liveability and usability benefits for building owners and users.

The information required to complete a BESS assessment is simple for small developments and increases in complexity for larger developments.

Important Notes

All environmentally sustainable design initiatives should be shown and/or annotated on architectural drawings.

All approved sustainable design assessment reports will be endorsed as part of the planning permit from Council.