Floodplain planning

As it is possible to predict which land is likely to be flooded, it makes sense to regulate development and building in those areas to ensure any impacts are known and managed. The aim is to avoid or minimise the increase in future flood risks.

The Victorian Planning Provisions (VPPs) are a template for the local government authorities to prepare consistent planning schemes. Each planning scheme contains a mandatory Policy Planning Framework, with provision for local councils to include their local planning policies and to select from a series of standard zones and overlays.

Information from flood studies allows councils, in consultation with catchment management authorities (CMAs) and Melbourne Water, to decide which flood zones/overlays are appropriate and to shape local planning policies to reflect the flood risk.

If a proposed development is in a flood zone or overlay a planning permit is required for subdivision or works. This triggers a referral to a floodplain management authority (your CMA or Melbourne Water) who can object, approve or approve with conditions. Each application is assessed on its merits.

DEECA has prepared guidelines for assessing development proposals. Their purpose is to provide a clear, consistent and transparent process for managing land use and development in flood-affected areas in Victoria.

More information:

  • For information on planning schemes, please visit the Planning website.
  • For information, advice and guidelines on flood-related planning permits or development refer to Melbourne Water or your relevant CMA.

Page last updated: 27/04/23