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  • Writer's pictureSwarup Dutta

9 Steps to Subdivision Site Selection in Victoria: Poles, pits and trees!

8 townhouse development
Eight townhouse development under construction at Wallan for a builder

Navigating,  Zoning, Planning, and Amenities for Success


When it comes to selecting the perfect site for a property subdivision project, there are numerous factors to consider. From zoning regulations to amenities and everything in between, each step plays a crucial role in the success of the development. In this guide, we will walk you through the 9 basic steps to subdivision site selection; covering zoning, planning overlay, vegetation, access, orientation, amenities, overshadowing, and parking .

Zoning Regulations: The Foundation of Your Project

Zoning regulations dictate what can and cannot be built on a particular piece of land. Understanding the zoning requirements of your chosen site is essential to ensure your subdivision project complies with local laws and regulations. Conduct thorough research and work closely with zoning authorities to ensure your project aligns with the designated zoning schedule.

The schedule to the Zoning  is an important document as it provides numerical guidance on setbacks, open spaces, site coverage and others.

Planning Overlay: Adding Another Layer of Complexity

Planning overlays are additional regulations that may apply to your site, dictating specific requirements for development. These overlays can impact everything from building height ,  vegetation control, excavation depth, flora fauna and landscape design. Be sure to familiarize yourself with any planning overlays that apply to your site to avoid any surprises down the line.

Site and Vegetation Assessment: Balancing Nature and Development

Assessing the existing vegetation on your site is crucial to both preserving the natural environment and planning your subdivision layout. Consider the impact of removing or preserving trees and greenery, as well as any requirements for replanting or landscaping.

Trees have root systems; Council discourage affecting the health of trees on your block, the nature strip or close to shared/ abutting fences.

Take note of site features like poles, trees and pits on the nature strip. They can pose problems and challenges in the design.

If subdividing the backyard, can one put in a 3 metre wide (minimum) driveway to the backyard?

Access and Orientation: Ensuring Connectivity and Functionality

Access to your site for vehicles and its orientation can greatly influence the success of your subdivision project. Consider factors such as ease of entry and exit, connectivity to amenities and services, and the orientation of buildings to maximize natural light and airflow. Orientation delver shadowing. Council discourages over shadowing neighbours habitable windows and open spaces.

Amenities and Overshadowing: Enhancing the Quality of Life

Close proximity to amenities such as parks, recreational spaces, shopping,  transport, education can greatly enhance the appeal of your subdivision project.

However, be mindful of overshadowing - the potential for buildings to cast shadows on surrounding properties. Careful planning and design can help mitigate overshadowing issues while maximizing the benefits of amenities.

Parking Solutions: Ensuring Adequate Space for Residents and Visitors

Parking is a key consideration for any subdivision project, ensuring residents and visitors have safe and convenient parking options. Consider factors such as the number of parking spaces required, accessibility for different types of vehicles, and the integration of parking areas into the overall site design.


Navigating the complexities of a subdivision site selection requires careful planning, attention to detail, and a thorough understanding of local regulations and requirements. By following these 9 first steps and considering factors such as zoning, planning overlays, vegetation, access, orientation, amenities, overshadowing, and parking, you can set your property subdivision project up for success.

AuArchitecture are property subdivision specialists- be it a Strata titled backyard dual occupancy, side by side duplex, row of  townhouses or larger Torrens titled estate.

Swarup, our Founder, managed 250+ property subdivision permits while consulting to architects, developers or mum and dad first time developers.

Contact him today for a no obligation high level opinion.

Can you subdivide this land?

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