Growth target set for state

Victoria has the largest annual population growth and needs more than two million additional homes by the 2050s.

Macedon Ranges Shire is expected to accommodate an additional 12,700 houses by 2051 in the Victorian Government’s latest draft housing targets.

Last week Premier Jacinta Allan announced the draft targets for each local government area in the Housing Statement as part of a vision for Victoria’s next 30 years.

The Premier said Victoria had the largest annual population growth and it needed more than two million additional homes by the 2050s.

“More homes are needed in established suburbs – close to jobs, transport, education, and services – to give more young people the chance to live near where they grew up, and to reduce future growth pressure on families in Melbourne’s booming outer suburbs,” Ms Allan said in a statement issued last week.

In neighbouring shires, some targets are more modest than others, with Mount Alexander’s draft target set at 4300 and Hepburn’s at 3000. Meanwhile, Mitchell Shire is expected to more than triple its current housing supply of 21,000 with a draft target set at 68,000 new houses.

The state government is expected to consult with local councils about the draft target, local planning changes they propose and infrastructure support. Finalised targets are planned for release by the end of the year.

MRSC’s director of planning and environment, Rebecca Stockfeld, said the council was only recently informed of the draft housing targets.

“Council will work with the Department of Transport and Planning to clarify how the numbers have been derived, and what support may be provided, to be able to negotiate where necessary and firm up our own position,” Ms Stockfeld said.

“Broadly, however, the council would welcome any additional Victorian Government investment in additional housing for our shire, including specific targets and support for more affordable housing consistent with our Affordable Housing Policy adopted in 2023.”

Ms Stockfeld said the council was appreciative of support already provided in this area, with a minimum investment of $30 million allocated to the Macedon Ranges through the Big Housing Build to build social and affordable housing.

To date, six homes have been completed in the shire, with four projects under way to build 19 homes at a value of $12.5 million.
Ms Stockfeld said growth planning was already being considered for several towns.

“The council has been focusing on supporting our shire’s growing population including through the adoption of a Settlement Strategy in 2011, which identified expected future growth in particular for the towns of Gisborne/New Gisborne, Woodend, Kyneton, Riddells Creek, Romsey and Lancefield,” Ms Stockfeld said.

“Since the adoption of the Settlement Strategy, detailed planning documents guiding sustainable change to the residential make-up of each of these towns have been developed, with the exception of the Draft Gisborne Futures Structure Plan currently being finalised.”